Local Heros

    No 15 Elm Street, near Booth, was the home Joseph Guillaume Laurent “Larry” Robillard and his brother(s) grew up in. On Nov 8, 1941, 73 years ago, Sgt. Robillard of the Royal Canadian Air Force was awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal. He downed two enemy aircraft while protecting a descending parachutist. Then just 20 years old, the resident of 15 Elm Street had already shot down a Messerschmitt 109 on 22 June . During a patrol over Lille, France, on 2 July 1941, then a novice pilot with less than a month’s flying under his belt, he saw a descending parachutist and moved down … Continue reading Local Heros

Intensification not without its drawbacks

On Pamilla Street an infill developer severed the side yard of a small single — the blue one to the right in the pic — and greatly intensified the site. The neighbours objected, took it to the OMB, lost, and the building went ahead. Why was it controversial? Well, the usual developer sins. They took the front and back yard set back minimums as the permissible maximum building size. So the infill house is huge — so huge, it is in fact 3 houses on one 23′ lot with shared driveway. The neighbours objected to the height, the car traffic, and … Continue reading Intensification not without its drawbacks

From Parking to Parks

Miracles do happen at City Hall. Not often. But one is unfolding right now. Pay attention. Instead of paving over more of our scarce parkland for vehicle parking, instead of just whining forever about the lack of City park space in our downtown neighborhoods … our parks dept has actually agreed to expand a park onto the road allowance. And removing some vehicle parking too! Yes, this miraculous green space expansion is happening right here in little ole’ Ottawa. Chaudiere Park is a small pocket park on Elm Street in West Side Ottawa. The proposed expansion replaces on-street parking with a … Continue reading From Parking to Parks

Parks Planning (ii)

Chaudiere Park is a well-used large-ish pocket park on Elm Street, between Rochester and Preston. It’s about 140′ along the street, and about 100′ deep. The park is dominated by a very large, very deep wading pool that delivers a freeze-your-bones-it’s-so-cold experience to kiddies for six weeks every summer. There is a large sandbox on the east; a basketball court on the west. The general impression is a sea of pavement. and Chaudiere Park on Elm is a newish location for the former Chaudiere Park on LeBreton Flats, which was relocated to Elm after the “slum clearance” expropriation in the 1960’s. As such, it deserves a proper park … Continue reading Parks Planning (ii)

Noble residents

The modest house shown above on Elm Street is typical for the neighborhood. West Side homes have seen many stories played out. But this story is far from typical. This is the home Joseph Guillaume Laurent “Larry” Robillard and his brothers grew up in. On Nov 8, 1941, 70 years ago, Sgt. Robillard of the Royal Canadian Air Force was awarded the Distinguished Flying Medal. He downed two enemy aircraft while protecting a descending parachutist. Then just 20 years old, the resident of 15 Elm Street had already shot down a Messerschmitt 109 on 22 June . During a patrol over Lille, France, on 2 July 1941, then a … Continue reading Noble residents

Real Estate Porn: the Elm edition

Ah, real estate porn. Featuring objects you cannot afford, splendors you can only dream about. And the opportunity to second guess and dump on the people that did spend the money to do what you wouldn’t have done! There have been many previous posts about the innovative infill houses on the west end of Elm Street. On a single 56×100 lot the developer, Sage, has inserted four houses, replacing one that wasn’t much larger than a couple of shipping containers. From the street, it appears to be two single homes; and from the backyards it appears to be two homes. The four homes have different … Continue reading Real Estate Porn: the Elm edition