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Commemorative naming

Commemorative naming policy

Commemorative Naming Policy for Municipal Parks, Streets and Facilities

Department: Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services
Branch: Strategic Support Branch
Authority: City Council
Approval Date: 24 July 2002
Effective Date: Upon Council approval (24 July 2002)
Revision Date: 5 December 2018

Policy Statement

The City of Ottawa is committed to providing a fair, consistent and efficient process, while respecting the important need for public consultation and legislative approvals, with respect to commemorative naming of municipal streets, parks, and parts of parks, facilities, and parts of facilities after a person, persons, or family name.

Definitions

For the purpose of this policy, the following definitions apply.

Commemorative - shall refer to the official naming of a municipal street, park, part of a park, facility, or part of a facility, to commemorate a person, persons, or family.

Purpose

The main objectives of this policy are:

  • To ensure a clear, efficient and timely naming process;
  • To ensure the application of key criteria to determine the validity of a commemorative name;
  • To ensure the application of a concrete consultation process and community participation;
  • To ensure one central repository for all commemorative naming requests for streets, parks, parts of parks, facilities, or parts of facilities.
  • To ensure the proper approval process and the importance of the role played by legislative bodies (i.e. Committee and Council approval and Ottawa Public Library (OPL) Board approval when necessary); and
  • To serve as a working group that develops recommendations on commemorative names for Council’s consideration.

Application

This policy applies to all City employees, including full-time, part-time, and temporary employees, summer students and co-op placements, and persons acting on behalf of the City (e.g. consultants, contractors), as well as Members of Council and the public with respect to the commemorative naming of municipal streets, parks, parts of parks, facilities and parts of facilities after a person, persons, or family name.

Any member of the public or City Council may submit a nomination for the commemorative naming of a municipal park, facility or street. For commemoration purposes, the term municipal park shall include other components, such as sporting fields contained within a larger park. The term municipal facility shall include other components, such as ice rinks or meeting rooms contained within a City facility, subject to any existing sponsorship naming rights with the subject facility. 

Policy Requirements

The policy is, above all, principles-based with an emphasis on public consultation, a dignified process for nominees, and respect for Council’s decision making authority. 

Criteria

Where the naming of a street, municipal park, parts of a park, facility, or parts of a facility is being requested, at least one of the following criteria shall apply:

  • The nominated individual shall have demonstrated excellence, courage or exceptional service to the citizens of the City of Ottawa, the Province of Ontario and/or Canada;
  • The nominated individual shall have an extraordinary community service record;
  • The nominated individual shall have worked to foster equality and reduce discrimination;
  • Where the nominated individual is a current City employee, the individual shall have made an outstanding contribution to the City of Ottawa outside of their capacity and duties as a City employee or they may be recognized for their exceptional service once they are no longer a City employee;
  • An individual may be recognized for a significant financial contribution to a park or facility, where that contribution significantly benefits the community that the park or facility serves;
  • The nominated name has historical significance to the community, City of Ottawa, Province of Ontario, or Canada.

Single Use

A commemorative name should only be used once. No Memorials

The Policy is not open to commemorate an individual’s death.  These applications will be directed to the Commemorative Bench Program, the Commemorative Tree Program, Roadside Memorial Sign Program, or other appropriate memorial program.

Commemorative Naming Application Form

The commemorative naming information sheet, application form, and required affidavits are available in French and English through the contact noted at the end of this policy document.

Processes

The commemorative naming process for municipal streets, parks, parts of parks, facilities, and parts of facilities may involve a different course of action depending on the circumstances surrounding the request/requirement for naming.

A. Process for Parks and Facilities

  • Receipt of a Nomination/Application: All requests for commemorative naming are to be submitted in writing by completing the Commemorative Naming Application Form and supporting documentation.
  • Processing of the Nomination/Application: Processing the application involves confirmation of criteria, reference checks (if applicable), discussion with the applicant and applicable City departments, initial meeting of the Commemorative Naming Committee (“CNC”), public consultation for a 30-day period, compiling consultation results, and a reconvening meeting of the CNC for a review of the public consultation results, if required.
  • Report to Council: When a name is recommended for approval, a report to the appropriate Standing Committee and Council is prepared containing the CNC’s recommendation with the exception of the naming of OPL buildings and spaces within (including mobile units), which will be approved by the OPL Board.
  • Implementation of Approved Nomination: Upon Committee and Council approval, implementation of the approved commemorative name is undertaken. This involves final notification to the nominator and nominee and an official unveiling ceremony for the nominee and family with the presentation of a plaque to be erected at the site, indicating the name as well as its significance for commemoration (the OPL assumes responsibility for any associated library naming event).
  • In cases where there is no opposition received during the public consultation period, a report can be submitted directly to the appropriate Standing Committee and Council, without the reconvening of the CNC for a second meeting. Opposition is defined as a clear expression that the candidate in question does not meet the criteria for commemoration as outlined in this policy, and does not include general comments in opposition to the principles of the policy.

B. Process for Commemorative Street Naming

Commemorative street names shall remain the responsibility of the Building Code Services Branch. Where a request for a commemorative street name has been made, initial contact with Building Code Services Branch is made. The name will be vetted through the investigation and criteria evaluation process of this policy. Once endorsed, it will be forwarded to the Building Code Services Branch for processing in accordance with the Municipal Addressing By-law. A meeting of the CNC is not required for the naming of a street.

Public Consultation

Notice and public consultation shall be undertaken in accordance with the size and scope of the park or facility being named, and in consultation with affected Members of Council. The public consultation period shall last 30 calendar days.

Written submissions and/or petitions received during the public consultation phase must be verifiable. To that end:

  • Each written submission must include the submitter’s full first and last name; and
  • Any petition must adhere to the guidelines outlined in Council’s Petition Policy with respect to petition requirements.

Upon request, City staff will provide the final decision on a proposal to individuals who submit a comment under the public consultation component, and provide a copy of the Commemorative Naming policy and redacted application form.

Commemorative Naming Committee (“CNC”)

The CNC, a staff-Council committee, is composed of the following representatives:

  • City Clerk (or designate)
  • General Manager, Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services Department (or designate)
  • General Manager, Public Works and Environmental Services Department (or designate)
  • General Manager, Planning, Infrastructure and Economic Development Department (or designate)
  • Mayor (or designate)
  • Ward Councillor (or designate)
  • Ottawa Public Library CEO (or designate) if required
  • Ottawa Public Library Board Chair (or designate) if required

In the event that a park or facility crosses ward boundaries and is located in more than one ward, all affected ward Councillors shall be considered part of the CNC. Furthermore, in instances where the proposal is of a “City-wide” nature or significance, the General Manager, Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services may recommend that a chair (or designate) of a standing committee or board be invited to participate on the CNC.

The Council and Committee Services Unit within the Office of the City Clerk shall oversee the coordination of the CNC and associated reports to the appropriate Standing Committee and Council.

Multiple Names

In instances where multiple names have been submitted for a single street, park or facility, the CNC may select one or more proposal(s) to move forward.

The CNC supports public consultation in a manner that is dignified for nominees.  As such, the CNC may expand or narrow the number of proposals for a particular street, park or facility, as it deems appropriate. 

Renaming

The renaming process shall be identical to the commemorative naming process and also require City Council as the final authority for approving the proposed park or facility name. However, the renaming of an existing commemoration shall be subject to a 60-day public consultation period.

Other

A Member of Council may request that the CNC address other commemorations such as the naming of other public features or public spaces.  Although not applicable under this policy, a Member of Council may also request that the CNC conduct public consultation on a name that is not that of a person, persons, or family.  

Exceptions

In keeping with its powers set out in the Municipal Act, 2001, Council may assign a commemorative name by resolution, notwithstanding the provisions included in the Commemorative Naming Policy.

The Ottawa Police Services Board has delegated authority for the naming of municipal police buildings in whole or in part.

Public List of Approved Commemorations 

All approved commemorations are listed publicly on Ottawa.ca.

Responsibilities

Employees

It is the responsibility of employees, including management, to:

  • Understand and support this policy, and ensure that the policy is communicated to employees and the public.
  • Work cooperatively with the General Manager of Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services, or designate, with respect to the provision of information and necessary approvals regarding municipal parks, streets and facilities.
  • Direct relevant inquiries to the General Manager of Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services or the contact noted at the end of this policy document.

It is also the responsibility of departmental staff to notify the General Manager of Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services when a new park or facility is to be constructed. Furthermore, the appropriate staff will provide information regarding the specific park or facility and the applicable time frame for construction and City ownership, and, if applicable, information with respect to proposed names for the park or facility.

Contact

Enquiries regarding commemorative naming should be directed to:

Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services Department
City of Ottawa
namingottawa@ottawa.ca

Available commemorative street names

Available commemorative street names for new developments...

Learn More

Commemorative names previously approved and in-use

Approved and in-use commemorative facilities, parks and streets...

Learn More

Current commemorative naming proposals

Current Commemorative Naming Proposals

The City is conducting public consultation on proposals to change:

  • Bradley Commons Park, located at 331 Cranesbill Road, to Bradley-Craig Park
  • Atlas Park, located at 875 Atlas Terrace, to Bob Mills Park
  • The new Stittsville Main Street sitting area, located across from Village Square Park at 6000 Abbott Street East, to Bradley Square
  • Uplands Park, located at 3165 Uplands Drive, to Shirley Seward Park
  • The anticipated Orléans Health Hub park to Dr. Émile Major Park
  • The unnamed parkland located at 100 Highgarden Terrace to Bert Dowler Park
  • Rideauview Community Centre Park, located at 4310 Shoreline Drive, to Joan O’Malley Park
  • Shetland Park, located at 24 Shetland Way, to Laura Dubois Park

Bradley-Craig Park (Ward 6 – Stittsville)

In recognition of the historical significance of the Bradley-Craig family, the City has been asked to name the Bradley Commons Park, located at 331 Cranesbill Road, Bradley-Craig Park. The family operated the farm in Stittsville for more than 180 years and their farmstead was an agricultural model for dairy farmers throughout the region. The farmland was fertile, well-watered and largely stone-free. Animals were important to farming with the family taking great pride in their fine horses and in their arduous training of these animals. The heritage designated, large, red barn and brick farmhouse, known as the Bradley-Craig farm, still stands and can be seen off Hazeldean Road.

Bob Mills Park (Ward 6 – Stittsville)

In recognition of extensive community service, the City has been asked to name Atlas Park, located at 875 Atlas Terrace, Bob Mills Park. Bob Mills worked for 25 years as the Director of Parks and Recreation for Goulbourn Township. He developed numerous parks, ball fields and hockey arenas during this time, enhancing recreation in the Stittsville community.

Bradley Square (Ward 6 – Stittsville)

In recognition of extensive community service, the City has been asked to name the new Stittsville Main Street sitting area, located across from Village Square Park at 6000 Abbott Street East, Bradley Square. Ross Bradley and the Bradley Family have been long-time residents and business leaders in the Stittsville community. Ross is a philanthropist that has donated time and money to many local organizations, charities, community groups and minor sports teams.

Shirley Seward Park (Ward 16 – River)

In recognition of extensive community service to the residents of Ottawa, the City has been asked to rename Uplands Park, located at 3165 Uplands Drive, Shirley Seward Park. Longtime Ottawa resident Shirley Seward has made outstanding contributions to the community and the education system. Shirley served eight years as the River Zone 11 Trustee with the Ottawa-Carleton District School Board. In that role, she was dedicated to ensuring equity in the education system, closing the gap between students with and without learning challenges, breaking down barriers for children living in poverty, providing more resources and supports for Indigenous students, focusing on students with special needs and bolstering student programming to enrich schools and build a stronger sense of community in local neighbourhoods.

Dr. Émile Major Park (Ward 19 – Cumberland)

In recognition of extensive community service to the residents of Ottawa, the City has been asked to name the anticipated Orléans Health Hub park as Dr. Émile Major Park. Émile opened his general practice in Orléans in 1925. He practiced medicine at the Ottawa General Hospital, Saint-Vincent Hospital and Montfort Hospital. During his career, he carried out more than 1,000 deliveries. Highly dedicated, he made house calls day or night to treat the sick. Patients unable to pay would have their debt cancelled. In 1963, the Orléans Chamber of Commerce named him Citizen of the Year.

Bert Dowler Park (Ward 20 – Osgoode)

In recognition of the historical significance, the City has been asked to name the unnamed parkland located at 100 Highgarden Terrace as Bert Dowler Park. Bert was a successful farmer who started off by delivering milk, selling approximately 280 litres a day. He owned his first 55-acre farm on Bank Street, where he raised horses and cattle for sale. Bert played a pivotal role in the farming community in Ottawa South and was a senior member of the Billings farming committee. He was the go-to person to help the farming community and a mentor for new farmers.

Joan O’Malley Park (Ward 22 – Gloucester-South Nepean)

In recognition of the historical significance to Canada, the City has been asked to name the Rideauview Community Centre Park, located at 4310 Shoreline Drive, Joan O’Malley Park. Joan is known as the woman who sewed Canada’s first maple leaf flag. In 1964, Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson’s government formed a Senate and House of Commons Committee to find a distinctive national flag. From about 5,900 submissions, the committee selected three designs for final consideration. On a Friday afternoon in the late autumn of 1964, the Prime Minister made an urgent request for prototypes of the three proposals to try out the following morning. Since no tailor could be found, 20-year-old Joan stitched the flags together, completing them shortly after midnight. She was initially told to keep her role secret and did not speak of her experience for 10 years, but her work was instrumental in developing the Canadian flag we know today.

Laura Dubois Park (Ward 23 – Kanata South)

In recognition of extensive community service, the City has been asked to rename Shetland Park, located at 24 Shetland Way, Laura Dubois Park. Laura is a community leader and has played a prominent role in the Kanata South community since 2007. She was selected to operate her own grocery store franchise: Laura’s Your Independent Grocer. She offers a special grocery program for seniors, helps to feed local school children through a school breakfast program and, in 2009, stepped up to help the Glen Cairn community recover after flash flooding. During the flooding, Laura would drive around affected neighbourhoods handing out food prepared at her store. For days, she would have meals prepared, delivering to those in need and hoping to be a friendly face of goodwill to her neighbours. Laura was recognized for her hard work and dedication with a City Builder Award in 2014.

Comments

If you would like to submit written comments regarding one or more of the proposals or obtain further information, please contact namingottawa@ottawa.ca. Comments must be made in writing and received no later than Friday, August 27.

Commemorative benches

example of Commemorative park bench
 

Bench location

  • In consultation with the donor, the specific location in the park is determined by City staff from Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services and Parks Design and Construction
  • The bench must be located on an accessible pathway as per the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act.
  • Certain locations are not eligible for commemorative bench installations including; City Hall, Marion Dewar Plaza, Dick Bell Park, Andrew Haydon Park, Playfair Park.
  • NCC or other federally owned parks are not eligible for City of Ottawa bench commemorations

Bench plaque

  • Wording for plaque must be submitted to Recreation, Cultural and Facility Services for review, approval;
  • All commemorative park bench plaques must be translated by the City’s French Language Services as per the Bilingualism Policy.

Bench supply and installation

  • The cost estimate varies from $4,500 to $5,000 (harmonized sales tax included) depending on site conditions and the size of the commemorative plaque.
  • Bench is purchased and installed by City (contractor)
  • Supply and installation costs are recovered from the donor
  • Installation is usually 10 weeks from date of order but the City cannot guarantee this timeline
  • A new bench must be donated; a plaque cannot be added to an existing bench nor can an older bench be removed and replaced

Tax Receipt

City of Ottawa official tax receipts are available for individual donations

Deposit

A $500 deposit is required.

Contact

Please submit requests for commemorative benches in writing to CB_BC@ottawa.ca

East
Warren Bedford
Parks and Facilities Planning
Recreation, Culture and Facility Services
613-580-2424 ext. 25144

West
Coran Graham
Parks and Facilities Planning
Recreation, Culture and Facility Services
613-580-2424 ext. 16683

For information on other commemoration programs available in the City of Ottawa please select one of the programs below: