Ottawa is the capital city of Canada. It stands on the south bank of the Ottawa River in the eastern portion of southern Ontario. Ottawa borders Gatineau, Quebec; as of 2016, Ottawa had a city population of 964,743 and a metropolitan population of 1,323,783 making it the fourth-largest city and the fifth-largest CMA in Canada. Founded in 1826 as Bytown, incorporated as Ottawa in 1855, the city has evolved into the political centre of Canada, its original boundaries were expanded through numerous annexations and were replaced by a new city incorporation and amalgamation in 2001 which increased its land area. The city name "Ottawa" was chosen in reference to the Ottawa River, the name of, derived from the Algonquin Odawa, meaning "to trade". Ottawa has the most educated population among Canadian cities and is home to a number of post-secondary and cultural institutions, including the National Arts Centre, the National Gallery, numerous national museums. Ottawa has the highest standard of living in low unemployment.
With the draining of the Champlain Sea around ten thousand years ago, the Ottawa Valley became habitable. Local populations used the area for wild edible harvesting, fishing, trade and camps for over 6500 years; the Ottawa river valley has archaeological sites with arrow heads and stone tools. Three major rivers meet within Ottawa, making it an important trade and travel area for thousands of years; the Algonquins called the Ottawa River Kichi Sibi or Kichissippi meaning "Great River" or "Grand River". Étienne Brûlé regarded as the first European to travel up the Ottawa River, passed by Ottawa in 1610 on his way to the Great Lakes. Three years Samuel de Champlain wrote about the waterfalls in the area and about his encounters with the Algonquins, using the Ottawa River for centuries. Many missionaries would follow the early traders; the first maps of the area used the word Ottawa, derived from the Algonquin word adawe, to name the river. Philemon Wright, a New Englander, created the first settlement in the area on 7 March 1800 on the north side of the river, across from the present day city of Ottawa in Hull.
He, with five other families and twenty-five labourers, set about to create an agricultural community called Wrightsville. Wright pioneered the Ottawa Valley timber trade by transporting timber by river from the Ottawa Valley to Quebec City. Bytown, Ottawa's original name, was founded as a community in 1826 when hundreds of land speculators were attracted to the south side of the river when news spread that British authorities were constructing the northerly end of the Rideau Canal military project at that location; the following year, the town was named after British military engineer Colonel John By, responsible for the entire Rideau Waterway construction project. The canal's military purpose was to provide a secure route between Montreal and Kingston on Lake Ontario, bypassing a vulnerable stretch of the St. Lawrence River bordering the state of New York that had left re-supply ships bound for southwestern Ontario exposed to enemy fire during the War of 1812. Colonel By set up military barracks on the site of today's Parliament Hill.
He laid out the streets of the town and created two distinct neighbourhoods named "Upper Town" west of the canal and "Lower Town" east of the canal. Similar to its Upper Canada and Lower Canada namesakes "Upper Town" was predominantly English speaking and Protestant whereas "Lower Town" was predominantly French and Catholic. Bytown's population grew to 1,000 as the Rideau Canal was being completed in 1832. Bytown encountered some impassioned and violent times in her early pioneer period that included Irish labour unrest that attributed to the Shiners' War from 1835 to 1845 and political dissension evident from the 1849 Stony Monday Riot. In 1855 Bytown was incorporated as a city. William Pittman Lett was installed as the first city clerk guiding it through 36 years of development. On New Year's Eve 1857, Queen Victoria, as a symbolic and political gesture, was presented with the responsibility of selecting a location for the permanent capital of the Province of Canada. In reality, Prime Minister John A. Macdonald had assigned this selection process to the Executive Branch of the Government, as previous attempts to arrive at a consensus had ended in deadlock.
The "Queen's choice" turned out to be the small frontier town of Ottawa for two main reasons: Firstly, Ottawa's isolated location in a back country surrounded by dense forest far from the Canada–US border and situated on a cliff face would make it more defensible from attack. Secondly, Ottawa was midway between Toronto and Kingston and Montreal and Quebec City. Additionally, despite Ottawa's regional isolation it had seasonal water transportation access to Montreal over the Ottawa River and to Kingston via the Rideau Waterway. By 1854 it had a modern all season Bytown and Prescott Railway that carried passengers and supplies the 82-kilometres to Prescott on the Saint Lawrence River and beyond. Ottawa's small size, it was thought, would make it less prone to rampaging politically motivated mobs, as had happened in the previous Canadian capitals; the government owned the land that would become Parliament Hill which they thought would be an ideal location for the Parliament Buildings. Ottawa was th
Helen Sawyer Hogg
Helen Battles Sawyer Hogg, CC was an astronomer noted for pioneering research into globular clusters and variable stars. She was the first female president of several astronomical organizations and a notable woman of science in a time when many universities would not award scientific degrees to women, her scientific advocacy and journalism included astronomy columns in the Toronto Star and the Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. She was considered a "great scientist and a gracious person" over a career of sixty years. Born in Lowell, Massachusetts on August 1, 1905, Helen was the second daughter of banker Edward Everett Sawyer and his wife Carrie Douglass Sawyer, a schoolteacher. Talented academically, Helen graduated from Lowell High School at the age of 15, but chose to stay for an additional year before leaving to attend Mount Holyoke College in 1922. After graduating from high school, Hogg enrolled in Mount Holyoke College. Despite having nearly completed a chemistry degree, she changed her major from chemistry to astronomy after attending introductory astronomy classes with Dr. Anne Sewell in her junior year.
In January 1925, Dr. Sewell took her class to see a total eclipse of the sun and a year Annie Jump Cannon, an astronomer working at Harvard University, came to visit Mount Holyoke. Hogg cited these experiences as defining moments. In 1926 Hogg completed her undergraduate degree in astronomy. After graduating from Mount Holyoke, Hogg received a fellowship for graduate study at Harvard Observatory in the fall of 1926 with the help of Dr. Cannon. Once at Harvard Hogg worked with Dr. Harlow Shapley, the director of the graduate program in astronomy. Following the expectations and work ethic of Dr. Shapley, Hogg worked hard, long hours measuring the size and brightness of globular clusters and published several papers. Hogg received her master's degree in 1928 and her doctoral degree in 1931, both from Radcliffe College, as Harvard refused to award graduate degrees in science to women at the time. For her advances in astronomy, Hogg received honorary doctoral degrees from six Canadian and U. S. Universities, including Mount Holyoke College and the University of Toronto.
While completing her doctoral degree, Hogg taught astronomy at Smith College. After graduation she moved to Victoria, British Columbia, where she began research at the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory. Hogg began taking photos of variable stars with the 72-inch reflecting telescope, cataloguing the cyclical changes in the brightness of the variable stars. At the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory, Hogg found 132 new variable stars in the globular cluster Messier 2. Hogg published this groundbreaking work in astronomical catalogues. Notably, Hogg accomplished all of this as a volunteer assistant to her husband, as the Dominion Astrophysical Observatory would not offer her a job. In 1935 Hogg moved to the University of Toronto, after her husband had received a job offer to work at the David Dunlap Observatory. For her first year there, Hogg continued her work photographing globular clusters, amassing thousands of photographs which she used to identify many thousands of variable stars, she published Catalogue of 1116 Variable Stars in Globular Clusters in 1939, the first of three catalogues she completed, with a fourth in the works at the time of her death.
In addition to her work on variable stars in globular clusters, Hogg used the period-luminosity relationship of Cepheid variable stars to enhance the understanding of the Milky Way Galaxy's age and structure. During the late 1930s, Hogg became one of the first astronomers to travel and work around the world to advance her research, as the globular clusters she was observing were best seen from the southern hemisphere. From 1939 to 1941, Hogg returned to America to serve as the president of the American Association of Variable Star Observers and the acting chair of Mount Holyoke's astronomy department. Upon returning to the David Dunlap Observatory, she took on teaching duties at the University of Toronto as a result of male staff being away due to World War II. Retaining her position after the men returned from war, Hogg advanced to assistant professor in 1951, associate professor in 1955, full professor in 1957, professor emerita in 1976 upon her retirement. Over her research career Hogg published more than 200 papers, was a leading authority in astronomy.
Not limiting herself to publishing her astronomical speciality of variable stars in globular clusters, Hogg published on the history of astronomy through her column "Out of Old Books", published in the Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada. She was known for the 30 years she spent writing her weekly column "With the Stars", published in the Toronto Star. In addition, Hogg popularized astronomy with her book The Stars Belong to Everyone in 1976, an eight-show television series on Canadian educational television in 1970, her role as founding president of the Canadian Astronomical Society, she actively supported women to pursue science. In addition to her advocacy and awareness work, "Helen presided over several Canadian astronomical and scientific organizations", "served on the board of directors of Bell Telephone Company of Canada from 1968 to 1978", she was the director of the National Science Foundation's astronomy program, in this position she "helped determine sites for the National Radio Astronomy Observatory and for Kitt Peak National Observatory" in 1955.
In 1960, "she became the first woman president
LeBreton Flats is a neighbourhood in Somerset Ward in central Ottawa, Canada. It lies to the west of Centretown neighbourhood, to the north of Centretown West; the Ottawa River forms the western and northern limit, with the western side being a wider area of the river known as Nepean Bay. A residential area, much of the northern portion of the Flats is now occupied by the Canadian War Museum and the National Holocaust Monument. Construction of the Pimisi station of the city's new light rail transit system is underway and slated for completion in late 2018. About half of the total area, on the south side of the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway, is undergoing redevelopment; the large RendezVous LeBreton project, which includes a new municipal library and NHL hockey arena, is planned to start construction in 2019. The population was 373, up from 57 in 2006 and 50 in 2001. LeBreton Flats was named after Lieutenant John LeBreton, one of Nepean Township's first settlers and a hero of the War of 1812, as an officer in the Royal Newfoundland Regiment and between April and October 1812 he acted as adjutant to the Voltigeurs Canadiens.
LeBreton purchased the area in 1820, a purchase, described as for the purpose of capitalizing on the construction of the planned Rideau Canal. The account, according to his detractors, goes. In 1820, LeBreton lived at the community of Britannia, west of Ottawa and overheard Lord Dalhousie explain that the intended plan for the Rideau Canal was from Dow's Lake to the Chaudière Falls, directly crossing the flats. LeBreton bought for the land for £ 499. LeBreton offered to sell the land to Dalhousie for £3000. Dalhousie recognized LeBreton's land speculation and was so infuriated he decided to move the canal to Entrance Bay, the current location where the canal enters into the Ottawa River; this raised the cost of the canal, as it was a longer route and additional locks were now required. At the same time, Dalhousie purchased neighbouring Barracks Hill as part of the agreement, which would become Parliament Hill. For his part, LeBreton vigorously maintained that he had purchased the land at a public auction and that he had been grievously wronged by Dalhousie and those in the community who took the Governor General's side.
LeBreton claimed he was one of the few to grasp the commercial value of the flats and that he had begun to make offers to acquire land there as early as 1818, well before the canal was approved or any route revealed. LeBreton presented Dalhousie with a lengthy written defence against the allegations; these arguments Dalhousie somewhat peremptorily dismissed, entrenching the notion of LeBreton as a swindler in local legend. By the mid-19th century, LeBreton Flats developed into a mixed community to serve the lumber mills on the nearby Chaudière and Victoria islands. A rail line came in with a station and yards, industries developed in turn. There was housing for both the workers and owners, as well as hotels and taverns; the area was ravaged by the Great Fire of 1900, which had started across the river in Hull, but crossed over by way of the great stacks of piled lumber on the islands. The fire destroyed the neighbourhood; the area was rebuilt, but the lumber barons relocated their dwellings up into the city proper above the escarpment, leaving the workers as the remaining Flats' residents.
In the 1960s, expropriation occurred in order to make room for redevelopment, including offices for the Government of Canada. Ottawa Valley artist Ralph Wallace Burton documented the neighbourhood in his Lebreton Flats series of oil sketches, "working just ahead of the demolition crews"; as a result of disputes over the use of the land and soil contamination from the previous industrial uses, the land remained vacant for over forty years. It was used in the winter for piling snow, removed from Ottawa streets, with the pile remaining well into the late spring; as a result of the runoff from this snowpile, the land became more contaminated. Because of this, it was found that all of the area's topsoil would have to be removed in order for redevelopment to proceed, but the ownership had to be consolidated, since the Government of Canada, the former Regional Municipality of Ottawa-Carleton government, the City of Ottawa were all landowners; this situation was remedied with a federal agency called the National Capital Commission acquiring all title to the land.
In May 2005, the new home for the Canadian War Museum was opened on LeBreton Flats as the first component of redevelopment. There are plans to use the remainder of the site for housing, commercial space and parkland; the southern part of LeBreton Flats between Albert Street and Nanny Goat Hill escaped the expropriation of the 1960s. In this area, brick houses and townhouses built following the 1900 fire still exist alongside row housing built in the 1970s; the portion of Lorne Avenue which lies below Nanny Goat Hill is an example of the housing which filled LeBreton prior to the 1960s and is a Heritage District designated by the City of Ottawa. The western portion of the Transitway runs through LeBreton Flats, served by Lebreton Station; the Transitway will be replaced by light rail, planned for launch in spring 2019. As of the Canada 2006 Census, 57 people were living in LeBreton Flats; the portion of LeBreton Flats, expropriated and left vacant in the 1960s welcomed its first residents in 2008, as the first condominium building constructed in the first phase of the redevelopment neared completion.
In 2015, the NCC put out
Department of Canadian Heritage
The Department of Canadian Heritage, or Canadian Heritage, is the department of the Government of Canada that has roles and responsibilities related to initiatives that promote and support "Canadian identity and values, cultural development, heritage". To fulfill these tasks, the department coordinates a portfolio of several agencies and corporations that operate in a similar area of interest. While the roles and responsibilities of the Department of Canadian Heritage have remained constant over the years, the department and composition of its portfolio remain in flux due to continuing structural changes. Headquartered in the Jules Léger Building in Terrasses de la Chaudière, Quebec, across the Ottawa River from the Canadian capital of Ottawa, the Department of Canadian Heritage was founded on June 25, 1993, it is an umbrella organization that has one of the largest portfolios in the Canadian federal government. The organizations in the portfolio support the Department of Canadian Heritage in the pursuit of its priorities while striving to achieve their individual mandates.
In addition to coordinating with the organizations in its portfolio, the Department of Canadian Heritage partners with provincial and territorial governments to organize and oversee visits from the Queen of Canada and other members of the royal family. In 2018, the department had a budget of $3.9 billion. The Department of Canadian Heritage is managed by a Deputy Minister Hélène Laurendeau, with support from an Associate Deputy Minister Isabelle Mondou. Activities at the department are overseen by several senior officials. At the top is the Minister of Heritage and Multiculturalism Pablo Rodríguez, who gets reports directly from the Department of Canadian Heritage. Activities related to official languages and the French television network,TV5, are handled by the Minister of Tourism, Official Languages and La Francophonie; this position is held by Mélanie Joly. Matters related to Canadian sports and services are handled by the Minister of Science and Sport, Kristy Duncan; the department is divided into four different areas that each have their own Assistant Deputy Minister.
The four sectors and their Assistant Deputy Ministers are: Sports, Major Events and Commemorations, administered by the Assistant Deputy Minister, Andrew Campbell Citizenship and Regions, managed by Assistant Deputy Minister, Charles Slowey Cultural Affairs, lead by Senior Assistant Deputy Minister, Jean-Stéphane Piché Strategic policy and Corporate Affairs, overseen by Assistant Deputy Minister, David Dendooven The portfolio of the Department of Canadian Heritage consists of two special operating agencies, four departmental agencies, twelve Crown corporations, one administrative tribunal. They all report to Parliament through the same Minister; the Canadian Conservation Institute and the Canadian Heritage Information Network are the two special operating agencies in the portfolio. The four departmental agencies in the portfolio are Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission and Archives Canada, the National Battlefields Commission, the National Film Board of Canada; the following Crown corporations are part of the portfolio: Canada Council for the Arts Canadian Science and Technology Museums Corporation Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Canadian Museum for Human Rights Canadian Museum of History Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21 Canadian Museum of Nature Canadian Race Relations Foundation National Arts Centre National Capital Commission National Gallery of Canada Telefilm CanadaThe only administrative tribunal in the portfolio is called the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board.
The Department of Canadian Heritage gives out $1.2 billion in grants annually. Funding is available for programs that contribute to the objectives of the Department of Canadian Heritage; these departmental objectives include those that relate to supporting culture, heritage and Canada's official languages. The Department of Canadian Heritage requires that application forms be submitted by the deadlines that are specified under the specific funding program's application guidelines in order to be considered for financial support. A confirmation notice is sent by the department within two weeks of getting an application, a decision on whether funding will be granted or not is made within thirteen to thirty weeks, depending on the funding program; the first payment is made on or before the fourth week after the Department of Canadian Heritage has sent out a written notice that an application has been approved. The Department of Canadian Heritage provides funds for the following programs: Aboriginal People's Program Athlete Assistance Program Building Communities Through Arts and Heritage Canada Arts Presentation Fund Canada Arts Training Fund Canada Book Fund Canada Cultural Investment Fund Canada Cultural Spaces Fund Canada History Fund Canada Media Fund Canada Music Fund Canada Periodical Fund Canada Travelling Exhibitions Indemnification Program Canada Conservation Institute internship programs Canada Film or Video Production Tax Credit Celebrate Canada Commemorate Canada Community Support and Anti-Racism Initiatives Program Court Challenges Program Creative Export Canada Destination Clic- French Enrichment Bursary Program Documentary Heritage Community Program Economic Development Initiative Exchanges Canada Explore - Second Language Bursary Program Film or Video Production Services Tax Credit Movable Cultural Property Grants Museums Assistance Program Odyssey- Language Assistance Program Official Languages Funding Programs Sport Canada Hosting Program Sport Support Program Young Ca
Shaw Centre (Ottawa)
The Shaw Centre the Ottawa Convention Centre, is located in downtown Ottawa, Canada. It opened in April 2011. In October 2014, the Ottawa Convention Shaw Communications. Entered a ten-year naming right agreement that saw the venue renamed to the Shaw Centre; the Centre replaces the Ottawa Congress Centre, which opened in 1983 and is built on the site of the Ottawa Congress Centre building, demolished in 2008-2009. The Centre is located on Colonel By Drive, just south of Rideau Street; the facility is owned by the Ontario provincial government. The Shaw Centre has each with a view of the Rideau Canal and downtown area; the first level features a large lobby, as well as the Wall of Three Rivers artwork, made of reclaimed logs and acts as a tribute to Ottawa history. This floor consists of eight meeting rooms, an executive boardroom, a coat room, a kitchen studio and direct indoor access to parking lots; the second level consists of 15 meeting rooms that are equipped with the latest technology, a pre-function area of over 19,806 sq. ft. / 1,840 sq. m. a dedicated show office, a corporate business centre, a coat room, bridges that link the Shaw Centre to the Westin hotel and the Rideau Centre.
The third level is a large multipurpose hall and can accommodate up to 6,260 people theatre-style, 4,600 people banquet-style, or up to 400 10'x10' booth displays. The fourth level is a ballroom, reserved for conferences, or weddings; the Shaw Centre was built to be as environmentally friendly as possible, in January 2013, was awarded LEED Gold certification. LEED is a green building rating system developed by the U. S Green Building Council in 1998, it is based on a points system, which places the building in one of four categories – Certified, Silver and Platinum – the latter being the highest achievement of environmental friendliness. There are 70 possible LEED points; these points are divided into five different categories: Sustainable Site Development, Water Efficiency, Energy Efficiency, Material Selection and Indoor Environmental Quality. The OCC saves 969,000 gallons of water each year by harvesting rainwater from the roof, stored in a cistern below the building; this water is used to flush restroom toilets.
97% of materials from the demolished Congress Centre were diverted from landfill. The Shaw Centre used recycled steel to build the roof trusses, logs from the bottom of the Ottawa River to make the Wall of Three Rivers; because of its panoramic glass design, the OCC saves energy by letting in natural daylight. In May 2013, the Shaw Centre achieved AIPC Quality Standards Gold Certification with the successful completion of an audit by the designated external auditor for AIPC; the Shaw Centre joined a group of 20 AIPC convention centres worldwide that have achieved this level of international certification. In July 2014, the Shaw Centre finished in a tie for second place for the title of "World’s Best Convention Centre", an award handed out by the International Association of Congress Centres; the Shaw Centre was among 27 finalists vying for the award at the 2014 AIPC Annual Conference in Berlin, Germany. The Cairns Convention Centre won the title, followed by the Ottawa Convention Centre and the Palais des Congrès de Montréal.
The project's cost was CA$170 million, for a four-level 192,000 square feet facility. The cost was shared by three levels of government. $50 million came from the Canadian government, $50 million from the Ontario government, $40 million from the City of Ottawa and the remainder of $30 million was borrowed by the centre itself. The new building features a large glass facade on the Colonel By Drive front. From the outside, the entrance from the street is visible and the internal escalators are visible; the architect is Ritchard Brisbin of BBB Architects Ottawa Inc. While it has four levels of convention space, it is seven storeys in height; as part of the new project, the name was changed to the Ottawa Convention Centre. According to the centre's chairman, the former title of "congress" was confusing to American convention planners; the Congress Centre building was designed by Bemi & Associates Architects in 1982. It had 70,000 square feet of exhibition space; the building was built on former railways lands, vacated when the main Ottawa train station was moved to Alta Vista Drive outside of downtown.
The building was opened by Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau. The Congress Centre was used for public exhibitions and music concerts, it could support audience sizes of up to a few thousand. National Career Development Conference - January 2014 Official website
Ottawa station, or Ottawa Train Station, is a Via Rail station in Ottawa, Canada. It is located at 200 Tremblay Road and serves inter-city trains connecting it to Toronto and Montreal. OC Transpo's bus routes 61 and 62 carries railway passengers west into the city centre or east to St-Laurent station; the adjacent former Bus Transitway station, Train Station, will reopen in 2019 as the Confederation Line station named Tremblay station. The station was designed by John B. Parkin & Associates and was built in 1966, it won a Massey Medal for architecture in 1967. In 2000, the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada named the station as one of the top 500 buildings produced in Canada during the last millennium. Ottawa's trains once came into the large downtown Union Station a short distance from the Parliament buildings, but with the replacement of the railway tracks beside the Rideau Canal with the National Capital Commission’s Colonel By Drive scenic parkway, the former station has been converted into the Government Conference Centre.
Per a sign located inside the station: "The Ottawa Station was completed in 1966 as part of a plan for the relocation and consolidation of many railway lines built between 1854 and 1916. The new arrangement was based on the plans of the noted urban planner, Jacques Greber, was constructed by the National Capital Commission; the Canadian National Railway and the Canadian Pacific railway are owners and operators of the new installations." The station is protected under the Heritage Railway Stations Protection Act since 1996. It "is a glass and steel, International style railway station The VIA Rail Station at Ottawa is one of the finest examples of the International style in Canadian architecture." A $21.7 million renovation project started late 2016. The project will add an elevator in the spiral ramp and at track 3 and 4, a levelled platform for track 1, roof improvements. Air France–KLM runs a connecting shuttle bus from this station to Montréal–Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport, exclusive for the airline's customers only.
As of 2016 Air-France KLM has three daily bus services between those cities. Swiss International Air Lines operated its Swissbus service from Ottawa Railway Station to Dorval Airport for Swiss customers. Media related to Ottawa Train Station at Wikimedia Commons Ottawa Regional Society of Architects -- Architecture of the Ottawa Train Station Photos of Ottawa Train Station Via Rail station page for Ottawa station
The O-Train is a light rapid transit transit system in Ottawa, Canada operated by OC Transpo. It has one line in operation, the diesel-powered Trillium Line, with a second line, the electrically-operated Confederation Line, under construction and set to open in early 2019; the system's name was proposed by Acart Communications, an Ottawa advertising agency working for OC Transpo. The name "O-Train" was based on the classic Duke Ellington signature tune "Take the'A' Train", which refers to the New York City Subway's A train; because Ottawa is a bilingual city, the name had to work in both English and French. In French, it is pronounced to au train, as in to travel "by train", it was adopted soon after. From its inception until 2014, the term "O-Train" referred to the north-south diesel line. With the construction of a second line, the east/west Confederation Line, the O-Train branding was extended to both rail transit services and the original service was renamed as the Trillium Line; the O-Train consists of two grade-separated lines, one operational and one forthcoming: The Trillium Line is a single-track, 8 km diesel light rail line running north to south from Bayview to Greenboro connecting to the Ottawa Transitway at each terminus.
Trains pass each other on the single track via three passing zones, two of which are between stations and the third of, located at Carleton. The Confederation Line is an electric light rail line under construction running east-west from Blair to Tunney's Pasture connecting to the Ottawa Transitway at each terminus and with the Trillium Line at Bayview. With the exception of three underground downtown stations, the line will run on the surface using former Transitway bus rapid transit infrastructure; the Trillium Line, the original O-Train line, was introduced in 2001 as a pilot project to provide an alternative to the busways on which Ottawa had long depended for its high-grade transit service. The system uses low-floor diesel multiple unit trains, it is considered a mainline railway despite its use for local public transport purposes, is more like an urban railway rather than a metro or tramway. It is described as ‘light rail’ because there were plans to extend it into Ottawa’s downtown as a tramway-like service, because the original Bombardier Talent trains are much smaller and lighter than most mainline trains in North America, do not meet the Association of American Railroads' standards for crash strength.
On July 12, 2006, Ottawa City Council voted in favour of awarding the North-South expansion to the Siemens/PCL/Dufferin design team. The proposed extension, not undertaken, would have replaced the Trillium Line with an electric LRT system running on double track. According to the plan, the line was to be extended east from its current northern terminus to run through LeBreton Flats and downtown Ottawa as far as the University of Ottawa, south-west from its Greenboro terminus to the growing Riverside South community and Barrhaven. Much of the route would have run through the undeveloped Riverside South area to allow a large new suburb to be constructed in the area south of the airport; the line would not have connected to the airport. Construction of the extension was scheduled to begin in the autumn of 2006, resulting in the shutdown of operations in May 2007, been completed in autumn 2009 with operations resuming under the new systems and rolling stock; the diesel-powered Talents would have been replaced with electric trams more suitable for on-street operation in the downtown area the Siemens S70 Avanto.
Other bids had proposed a Kinki Sharyo tram. With the use of electric power, greater frequency, street-level running in central Ottawa, the expanded system would have borne much more resemblance to the urban tramways referred to by the phrase ‘light rail’ than does the pilot project; the estimated cost of the North-South expansion would have been just under $780 million, making the project the largest in the city's history since the Rideau Canal project. The federal and provincial governments had each promised $200 million for the expansion, with the city contributing the remainder of the cost using funds from various sources including the provincial gasoline tax, the city's transit reserve fund, the Provincial Transportation Infrastructure Grant. 4.5% of the total project cost was expected to come from the property tax base. The city requested studies on an extension of the railway from the proposed University of Ottawa terminus through to Hurdman Station; the north-south expansion planning process became a source of great controversy.
It was a major issue in the 2006 municipal election. The incumbent mayor Bob Chiarelli had long been the main advocate for light rail in Ottawa. Terry Kilrea, who finished second to Chiarelli in the 2003 municipal election and ran for mayor in 2006, believed the plan was vastly too expensive and would be a safety hazard for Ottawa drivers, he called for the entire light rail project to be scrapped. Mayoral candidate Alex Munter supported light rail, but argued that the plan would do little to meet Ottawa's transit needs and that the true final expense