Autumn colours

The Preston BIA arranges with an exterior decorator to supply storefront, lobby, and window decor on a seasonal basis. This allows businesses that wouldn’t normally fuss about window decor to have professionally done seasonal displays. It also spruces up the whole street. The abundant and lush display above evokes the right mix of fall colours with an Italian element.

As the leaves drop from real trees, those remaining dead tree trunks maintained by Ottawa Hydro (or Bell, or cablevision) reassert their dominance of the urban streetscape. I can’t help but regret the City’s policies of obliging suburban businesses to install underground wiring while installing above-grade wiring in urban areas. Those poles have a modest benefit for posters and keeping vehicles off sidewalks, but who thinks they are aesthetic? The cost of underground wiring in the ‘burbs is amortized over the mortgage period of buildings and could easily be amortized over a few decades of urban bills so that current tenants don’t face a huge installation hit. But for some reason, suburban areas get underground wiring but urban areas do not.

5 thoughts on “Autumn colours

  1. I did not know that, re: suburban vs. urban hydro pole policy. Since this may be my number one pet peeve with respect to Ottawa’s street environment, I wish you hadn’t told me. Like a bellows blowing onto smoldering coals, my anger has been inflamed once more and it will take some effort to get back to more productive endeavors.

  2. If they are digging up a street anyway, the services should be buried….
    This really bugs me.

  3. I believe Ottawa Hydro was going too charge CAD 1 million for Wellington West, so the city apparently (this is all hearsay I have to admit) had not much appetite for it. The retail was all for it. Too bad, it just makes a streetscape so much more visually pleasing and less distracting. I guess no one wanted to mention ‘fee increase’…..

  4. The actual dollar amount is just a ruse. After all, it costs big bucks to bury the wiring out in barrhaven too, but the businesses and residents there don’t get a choice: it will be put underground. When streets are being rebuilt, the wiring should be buried and the cost amortized over, say, 20 years on the served properties.

Comments are closed.