Sweet smell of … dust

Earlier this week I was delighted to discover the MUP through Centrepointe neighborhood was already swept by the City. It makes for a much more pleasant walk with the grit and salt brushed aside.

Over the course of this week I discovered swept sidewalks on Albert Street near Bayview; on Greenbank Road south of Baseline; on Carling Avenue near Lincoln Fields transit station, as well as the aforementioned Centrepointe path.

I think this is a truly delightful aspect of Spring in Ottawa: a faint haze of road dust throughout the city as the streets finally dry after months of snow and slush. The sound of street cleaning machines heard faintly through still-closed windows in the middle of the night (imagine — someone from the City working … and at night too!). The joy of wearing shoes again outdoors, on clean sidewalks. On my street, residents have already been out sweeping the city sidewalk themselves, resulting in clear sections that sometimes extend for hundreds of feet.

Ahh, the taste of spring.

3 thoughts on “Sweet smell of … dust

  1. Good Idea about sweeping your own side walk. I might have to get out the push broom this weekend.

  2. I quite like the smell of the dust in the spring. I hope they clean the canal pathways soon though, they are very gritty. I picked up a sock full of grit on my run last night. Still, that is a small gripe now that spring is finally here.

  3. You LIKE the dust?? Try walking on any city street. There’s a layer (even after street “sweeping”) that is fine powder, blown everywhere when vehicles pass, and vehicles pass constantly and keep this junk airborne all the time.
    Ottawa now gets constant desert-like springs due to overuse of land. The acreage of grass and urban forest—nature’s mechanism to clean air–has been decimated. I have lived in this stinkhole for 55 years–having walked constantly and everywhere in the entire city—and air quality has never been worse. Environment Canada with its useless air quality machinery always happily states the air is better than it really is: in reality we need to monitor walking routes at ground level, not some field in the experimental farm.
    Ottawa used to get much more rain at any time of year that washed streets and cleaned the air. Melting snow aerates the atmosphere and does the same thing. Rain takes out airborne particulate matter—the very small stuff—PM2.5– that gets DEEP into your lungs and STAYS there. Sweet smell of dust??– until you reach middle age when you get more pneumonia and respiratory ailments.
    Kids and the elderly are the worst candidates for this. The current conditions in the past few years in spring are now making it dangerous to try to keep fit by walking everywhere, and WILL pose serious health problems later in life.
    The political entities here seem to think this is not much of an issue but more of an inconvenience. None of them walk an hour or more to work and remain inside most of their career. When it gets difficult to breath and one needs a damned surgical mask just to go out, then we have MUCH of a problem.
    People need to wake up and tell our councilors to do what’s needed, not just let them fill in their day with more amendments to condo builders’ whims, cutting trees and paying exorbitant amounts for useless signs and statues. It is their responsibility as it is legislators to make sure that air quality is a serious HEALTH issue…

Comments are closed.