Man charged in Orléans explosion

A 35-year-old was arrested in the Orléans explosion, and he may have a lengthy record.

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Good morning!

Well then, that’s done with. The first budget of the new council has passed. It is, as promised by the mayor, a tight one. This is not a council that’s into free-spending. The transit system is taking the biggest hit, mostly by deferring maintenance and other costs down the road. Which, well, those bills become due eventually. Just not this year.

There isn’t a lot to say about the rest, it mostly follows the pattern of previous budgets. And with only a few months on the job, this council hasn’t had much chance to make its own mark. Expect that next year.

Anyhow, enough about that, let’s get to the news.

— Robert Hiltz, managing editor

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Weather Report

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Saturday: -1 🌡️ -6 | ❄️

Sunday: +3 🌡️ -7 | ❄️

Monday: +5 🌡️ -7 | ☀️


Man charged in explosion that levelled homes

What happened: Kody Crosby, a 35-year-old Ottawa man, is facing a dozen charges related to the Orléans explosion last month, the Ottawa Police Service announced. Two people were buried by rubble in the explosion, four homes were destroyed, and dozens were forced from their homes.

The charges:

  • Four counts of criminal negligence causing bodily harm;

  • Four counts of arson, explosion causing bodily harm;

  • One count of arson, explosion disregard for human life;

  • One count of arson, explosion causing property damage;

  • Two counts of break and enter.

Other charges? Four years ago, a man with Crosby’s name and the same age was charged with 19 counts breaking and entering and other charges for a series of break ins at construction sites over a two year period, CTV reported. And in 2014 the same man was arrested and charged for break ins at dozens of homes and businesses. Nine cars were stolen and later recovered. He faces 26 charges from that incident.

Relief: The homes were part of a Minto development, with many families only just moving in. The company’s president, Brent Strachan, said the company was grateful an arrest was made.

  • “We are grateful to the authorities for their steadfast support throughout this investigation and our thoughts continue to be with those who were injured. Our focus remains on the construction of our community so residents can move into their new homes as soon as possible," he said, according to CTV.

Forced out: Immediately after the explosion, 28 households were forced from their homes. Many have since returned, only to find damage inside and outside their new houses. Ten are still waiting to return.


💰 $4.2 million: The price of the most expensive home ever sold in Manotick. [CTV]

❄️ 20 cm: The amount of snow expected to fall this weekend. [CTV]


A Canadian legacy could be in jeopardy

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  • ParticipACTION is focused on getting Canadians moving. But all their work could be at risk.

The problem: The organization needs renewed funding in the upcoming federal budget to tackle the inactivity crisis.

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But only if the federal government steps up to support this work.

Learn more about why this funding for ParticipACTION is so critically important.


Budget approved with unanimous vote, some changes to draft

A breakdown of service expenditures

Handout/City of Ottawa

What happened: City council approved the 2023 budget with a unanimous vote, with an overall tax increase of 2.5 percent. It marks a big win for Mayor Mark Sutcliffe, who gets to fulfil his key campaign promise for a low tax increase, CTV reported.

Status quo: While the tax increase is lower than previous years, the budget largely continues the legacy of previous years’ budgets. The real test will come next year once a line-by-line budget review has been completed for the first time in two decades, CBC reported.

Big takeaways:

  • OC Transpo fares will be frozen for 2023, and free fares are planned for kids under 12 years old;

  • The transit budget will make $47 million in cuts to its capital budget by retiring older buses and deferring spending;

  • The police budget will rise by $15.2 million to a total of $401 million;

  • And it’s not clear whether provincial and federal funding will be on offer to fill budget holes for transit and infrastructure.

Divided votes: While the overall budget was approved without dissent, several of the individual departmental budgets passed with split votes. The police budget passed with a vote of 17-8, and the transit budget passed 21-4.

Tax impact

Handout/City of Ottawa

What’s different: There were several last-minute changes before the final vote, the Ottawa Citizen reported.

  • Several city wading pools will be opened on Canada Day, with the hope of extending the pool season;

  • Each ward will get two more porta potties to place at parks or other public spaces without washrooms;

  • And temporary scaffolding that protects riders at Tunney’s Pasture and Hurdman stations will stay up for at least another two months while the city looks at other more permanent solutions.

You can see more of what’s in the budget from our breakdown when it was first unveiled. And for City Hall Insiders we break out the individual departmental budgets.


🌲 The head of the city’s environment committee wants to know how land next to an upcoming housing development was clear cut without a permit. Drone footage shows hundreds of stacked logs. The developer said the land will be for agricultural use, an exemption from the bylaw. [CBC]

👗 Nordstrom will shut down its operations in Canada, including its two Ottawa stores in the Rideau Centre and at Trainyards. [CTV]

🏘️ A desperately needed housing development in Orléans has been delayed by a council committee that demanded 20 more parking spots to allow it to go ahead. [CBC]

🔥 Seven people were treated for smoke inhalation, four of whom went to the hospital, after a serious fire in Riverside South. [CTV]

🍎 The ByWard Market BIA will be dissolved and in its place a new single entity representing the market itself and the surrounding neighbourhood will be created. [CTV]

👩‍🏭 A new pilot program to attract girls into the skilled trades has started at Sir Guy Carleton Secondary School. [CTV]

🏥 The Ottawa Hospital and a private group of surgeons have entered an agreement to perform surgeries at the Riverside Hospital. It’s raising concerns about privatitzation of the healthcare system. [CBC]

🥅 The Sens traded three draft picks to the Phoenix Coyotes for defenceman Jakob Chychrun. GM Pierre Doriaon told TSN he’d promised Claude Giroux a new defender to bolster the squad. [The Canadian Press]

🚓 Gatineau city council voted against putting a new police station in the parking lot of the Robert-Guertin Centre. [CBC]


Your weekend guide


🎞️ Authentic Photography Exhibit, Sunday, 12 pm: An exhibit of the photography of Valeriia Zaporozhets and Roksolana Duda. At Intempo Design Studio, 357 Waverly St. Tickets $7.


🎹 Sofya Gulyak, the Virtuoso Pianist, Friday 7 pm: The revival of the master piano recital series, Gulyak will play works by Clara and Robert Schumann, Brahms, Rachmaninoff, Scriabin and Stravinsky. At Southminster United Church, 15 Aylmer Ave. Tickets $23.


🤸‍♂️ 2022-2023 Men's 3rd Ontario Cup, Friday to Sunday: Provincial gymnastics competition. At the Ottawa Gymnastics Centre, 294 Elmgrove Ave. Kids under five get in free. Tickets $11.

❄️ BOC Let's Move, Snowshoeing, Sunday 1 pm: Black Ottawa Connect is putting on this family-friendly event with Kanata Nordic for all skill levels of snowshoers — no experience required! Starts at the Kanata Nordic Ski Club, 411 Corkstown Rd. Donations accepted for tickets.


🍁 Sugarbush On The Farm, all weekend: The sugarbush at the Log Farm is open for the season. Wagon rides, maple syrup, a real hands-on experience of maple production, and more. Sap flows best on sunny days at at least +5 C. At The Log Farm, 670 Cedarview Rd. Tickets $13.


📚 Ottawa International Crafts and Book Expo, Friday to Sunday: Dozens of exhibitors with books and more. All at the Horticulture Building at Lansdowne Park. Tickets $12.


🎨 Paint Night, Friday 7 pm: A night of guided painting with everything you need to make art in a small group. At Stacked Smoked Meat and Grill, 2679 Bank St. Tickets $33.

⛑️ Fundraising Event for Turkish Earthquakes, Sunday 2 pm: Hosted by the Canadian and Turkish Women’s Association of Ottawa with support from the Turkish embassy, a fundraiser and silent auction to raise money for the victims of the deadly earthquakes. Tickets $25.


What happened this week in food

Every week our team at Capital Eats scours Ottawa for the best places to eat, drinks to try and events to attend. Here’s a breakdown of all the biggest stories.

🍖 You don’t want to miss the bulgogi beef at this Ottawa South Korean restaurant. The galbi jjim pork ribs are also a solid choice.

🍟 One-hundred percent beef tallow. That’s what this restaurant cooks its fries in. For Insiders our food editor takes you into one of Ottawa’s most impressive poutineries.

🍷 It’s early, but if you’re looking for a great Christmas gift, you won’t go wrong with this Sherry. For Insiders, scroll down for review.

  • The first day of school next year will be Sept. 5 in the new 2023-24 calendars for the public and Catholic boards. [CTV]

  • Monday is Cupcake Day for the SPCA, they encourage you to eat a cupcake and donate to help animals in need. [CityNews]

  • Shopify is trying a new business structure splitting employees into two streams, managers and crafters. [OBJ]

  • There will be a vigil next Tuesday at Patterson Creek Park to mourn the lost season of skating on the Canal. [CTV]

  • The Friends of the Central Experimental Farm are gearing up for their annual volunteer recruitment drive.

  • Here’s the lineup for Ottawa independent movie theatres this weekend. [Apt613]

  • Want to have your announcement featured? Contact our partnership team for more info.


André Martin/Ottawa Lookout Reader

Today’s photo comes from reader André Martin, who sends in this great photo of some highland cows. “They just love this kind of weather,” Martin said.

Do you have a photo you’d like to share with the Lookout community? Send it in!


A foodie’s dream, and it’s free to enter

Our food editor has compiled a fantastic food giveaway of delicious items and local gift cards to some of Ottawa’s best restaurants.

  • Best of all? You have two chances to win.

Entering is easy. All you have to do is refer a friend (or even better, friends!) to Ottawa Lookout or Capital Eats. Every person you refer increases your odds of winning.

  • The contest closes on March 8. You must live in Ottawa to enter.

We’ve even made it easy to share! Just click these links to automatically share with your contacts.

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Congrats to Nancy, Cheryl, Adam, and Kathy. Who knew the OttawaGuesser was along Malvern Drive near the Walter Baker rec centre and John McCrae Secondary School.

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