Please find below elements of the January 2014 Environmental Study Report for the Hope Side Road/Old Richmond Road (Terry Fox Drive to Highway 416) Class Environmental Assessment:
+ Appendix F – Landscape Assessment and Evaluation report (“Context Sensitive Design and Landscape Report”) – 4.2 MB, 16 pp.
The Notice of Completion was posted on January 30, 2014. Comments must reach the Minister of the Environment before March 3.
4 February 2014
Stony Swamp: Part II Order request, Media release
On March 2, the Greenspace Alliance filed a Part II Order request with the Ontario Minister of the Environment. In brief, our objections are as follows:
1. The terms of reference for this project were not subjected to public consultations.
2. Directing traffic headed for Highway 416 via Fallowfield Road is a far more benign option.
3. Should the Minister decide to allow the study’s preferred option, then far more comprehensive mitigation measures are required.
Our requested remedy is that the Minister:
1. Order the City to comply with Part II of the Act, under terms of reference that include a proper and comprehensive assessment of the option of widening Fallowfield Road. Specifically, the terms of reference should include a full assessment of the negative impact on Stony Swamp under the Old Richmond Road/West Hunt Club Road option and the feasibility of mitigation that would achieve “no net loss” of ecological functions.
2. In the alternative, should he agree to discard the Fallowfield option, order that the project be allowed on condition that:
a – a study be completed to his satisfaction which uses the cumulative effects methodology applied in the November 2012 “Joint Study to Assess Cumulative Effects of Transportation Infrastructures on the National Capital Greenbelt.”
b- based on that study, a comprehensive mitigation plan be developed and implemented against the adverse impact of all wildlife, in addition to mitigation against adverse impact on species at risk. Before finalizing the plan, it should be subjected to peer review and public consultation.
c- it estimate the impact on peat and carbon sink loss, air quality, including benzene concentrations, and greenhouse gas emissions and identify appropriate mitigation measures;
d- it not include “wet” culverts under Old Richmond Road.
2 March 2014
A media release was issued 4 March.
Update – 11 January 2021
This road widening (“Kanata South Link”) was completed in November 2020. Asked for an explanation of what “Environmental mitigation on-site and wetland compensation off-site” was about, the City planner provided this reply:
With the need to provide 3 roundabouts and increase capacity of the Old Richmond Road and West Hunt Club Road between Hope Side Road and Highway 416 due to the growing communities of Stittsville, Kanata South and Rideau Goulbourn, the City of Ottawa had to obtain additional lands adjacent to the existing traffic lanes from the NCC and therefore work closely with NCC staff from the Environmental Assessment stage, the initial design, to researching previous studies and issues, understanding field studies, and coordinating to find solutions along the way. This project is consistent with the policy of no net loss of habitat, identified in the NCC’s Greenbelt Master Plan, which supports the Federal Policy on Wetland Conservation. The entire project had a budget of $44 Million.
Stony Swamp is one of the most ecologically diverse protected areas in the Ottaway Valley, so protecting the environment is extremely important. Mitigation measures included:
+ Installation of retaining walls to reduce impact of roadway on environment
+ Seasonally timed construction to minimize impact on surrounding environment
+ Installation of wildlife fencing and wildlife crossings
+ Stormwater management
+ Restoration of landscape impacted by construction
Ongoing monitoring and studying of these measures will continue for ten years.
The compensation for protecting the Environment included:
- Construction of four wetland cells (~ 4 Hectares) which increased wetland habitat diversity within the Stoney Swamp Complex off Moodie Drive south of West Hunt Club, providing a Net Gain for Species at Risk
- Removal of invasive plant species (European common reed, European buckthorn and purple loosestrife)
- Improvement of overwintering habitat for turtles at risk (Blanding’s, Snapping)
- Tree planting and landscaping enhancement
- The City exchanged unopened ROW for widenings required, to protect lands in the Greenbelt
We installed 7 Wildlife Crossings throughout the project which are essentially animal/reptile crossings under the road which will be monitored by the NCC over the next several years.
Protection of Species at Risk included:
Wildlife fencing, retaining walls and grade separated wildlife crossings were installed to protect several species at risk:
- Milk Snake
- Blanding’s Turtle
- Snapping Turtle
- Western Chorus Frog