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As a community that’s been around for almost half a century, some of Barrhaven’s roads and other infrastructure is showing its wear. We see pot holes all over the community, cracks forming in roads and sidewalks, and abstract displays of patchwork done over the decades.

Barrhaven West is a rapidly growing community with over 47,000 residents. We make up almost half of Barrhaven and have many of the amenities which makes this community so great. 

We are serviced by both the Minto Recreation and Walter Baker centres.  We have dozens of parks, two golf courses, and two major shopping hubs. Strandherd — Barrhaven’s busiest roadway — runs right through our community, along with Jockvale, Cedarview, and Greenbank. 

Barrhaven West is also home to the oldest parts of the neighborhood which have often been forgotten when it comes to infrastructure upgrades and investments.

Roads & Sidewalks

The state of many roads in Barrhaven West are deplorable. Some look like abstract pieces of artwork with patches of cement and pavement from repairs over the decades. Others are crumbling with potholes and cracks which can damage cars.

Our sidewalks also haven’t received much love and attention over the years, resulting in grass and weeds coming up through the cracks. This has made it particularly difficult for those with mobility issues and for those who use wheelchairs or walkers. The uneven surfaces make it particularly difficult for them to get around, especially in the winter months.

It seems no clear plan is in place for how to deal with this. We are lucky to see a few roads repaved every year, but Barrhaven West being the size it is, we haven’t seen the type of investments needed for the infrastructure work to remain sustainable.

We need to do an assessment of all our roads and sidewalks to see what their life expectancies are and what we must do from there. From there we can keep up with ongoing maintenance work to hopefully expand their longevity, and repave areas that are needed.

This will allow us to budget years in advance for infrastructure improvements in Barrhaven West and elsewhere. This will help balance the books and ensure projects are done in a timely fashion.

Greenbank Road Realignment

It’s a project which should have been built at least a decade ago. We cannot wait any longer for the Greenbank Road realignment to be built. Current timelines have the project work starting in 2030 with a completion date of 2032. That’s 10 years from now. In that time Half Moon Bay will only continue to grow and more people will be travelling in and out of the community over a bridge that wasn’t built for such heavy traffic patterns.

The plans are all drawn up; the only piece missing right now is funding. As I canvass around Barrhaven West, many people have told me they believe no elected official has rallied hard enough for the timeline to be pushed up. I would agree with this statement.

While we have seen many public meetings held — and everyone agrees the Greenbank Road Realignment project is needed for that matter — we have seen no clear push to secure funding.

This is a costly project and the solution isn’t an easy fix. I’d work with all levels of government to make sure they know this is a priority for Barrhaven West residents. I’d speak regularly with the provincial and federal counterparts on this file to ensure the communities advocacy efforts don’t go unnoticed.

Newspaper clippings from the Ottawa Citizen in 2007 expressed the need for the Greenbank Road realignment project. People lined up for hours and camped outside overnight to purchase a home in Half Moon Bay, all under the pretense of easier access to the community. The city has not lived up to those standards.

I’ve spoken to residents who say the commute from their home in Half Moon Bay to the heart of Barrhaven can take 15-20 minutes during rush hour, sometimes even longer. They need to detour around the community just to get in or out. It shouldn’t be this difficult. We have the solutions, we have the need, and we have the want. The only part missing is the money. 

Jockvale Road Rail Crossing

It’s been an issue on the minds of Barrhaven West voters since the 1990’s, yet still nothing has been done. A safer pedestrian crossing is needed on Jockvale Road near Barrhaven United Church.

Residents of the Steepleview Crossing Retirement Community have told me they won’t leave their homes in the winter because they are scared of getting stuck or being hit by a car.

Jockvale Road is a busy hub for vehicles. Residents in the area say they would feel safer with a median in the middle of the road to act as an island when crossing. Proper traffic lights  and a crosswalk would also help people get across safely.

One of the most important parts of this project would be building a sidewalk or multi-use path on the Barrhaven United Church side of Jockvale. While there is one located on the other side of the road, it doesn’t help people who are catching the bus or who live on that side of Jockvale.

Roughly 40 per cent of the Steepleview Crossing residents deal with mobility issues, 20 of the residents use wheelchairs. They shouldn’t have to live in fear for their safety every time they cross the road.

Additionally, I’d like to see the bike path expanded from Jockvale road to Antler Ave, near Valiant. This path is used regularly by people on foot and bicycle who are getting around the community. 

Barnsdale / 416 Interchange

While I’m happy to see the Barnsdale/ 416 Interchange become a priority, we need to ensure Barrhaven West’s councillor keeps pressing for construction to start on this project. I would do exactly that.

This project has seen some advancements with approval for the environment study to begin. This is the first of many steps that need to take place before shovels can go in the ground.

Barrhaven’s growth has expanded from 40,000 residents in 2001 to 77,000 residents in 2012. Today with Barrhaven East and West wards combined, we sit at a collective population of 100,000 residents and climbing.

It’s up to the city to secure funding and determine a construction timeline for the Barnsdale /416 interchange. I’d push to ensure this project is completed as soon as possible. 

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