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Weekly News Review: Party recovery (summer has arrived!), Bixi bikes in Ottawa and Gatineau, biofuel from wheat straw in Ottawa!, new public library on the way, Heatley wants out

By François Levesque on June 15, 2009

All the news that's fit to print.

All the news that’s fit to print.

My apologies for the tardiness of this week’s WNR, I am still recovering from the Apartment613 launch party. Thanks to all that came! If you missed it, our friend Jesse has posted some awesome photos of the night, so you can live vicariously through Flickr. We can safely say that Summer has arrived in Ottawa. This past weekend was by far the busiest cultural weekend of the season so far. With Westfest, le Festival Franco-Ontarien, Gaga Weekend, Magnetic North and countless other events throughout the city, no one should dare to say that Ottawa in a dull place to live.

Making news in the city this week…

The National Capital Commission has launched a pilot bike-share project, making available 50 Bixi bicycles for bike-share in four different spots in Ottawa and Gatineau. There are bike-share stations at Laurier and Victoria streets in Gatineau, Promenade du Portage and Laval Street in Gatineau, Sussex Drive and York Street and Elgin Street and Lawrence Freiman Lane, near the National Arts Centre, where users can pick up and return their rides. You can get a monthly or annual subscription or pay per minute/hour/day.  If anyone has tried the service, please let us know how it’s working.

In other environmental news, Ottawa is home to the first gas station in the world to sell biofuel from wheat straw. Since last week, the Merivale Road Shell station is selling gas blended with 10 per cent cellulosic ethanol, produced locally at Iogen Energy Corp.’s demonstration plant. Cellulosic ethanol is far cleaner that regular fuel and according to logen Corp CEO Brian Foody, “There is enough cellulosic, or enough potential to make cellulosic ethanol, to replace 30 per cent of all our petroleum consumption.”

The Ottawa Public Library will be getting a new home for its main branch. The library’s board said it plans to build a new $180-million library building in the city block bordered by Albert, Lyon, Bay and Slater streets. It will be a welcome improvement over the too small and overused location at Metcalfe and Laurier. No details on what the current location will become although the library board hopes to sell the building in order to finance the construction of the new library.

Attention Sens fans – Heatley wants out. Do you care? You might think he’s a bastard; I’d still love to see him in a Habs uniform next season. I doubt that will ever happen though…

Trial fans, O’Brien’s trial is on hold until June 26. This is when Justice Douglas Cunningham will decide whether to throw out the mayor’s criminal charges. We’ll post more on the trial as it happens.