July 24, 2009 — An historic building and another look at cycling

Posted in Uncategorized by nicktaylorvaisey on July 24, 2009

Featured guests:

Today, we spoke to Michel about a house down the street that, when it was sold to its current occupant a few years ago, apparently represented one of the most expensive home sales in the city’s history. The Algerian mission to Canada purchased the building for $2.9 million. And that’s just one piece of the building’s colourful history.

I also played a portion of an interview I conducted with Ottawa-area environmentalist David Chernushenko. When I spoke to him last year for, we covered a range of transit-related sustainability issues. The 12.5-minute excerpt above addresses some of the challenges both bus users and cyclists face in Ottawa.

Finally, we spoke with Alayne McGregor, a representative of Citizens for Safe Cycling who knows all about the problems cyclists face when it comes to navigating Ottawa’s streets. In light of recent events, our discussion about cycling safety downtown is particularly timely.

Music today included local acts The Rough Sea and That’s the Spirit, both of whom are playing the Black Sheep Inn on Aug. 1 along with other local band Winchester Warm. We also played a track by Harvey Cartel, who are also from Ottawa and will play Cafe Dekcuf on Aug. 8.

Once again, thanks to everyone who contributed to the show.


July 17, 2009 — Navigating Ottawa’s advisory committees

Posted in Uncategorized by nicktaylorvaisey on July 17, 2009

Featured guests:

Today, we discussed issues surrounding the advisory committees that, just as it sounds, advise various council committees on a number of different matters. There are 15 committees in all — listed here — and today we spoke about:

  • the Arts, Heritage and Culture Advisory Committee with John Reid,
  • the Pedestrian and Transit Advisory Committee with Seamus Wolfe, and
  • the potential for a Youth Advisory Committee with Amy Kishek

John has been involved with his committee for a number of years, rising from member to vice-chair and eventually chair. Seamus made a presentation on behalf of his student constituents to the Pedestrian and Transit folks last night. And Amy was involved in the birth of a Mayor’s Youth Advisory Committee in her hometown of Windsor, though she moved away before she had a chance to sit as a member.

I hope you enjoy the interviews. As usual, thanks to everyone who contributed this week.

July 10, 2009 – How to make a difference at City Hall

Posted in Uncategorized by nicktaylorvaisey on July 14, 2009

Featured guests:

As you can tell, we stepped away from the ‘how to make a difference’ discussion at both ends of the show. In the beginning, we spoke with Frank Appleyard about the University of Ottawa’s efforts to send its students on community-service missions around the world. Sabrina Bowman and Shawn Menard both shed some light on what regular citizens can do to get the attention of the power brokers in municipal halls of power.

And then Carl Meyer and Ted Horton came on the show. Carl and I yammered on about federal politics for a few minutes, as we are wont to do. And then Ted joined and we talked about the usefulness of Twitter and other social media at the community level. How can it help people on a day-to-day basis? Listen in.

Oh man, and I almost forgot the most important part. The show lasted for two hours this week. We played a bunch of Sedatives, a local band that just played Bluesfest. And then we threw in some K’naan for good measure.

As usual, thanks to everyone who contributed to the show.


Posted in Uncategorized by nicktaylorvaisey on July 7, 2009

Something has come up. There is controversy brewing. The players in this virtual theatre: Ryan Hill of Apartment613 and Jonathan Rausseo of the University of Ottawa. It’s dramatic. More after the jump. (more…)

July 3, 2009 — Opinion leaders have their say

Posted in Uncategorized by nicktaylorvaisey on July 7, 2009

Featured interviews:

This week, Around the Block went populist. A few days prior to the show, I sent an email around to a group of people that I think comprises what other smart people have called ‘opinion leaders’.

The list included local bloggers, business owners, residents, writers and editors, community association types, local media folks, and a few other people who I know to be insightful.

What did I ask these people? Well, I appealed to their sense of community and asked them what – at the hyperlocal level – was of concern to them. Were there enough buses routed through their neighbourhoods? Were kids – read: students – being too loud?

The interviews above comprise the fruit of that endeavour. We spoke about a number of issues during a packed hour and, in the process, welcomed Jonathan Rausseo as the show’s first three-time guest.

As we said on-air, one more and he gets a free donut.