The Westboro Beach Community Association (WBCA) will monitor the City of Ottawa’s 50- year plan to improve water quality at Westboro Beach and issue an annual report card to the community. Westboro Beach was closed to swimmers 26 days in the summer of 2011.
In October 2011, the city approved a 50-year $43 million plan aimed at cutting the amount of stormwater that pollutes Westboro Beach and the Ottawa River. Unfortunately, only $2 million will be spent this year. The WBCA will track city expenditures and actions and will issue a passing or failing grade in an annual report card. The factors determining the passing or failing grade will be projects implemented, money spent and days the beach is closed to swimming.
The planned retrofit program will help manage stormwater from the Westboro neighbourhood as well as the Pinecrest Creek watershed which drains into the Ottawa River just north of the beach. Westboro was built without the proper infrastructure to control water run-off from the surrounding streets. Infill and redevelopment in the area have also contributed to the problem. The retrofit plan includes stormwater ponds and pilot programs such as water cisterns, rain gardens and porous pavement on city properties. Other measures include narrowing parts of streets, building rock-filled trenches and creating rain gardens to catch run-off. The program also calls for two oil and grit separators and pair of stormwater management ponds.
Any Westboro Beach resident wanting to get involved in monitoring the beach quality and working on the annual report contact should contact Ben Abraham or Mari Wellman or Bonnie Campbell.
Archives of Beach Quality for 2011
Pinecrest Creek/Westboro Stormwater Manager Retrofit Study