• MacGregor: A Notre-Dame lesson – lives change, and buildings must too

    Ten years ago, I stood in line for an hour and a half outside the Notre-Dame Cathedral in Paris, nervous that I would never know how to live in a French city.
    This was part of what I’d been told people did when they ran off with a Frenchman: They bought used books from stands along the Seine, gazed up from the foot of the Eiffel Tower, ran their hands along the cold stones of ancient buildings (selfies had barely been invented; experiences were still tactile). But I’ll admit that whe
  • Bagnall: Is SNC-Lavalin technically incompetent? Hardly — but here's what the city needs to explain

    It’s difficult to know which is more bizarre — the idea that SNC-Lavalin isn’t qualified technically to manage a piece of the second stage of the city’s light rail transit project, or that City of Ottawa officials won’t offer a definitive statement that it is.
    When the city revealed two months ago that TransitNEXT — a unit of SNC-Lavalin — was its preferred bidder for managing the $1.6-billion extension of the Trillium Line to the airport and beyond, few
  • Body of missing man Ian Lambert found Wednesday in Aylmer

    Gatineau police officers have identified a body found in Aylmer on Wednesday evening as that of Ian Lambert, who has been missing since Feb. 16.
    Lambert, 46, was last seen leaving a gathering in the Plateau neighbourhood on foot. Friends, family and community groups have been searching for him ever since.
    According to Gatineau police, an area resident reported finding a body near a bike path in the Aylmer area around 7:45 p.m. on Wednesday. When police arrived, they found the body and erected a
  • Brother of homicide victim Mohamed Najdi charged with attempted murder in revenge plot

    A brother for a brother.
    Ottawa police guns and gangs detectives have arrested Hussein Najdi, 27, and charged him in a plot to exact revenge for his brother’s death – allegedly targeting the brother of a man acquitted of killing Mohamed Najdi, this newspaper has learned.
    Hussein Najdi was arrested Wednesday evening and appeared in court early Thursday where he was charged with attempted murder and several firearms offences.
    Police also executed a search warrant at Hussein Najdi&rsquo
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  • Adam: Ontario government should consider sobering facts about alcohol

    It is unfathomable how the Doug Ford government can set the stage for more alcohol consumption in Ontario, then ignore the social consequences of drinking and its larger impact on society. In a way, last week’s provincial budget was more about drinking than about any fiscal policy designed to balance the budget or spur economic growth.
    A slew of changes unveiled in the budget would see bars, restaurants and golf courses selling alcohol from 9 a.m. on, instead of 11 a.m. Municipalities woul
  • Lauren Richards took her own life at 26. She left behind devastated loved ones and a haunting question

    Lauren Richards died on Feb. 21 by suicide. 
    The incident, outlined in cryptic terms by authorities, made the news because Richards died in a public place. We could tell you where and how, but the Canadian Psychiatric Association in its guidelines for journalists cautions against reporting on the details. Suicide contagion is real.
    Richards’ name has never been released. But her family and friends say there is a story behind the few bare paragraphs in a press release, a tale of unbear
  • Man fatally shot on York Street early Thursday

    A man in his 20s was pronounced dead early Thursday and another man is in custody after police responded to a shooting on York Street.
    The major crime unit is investigating but no charges have been laid against the man in custody in connection to what appears to be a targeted shooting. Neither man has been identified.
    Officers responded to York Street near Sussex Drive at about 2 a.m. Paramedics tried to revive the man but he succumbed in the hospital.
    Officers immediately searched the area and
  • '25 to 50 mm are possible': Rainfall warning in effect for Ottawa area

    There’s a lot of rain on the way.
    Environment Canada has issued a rain warning, forecasting that up to 50 mm could fall by Friday evening. The rain is expected to be heavy at times and the weather office is warning that the ground, still frozen in places, may not be able to absorb everything that falls.
    This warning should not be taken lightly: “Localized flooding in low-lying areas is possible. Heavy downpours can cause flash floods and water pooling on roads. Keep children and pets
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  • Suicide policies in Canada and beyond: What's working and what needs to change

    Between 70 and 80 people take their own lives in Ottawa every year.
    Dr. Simon Hatcher, a psychiatrist and researcher in clinical epidemiology at The Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, said he believes it’s possible to reduce that number by 20 per cent within five years.
    “It’s been done before. It’s not rocket science,” he says, pointing to the example of the Nuremberg model, a protocol first used in Germany which has now spread all over Europe and beyond. “I&
  • Cappies review: All Saints Catholic High School presents The Drowsy Chaperone

    Show #14: The Drowsy Chaperone
    Where: All Saints Catholic High School
    Director: Shawna Pasini
    Zaina Khan, CriticElmwood School
    Picture this: you’re “sitting in a darkened theatre waiting for the show to begin.” As the “curtain is going up,” you see a mundane man in a chair — isolated, lonely, depressed — with a painfully pathetic life and only his favourite record by his side. But wait … do “you hear that static?” It sounds like All Sa
  • Athens man faces charges after police find driver asleep at the wheel

    An Athens man face impaired charges after police found a man asleep at the wheel with the engine revving.
    The Leeds detachment of the Ontario Provincial Police came across the vehicle on County Road 42 in Athens township. The driver was arrested for impaired driving.
    Tyler Astleford, 31, is to appear at the Brockville Court of Justice on May 10. He faces a further charge under the Cannabis Control Act for having cannabis readily available.
    After claiming money was stolen
  • After claiming money was stolen from his car, Petawawa man faces theft charge

    A Petawawa man who claimed a significant amount of money was stolen from his vehicle has been charged with public mischief and theft over $5,000.
    Ontario Provincial Police said they began investigating in early April after an unspecified, but “sizeable” sum was reported stolen. The alleged victim told police the cash collected for a minor hockey event had been stolen from his vehicle. After an investigation, police concluded that the theft had not occurred.
    Michael Edward Landry, 37,
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  • Conservation authorities ponder how to prevent flooding with less funding

    As Ottawa braces for a rainy weekend and possible flooding, watershed management agencies responsible for protecting people and property from floods are contemplating how to whittle down their budgets in the face of provincial cuts.
    Ontario’s 36 conservation authorities monitor water levels and weather forecasts, operate dams and dikes, warn residents and municipalities of flooding risks and co-ordinate with emergency responders.
    The authorities are either charitable or nonprofit organizat
  • 99 Rideau McDonald's no longer open 24 hours

    The McDonald’s restaurant at 99 Rideau St. will no longer be open 24 hours a day following numerous complaints to police, including a sexual assault that sent one woman to hospital.
    In a statement released by McDonald’s corporate relations, owner Adeel Hashmi said starting Wednesday its new operating hours of the restaurant near the Rideau Centre mall would be 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.
    “As a local business owner, I too am concerned with issues in our neighbourhood. We all deserve a saf
  • Eyewitness 'uncertain' of details after reading media reports of Montsion trial

    A key Crown eyewitness grew increasingly uncertain over what exactly she saw on July 24, 2016, after reading news reports of the fatal arrest of Abdirahman Abdi and the manslaughter and assault charges against Const. Daniel Montsion.
    Wendy Dunford testified Wednesday she kept up with the case by reading various news reports that were “hard to avoid” since the incident and said she learned critical details of the ongoing trial since it opened in early February.
    She unknowingly contrav
  • What's open and closed this Easter long weekend

    We will publish a newspaper on Good Friday, although our offices will be closed for the day. We will not publish on Easter Monday, but our offices will be open.
    Here’s what else is open and closed this Easter weekend:
    Costco:Friday, April 19: ClosedSunday, April 21: Closed
    Metro:Store hours vary depending on location. Specific store hours can be found through Metro’s store locator.
    Loblaws:Store hours vary depending on location. Specific store hours can be found through the L
  • Lawyer urges jurors at St. Amour inquest to call jail hanging a homicide

    Suicide or homicide?
    That’s the key question facing jurors at the inquest into the hanging death of Justin St. Amour at the Ottawa jail as they began their deliberations Wednesday afternoon.
    It’s extremely rare for coroner’s juries to make a finding of homicide, but lawyer Paul Champ, who represents the St. Amour family, said it was justified in this case.
    Guards at the jail knew St. Amour was threatening suicide and had seen him made a noose in a rope that he had braided from
  • Man who killed Ottawa cyclist obstructed justice because he feared racist police, avoids jail time

    An Ottawa landscaper who covered his tracks and hid from police after a deadly hit-and-run has been spared jail time by a judge who accepted his explanation that a fear of turning himself in was heightened because he’s a “man of colour” afraid of racist police.
    In 2015, Andy Nevin, 39, was cycling along Leitrim Road when Deinsberg St-Hilaire’s pickup truck smashed into him. St-Hilaire was found not guilty of dangerous driving causing death in 2018, but pleaded guilty to o
  • City creates 'action plan' after scathing audit of leasing unit

    Reeling from an embarrassing audit of city leasing, management has appointed another worker to run the leasing unit, increased staff training and made plans to hire an advisor to help with a new leasing policy.
    In a memo sent to council Wednesday, corporate services general manager Marian Simulik and planning general manager Stephen Willis said Nicholas Delahousse had been appointed acting manager of the leasing unit on April 1. He previously worked on land acquisitions for the LRT project and,
  • 'A level of concern' as Ottawa and Gatineau prepare for potential flooding this weekend

    Gatineau and Ottawa are girding for flooding with weekend rain and melting snow expected to swell the Ottawa River.
    “There is a level of concern with respect to increasing water levels throughout the Ottawa River watershed and the city is absolutely preparing for that eventuality,” according to Ottawa’s head of emergency management, Pierre Poirier.
    Poirier said the city was prepared for potential flooding in many of the low-lying neighbourhoods across Ottawa, including Constanc
  • NAC goes to Europe to spread the good word about Canada's 'best kept secret'

    Canada is known around the world for hockey, maple syrup and pop stars such as Drake and Justin Bieber.
    But the National Arts Centre is hoping to expand that perception of our culture by sending the NAC Orchestra on a major European tour next month that will not only showcase the musical abilities of the orchestra and its guest soloists, but also introduce the work of Canada’s contemporary classical composers.Part of the orchestra’s 50th-anniversary celebrations, the journey runs fro
  • Dog poop (and plastic bags) coming to Ottawa green bins by Canada Day

    The company that runs the organics-processing plant on Hawthorne Road says it’s on track to have its new equipment ready to accept plastic bags by Canada Day.
    Michael Leopold, general manager of Renewi Canada (formerly Orgaworld), said the company has told the city it will be ready to roll for the new program on July 1.
    “We’re well on pace for that,” Leopold said Wednesday.
    The city hasn’t announced the exact date when people can start tossing plastic bags and dog f
  • Charlie Bouchard steps down from Lockheed Martin Canada’s top job

    Charles Bouchard announced his decision Wednesday to retire as Chief Executive, Lockheed Martin Canada effective April 30. Bouchard, a retired lieutenant general, served in the role for nearly six years. He had a 37-year career in the Royal Canadian Air Force.
    “I have thoroughly enjoyed serving Lockheed Martin Canada and Lockheed Martin Corporation and while the time has come for me to retire, I will remain an ardent supporter and advocate of the work Lockheed Martin does to deliver the be
  • Joshua Boyle's criminal trial could be put on hold for months

    The trial of former Afghanistan hostage Joshua Boyle could be put on hold for months so that the Supreme Court of Canada can decide whether to hear an appeal of a judge’s ruling in the case.
    That ruling, issued Wednesday by Ontario Court Justice Peter K. Doody, opened the door to a limited number of defence questions about the sexual history of Caitlan Coleman, Boyle’s estranged wife, and the key Crown witness in the case.
    Doody ruled that defence lawyer Lawrence Greenspon could ask
  • 'This was truly unexpected': Renfrew fears for paramedic service

    For years, Renfrew County’s paramedic service has been rewriting the book on how to deliver health care in rural areas with the help of drones, high-tech innovation and game-changing ideas.
    The paramedic service has drawn attention from around the world for thinking outside the box. It delivers everything from floatation devices to defibrillators by drone, and it digitally monitors the health of chronically ill patients in their homes. In mostly rural Renfrew County, paramedics also fill a
  • Impaired, dangerous driving charges after Queensway tip

    Police are thanking a Good Samaritan for calling in “dangerous” driving on the Queensway after laying charges against a motorist alleged to have blown almost three times the legal limit when pulled over Tuesday afternoon.
    Ottawa OPP officers responded to a witness’s report that a vehicle was travelling erratically on the westbound highway just after 1 p.m.
    Officers “safely intercepted” the vehicle on March Road.
    Elena Melekhovets, 51, is charged with dangerous drivi
  • Arrest made in pepper-spray robbery on Bank Street

    Thanks to an anonymous tip, police report they’ve collared a suspect in a Bank Street robbery in which a loss prevention officer was pepper-sprayed last month.
    Joshua Palmer-Waugh, 27, is charged with robbery, administering a noxious substance, assault with a weapon, carrying a concealed weapon, possession of a weapon, possession of a prohibited weapon, escape lawful custody and breach of recognizance.
    He appeared in court Wednesday.
    Police officers were called to a store south of Walkley
  • Anderson: Rage, rejection and reverence – the passion of Notre-Dame

    In Cassis, a normally bustling seaside resort in the south of France, the streets were deserted.  During the long and tense evening of April 15, when the fate of Notre-Dame de Paris hung in the balance, the silence was unearthly: the hiss and suck of the waves, normally pushed to the back of consciousness, seemed unnaturally loud. There were no pedestrians to sidle past, and no cars on the narrow streets. Blue light shone through the village’s windows as families clustered around thei
  • Ottawa man accused of sexually assaulting teen girls

    A 34-year-old Ottawa man is facing charges after police launched an investigation into allegations he sexually assaulted two young girls in their teens in 2008-9 and in 2016.
    Donald McNeil was charged Jan. 3 with two counts of sexual assault and one count of sexual interference, police said in a release Wednesday. He’s in custody after an allegation that he breached the conditions of his release, police said.
    Detectives with the sexual assault and child abuse section, who launched their in
  • Ottawa Jeopardy! contestant has misfortune of playing one of game's all-time greatest

    Answer: What is the worst time to finally make it on Jeopardy!?
    People have been telling Megan McLeod she should be on the long-running game show since her Reach for the Top days at Nepean High School. She didn’t know she would be competing against “maybe the best player who has ever played the game.”
    In an episode that was shot in February but aired Monday, McLeod went up against streaking pro sports gambler James Holzhauer who has a take-no-prisoners style of play honed by ri
  • Glavin: Notre-Dame's long story of redemption

    It is a peculiar thing, the way some stories are told and retold down through the ages, the way history coils around itself and unspools again as the Earth hurtles through the firmament. And every now and then, humanity quietly redeems itself in some small way, as it did this week, when a horrific cloud of smoke blackened the skies above the 4th arrondissement of Paris.
    We need to start about 3,000 years ago, in the vicinity of what is now the Palestinian village of Nabi Samwil, just a few kilom
  • Cohen: An Albertan's scorn for Trudeau didn't make him go away

    Six years ago, I ran into a prominent Conservative at one of those boring diplomatic receptions in Ottawa. He was unusually animated that day, as if shaken by some biblical reordering of the natural universe, like an earthquake or volcano, threatening the end of the world. Then again, given his Vesuvian anger, it could have been all those things.
    A few days earlier, on April 13, 2013, Justin Trudeau had become leader of the Liberal Party of Canada. For my friend, this seemed a great abnormality,
  • Flood warning on Ottawa River with rapid rise likely this weekend

    Gatineau is girding for flooding with weekend rain and melting snow expected to swell the Ottawa River.
    The Ottawa River Regulation Planning Board warns that with up to 55 mm of rain forecast to start falling Thursday and snowmelt runoff, “flows and levels along the Ottawa River are expected to rise rapidly into the coming weekend.”
    The City of Gatineau said that water levels are expected to pass “minor” flooding levels over the Easter weekend and could rise further depen
  • Ottawa monastery's Buddha statue vandalized for the third time

    Members of a Heron Road Buddhist community say they are fearful after a statue of the Buddha was vandalized for the third time.
    A surveillance camera caught a vandal hitting the statue with a piece of wood early Wednesday morning, the monastery’s chief incumbent monk Rev. Nugegalayaye Jinananda Thero said.
    On the wood was written the First Commandment from the Bible: Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
    Police confirmed they were called to a mischief complaint at the monastery Wednesda
  • More than 300 teacher jobs at risk in Ottawa public schools due to provincial cuts to education

    Ottawa’s largest school board estimates the provincial government’s plan to increase class sizes and cut some programs will shave about $32 million from its nearly billion-dollar budget.
    The largest single cut is to high school teachers. Fewer would be required if the province implements a plan to increase the average class size from 22 to 28. High-school students would also have to take mandatory online courses, which would have an average class size of 35.
    Class sizes in Grades 4 t
  • The Grizzlies: Locals star in inspiring film that confronts issues facing Indigenous communities

    The Grizzlies
    Directed by Miranda de Pencier
    Opens Friday, April 19 at Scotiabank Theatre Ottawa (formerly SilverCity Gloucester)
    The inspiring true story of a lacrosse team from Kugluktuk, Nunavut is portrayed in the powerful new Canadian film, The Grizzlies, which also provides an unflinching look at many of the issues that affect Indigenous communities across the country. The film opens in Ottawa — and stars two local actors — and other major cities on Friday, with a wider release
  • Pack your shades for the morning commute (and avoid these closures)

    There’s a traffic hazard we delight in telling you about: brilliant sunshine.
    One motorist tweeted from the Queensway Wednesday morning that skies were so bright, you gotta wear shades.
    “Expect some slowness,” as your fellow motorists squint at the morning sun.
    It won’t last long and the traffic forecast was otherwise sunny as the commute got underway with just a few washed out roads remaining from the weekend’s wet weather.
    Carp Road is closed between Kinburn to Ga
  • 'Ecstatic but exhausted': Rawlson King ready to get to work as Ottawa's first black city councillor

    Rideau-Rockcliffe Coun. Rawlson King hardly has time to get settled in at city hall.
    Freshly elected to city council, King only has days to learn about municipal governance, where new councillors usually have weeks before a new term begins. He’ll also need to decide on which committees he would like to sit, though ultimately the committee membership is up to council. He’ll also need to hire staff for his office.
    “I feel ecstatic but exhausted,” King said Tuesday during a
  • Sunshine, a high of 14 C and then a string of soggy days

    Get out and enjoy the sunshine before the risk of rain returns and remains through the weekend.
    Wednesday is sunny with a high of 14 C and UV index — remember those? — of 6 or high.
    The clouds roll in overnight with a few showers beginning after midnight and ending in the morning. The low is 3 C.
    For Thursday, expect cloudy skies and rain beginning in the afternoon, easterly winds at 20 km/h become southerly as the high reaches 15 C.
    Overnight, the forecast is for a 60 per cent chanc
  • Ottawa's English public school board to lose millions in funding due to provincial cuts to education

    Ottawa’s largest school board estimates the provincial government’s plan to increase class sizes and cut some programs will shave about $32 million from its nearly billion-dollar budget.
    The largest single cut is to high school teachers. Fewer would be required if the province implements a plan to increase the average class size from 22 to 28. High-school students would also have to take mandatory online courses, which would have an average class size of 35.
    Class sizes in Grades 4 t
  • ER visits for suicidal behaviour among kids are up, but why?

    There has been a 53-per-cent increase in the number of CHEO emergency department mental health visits in the past four years in which suicidal ideation or suicide attempt was the primary diagnosis.
    The 2014-18 CHEO figures, released upon a request from this newspaper, come in the wake of an eye-opening study by Canadian researchers that found annual visits in U.S. emergency rooms for suicidal thoughts and suicide attempts among children aged five to 18 almost doubled between 2007 and 2015, from
  • Montsion trial: Eyewitness describes confrontation between Abdi and police

    Abdirahman Abdi shielded himself from police with a 30-pound rubber construction weight held over his head, according to an eyewitness who saw the critical moments unfold on July 24, 2016 as police chased Abdi from Wellington Street West through to the fatal interaction with police outside his Hilda Street home.
    Wendy Dunford was jogging with her husband that Sunday morning when their route took them into Abdi’s path as he was chased by Const. Dave Weir to the apartment complex at 55 Hilda
  • Coun. Rawlson King fast-tracking through council school as he begins representing Rideau-Rockcliffe

    Rideau-Rockcliffe Coun. Rawlson King hardly has time to get settled in at city hall.
    Freshly elected to city council, King only has days to learn about municipal governance, where new councillors usually have weeks before a new term begins. He’ll also need to decide on which committees he would like to sit, though ultimately the committee membership is up to council. He’ll also need to hire staff for his office.
    “I feel ecstatic but exhausted,” King said Tuesday during a
  • City of Ottawa should declare a 'climate emergency,' committee says

    The City of Ottawa should recognize the world is in the throes of a “climate emergency” requiring a renewed focus on city hall’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, according to most councillors on the environment committee.
    The committee voted 6-2 on Tuesday to recommend council declare a climate emergency as proposed by Coun. Shawn Menard, who is the vice-chair of the committee. Voting with Menard were committee chair Scott Moffatt and members Keith Egli, Catherine Mc
  • 'There was chaos everywhere Justin went,' inquest told

    Identifying and treating people with a serious mental illness like Justin St. Amour before they become violent might be cheaper in the long run than sending them to hospital or to jail, the medical director of Ottawa’s Inner City Health testified Tuesday at a coroner’s inquest.
    “There was chaos anywhere Justin went,” said Dr. Jeff Turnbull, who quit his job as chief of staff at The Ottawa Hospital to work with the city’s poor and vulnerable on the streets.
  • Ottawa's Bronson Centre gets Toronto investment

    An innovative partnership between a Toronto music venue and Ottawa’s Bronson Centre will bring more live music to the nation’s capital and support social enterprise at the same time.The owners of Toronto’s Phoenix Music Theatre have struck a long-term lease with Ottawa’s Bronson Centre that will allow the centre to maintain its role as a hub for not-for-profit community groups while they improve its capacity for live music. Booking management will be handled by the well-c
  • Going out best bets, April 18 to 25: Cher says goodbye (again), and a luxury dinner for autism

    Cher is at it again. Saying goodbye, that is, with her Here We Go Again tour. If this sounds familiar, it’s because she first said goodbye more than a decade ago. Back then, the show was a rhinestone-studded spectacle of musical fantasy, and we’re sure this one will be just as fabulous, with costume changes, multi-coloured wigs, mechanical gizmos and all the hits. Oh, we’re going to hear a bunch of ABBA songs, too, in support of her 26th album, a collection of ABBA covers e
  • Police seeking third suspect in home invasion

    Ottawa police are asking for the public’s help in identifying a suspect in a Valentine’s Day home invasion in the Uplands area.
    Police have already charged one man and charges are pending against a second after three men forced their way into a Downpatrick Road apartment at around 10:15 p.m. on Feb. 14 and assaulted a woman.
    Another person in the apartment intervened and one of the suspects pointed a gun at both victims, say police.
    On April 8, police charged Ahmed Bille, 27, of Otta
  • How prepared are National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa churches to face disasters

    As French authorities continued to assess the damage to Notre-Dame Cathedral’s artworks in the aftermath of Monday’s horrific fire in Paris, some officials in Ottawa said they were fully prepared to save cultural treasures entrusted to them in the event of emergencies.
    The National Gallery of Canada’s artworks are protected by an up-to-date emergency plan, in a 30-year-old building that follows strict fire codes, a spokeswoman for the gallery said Tuesday.
    Senior media and publ
  • Spicer: Notre-Dame, the heart of Paris, will regain her glory

    For three years two decades ago, I used to cycle to the garden at the back of Cathédrale Notre-Dame de Paris, which is where most of the flames burned this week.
    I was alone on a bench with only a stray cat or two. Often I looked up at the magnificent church, sometimes circling out to the front that most tourists see. Idly, I would dream of past centuries, of the hopes and joys and tragedies of this small patch of Paris, back to Roman times – when it was a sanctuary from the dreaded

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