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Weekly News Review: Mercier out, Manconi in at OC Transpo, city heritage, Craig Anderson & more!

By François Levesque on February 27, 2012

There’s a change of guard at OC Transpo as Alain Mercier’s reign as GM came to an abrupt end this week. It may not have come as a total surprise as negative  perceptions about the transit service have been accumulating ever since the 2010 winter strike. Taking over from Mercier is Public Works’ General Manager John Manconi, a man well respected in the city bureaucracy. Hear what Manconi had to say his first day on the job.

On a related note, no one ever said OC Transpo drivers had an easy job. Proof? Bus drivers filed an average of about one “VATE” (Violence Against Transit Employee) incident report a week, in which they allege being spit on, hit, threatened and taunted, reports the Citizen.

This is perhaps more of a Spring/Summer kind of story but GoogleMaps now has cycling route layers for Ottawa.

In the Citizen, Joanne Chianello mourns the demolishing of the Groundwood Pulp Mill, a building the NCC deemed of heritage interest in the early 1990s. While confusion and indecision reign, our built heritage may be disappearing, says Chianello, in another critique of the National Commission and the city of Ottawa’s lack of coordinated action. The city’s 2020 Heritage Plan states that “The City will foster the development of the local heritage sector through the creation of policy and legislation, the provision of advice, funding and facilities, the protection of resources, demonstration of best practices, and program delivery.” However, I’d really like to know what is the city and the NCC’s responsibility in terms of heritage or potential heritage buildings.

Speaking of heritage Ottawa, friend of the Apt613, Alex Laquerre, has been running a photo series at Spacing Ottawa, comparing today’s Ottawa to the Ottawa of yore, photographically.

Do you think Ottawa goalie Craig Anderson’s freak kitchen injury put a damper on the Sens playoff hopes? Bryan Murray think the Sens still have what it takes to make the playoffs but got back up Ben Bishop from the St. Louis Blues just in case.