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Speaker Night March 8 with Thomas d’Aquino

Speaker Night, March 8, with Thomas d’Aquino.

Wednesday, March 8, 8 pm at the Rockcliffe Park Community Hall, 380 Springfield Rd.

Based on his newly published memoir – Private Power ~ Public Purpose: Adventures in Business, Politics, and the Arts – long-time Rockcliffe Park resident Tom d’Aquino will offer personal insights on four decades of private sector leadership at the apex of power with the Business Council of Canada.  He has been hailed as a transforming voice in redefining the role of business and the shaping of responsible capitalism, and as a champion of Canada’s place on the world stage. Beyond business and public policy, he tells tales about his lifelong love affair with arts and culture.

Speaker Night with Andrew Leslie “Russia’s War in the Ukraine – What Next”

Speaker Night, February 1st with Andrew Leslie.

Russia’s War in the Ukraine: What Next?
Wednesday, February 1, 8 p.m.
Based on his personal experience, his expertise, and contacts within the Ukraine military, former general and member of Parliament, Andrew Leslie, will tell us what he believes lies ahead for war-torn Ukraine. While a soldier, Leslie led the 57,000 people in the Canadian Army in fires, floods, earthquakes, security missions, peacekeeping and war in Cyprus, Germany, Croatia, Serbia, Afghanistan and elsewhere. He has received many national and international honours and decorations. .

RPRA Tree Lighting and Carol Sing

RPRA Tree Lighting and Carol Sing

On Wednesday December 14, 6 pm. Please join us behind the Community Hall as the tree lights are lit and the Elmwood Junior School Choir performs, followed by a carol sing, accompanied by the Salvation Army Ottawa Citadel Brass Band. In the spirit of the season, hot chocolate will be served. Join your neighbours after a long hiatus to celebrate at this magical event.


Children’s Holiday Party 2022

Children’s Holiday Party

On Sunday, December 11, 2 – 4 pm, Santa and his elves invite all children to come to the Community Hall, 380 Springfield Rd, for horse-drawn sleigh rides, outdoor activities, holiday traditions from around the world, crafts, holiday treats and lots of fun. Free admission. No registration required. Tax-deductible cheques or donations to Rideau Rockcliffe Community Resource Centre for its food bank are welcomed.

Return of our Speakers Program

RPRA Speakers Program

Andrew Cohen:  Democracy in America

Wednesday, December 7, 8 p.m. 

Andrew Cohen — best-selling author, journalist, professor, and long-term observer of the United States — discusses the state of democracy in “the great republic.”  Reflecting on the congressional elections of 2022 and turning to the presidential election of 2024, he sees an ominous erosion of rights, an ebbing confidence in institutions, and a polarization of opinion descending into civil disorder. Is this how autocracy comes to America?

The RPRA is very pleased to return to engrossing evenings with distinguished speakers in the Community Hall in December!  We expect a good turnout.  Out of respect for all, we strongly urge that everyone wear a mask. 

Confirmation of Designation of Mile Circle and Aviation Museum Area as Lands to be Preserved from Development

Mile Circle and Aviation Museum Area Lands to be Preserved from Development

The following response was received to a request seeking confirmation that Mile Circle and lands to the east of Birch St and lands around the Aviation Museum and the Rockcliffe Park Airport whose designations have been changed to allow for development will be preserved as green space.

Dear Ms. McAllister,

Thank you for taking the time to reach out to the NCC regarding the lands in the Mile Circle and Aviation Museum Area identified in the City of Ottawa’s new Official Plan. Mr. Nussbaum asked me to follow-up with you and provide you with additional information.

Under the National Capital Act, the planning authority for these federal lands is the National Capital Commission. The Capital Urban Lands Plan (2015) designates the lands in the subject area as Capital Urban Greenspace, Cultural Institution & Facility, and Other Federal Facility, which is in keeping with their capital functions.

One of the principal comments that the NCC has made in regards to the City of Ottawa’s New Official Plan is that the NCC’s planning authority, land use designations and policies must be respected where the NCC and City of Ottawa’s plans show overlap. We are continuing to work with the City to achieve this objective, and look forward to reviewing the next draft of the New Official Plan when it is released in the coming weeks.

As part of our review, the NCC noted that some lands along the Sir George-Étienne Cartier Parkway – including Mile Circle – had been changed from Major Open Space to Neighbourhoods. We provided written comments to the City, and raised the issue in discussion with City staff. We have received confirmation that this was an inaccuracy and that the appropriate lands will appear as Greenspace in the next iteration of the New Official Plan.

Last, the City is not proposing any changes to the underlying zoning of the lands at this time, and the NCC always remains the land use planning authority for these federal lands.

If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me.

Kind regards,


Émilie Ruel
Manager, Public consultations

Gestionnaire, Consultations publiques

National Capital Commission
Commission de la capitale nationale

Mark Carney

Speakers Program: Mark Carney “Value(s): Building a Better World for All”

Speakers Program: Mark Carney “Value(s): Building a Better World for All”

Wednesday, April 28, 8 pm: RPRA Speaker Night VIA ZOOM

We had decided to suspend our Speakers Program until we could get together again for our enjoyable evenings at the Community Hall. This is an exception given the high interest in Mark Carney’s new book and the fact that we do not know how long it will be until we can resume our usual evenings together.

Mark Carney

Our neighbour and former Governor of the Bank of England and the Bank of Canada, Mark Carney, will speak to us on his new book which asks the question “What do we value and why is it that often the things we value the most seem of little importance to economic markets?’  By one of the great economic thinkers of our time, his book is described as a fantastic read for anyone interested in the most pressing issues facing the world.  Join us on ZOOM to hear what he has to say and to engage in questions.

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 952 1386 7619

Passcode: 084486

Skating at Jubilee Garden

Skating at Jubilee Garden Winter 2021

Our community offers many opportunities for enjoying winter sports – skating, cross-country skiing, tobogganing and walking through the Rockeries and other NCC lands adjacent to Rockcliffe Park. Skating is at our Jubilee Garden skating rink, MacKay Lake and the (mostly) hockey rink beside the Rockcliffe Park Fieldhouse, located at Rockcliffe Park Public School. Thanks to the Hosers for maintaining the Jubilee Garden rink and the school rink. See here for more information about hours at Jubilee Garden and the school rink.

RPRA’s Rockcliffe Park Tennis Club Update June 2020

RPRA’s Update re Rockcliffe Lawn Tennis Club Lighting

June 22, 2020




The Rockcliffe Park Residents Association received dozens of letters, emails and calls in April, May and June 2020 from neighbours arguing strongly for and against the Rockcliffe Lawn Tennis Club (RLTC) plan to install lighting. This debate has caused controversy in our community.


On that basis, the RPRA would like to take the opportunity to update the community on the current situation, provide facts, outline actions and clarify the RPRA’s role.


Objecting opinions to tennis club lighting can be broadly summarised as follows:


  • Concern that tennis club court lighting would add significant light pollution, and accompanying increased noise traffic into the night which would detrimentally impact the quality of life, and property value of all surrounding residential neighbours.
  • Concern that introducing bright lighting would be incompatible with the unique and protected nighttime character of the village. Tennis court lighting would not to be compatible with the Rockcliffe Park Heritage Plan.
  • Concern over the impact of bright lighting on sensitive wildlife and nature in the area.


In contrast, the RLTC and supporters of tennis club lighting argue that:

  • Tennis court lighting would not have a significant negative impact on surrounding neighbours, and the overall nighttime character of the village.
  • Tennis court lighting would help the club compete for members with other tennis clubs.
  • Tennis court lighting would provide a benefit to the community, by promoting active living and allowing for shared enjoyment and interaction into the evening.
  • The Heritage Plan lists the tennis club as a “Heritage Attribute” to the Heritage Conservation District, and does not specifically restrict tennis court lighting.


Community members have offered their views, and turned to the RPRA for information and guidance.


The RPRA’s role is “to foster a spirit of community within the Village, to preserve and enhance its unique natural environment and its special heritage character, and to represent the interests of Rockcliffe residents.” The guiding principle of the RPRA is its commitment to the three, linked core values: Heritage, Community and Environment. The RPRA’s articles provide that the purpose of the RPRA is “to provide any service or carry out any activity whatsoever tending to the benefit of the residents of the Heritage Conservation District of Rockcliffe Park, in the City of Ottawa, Ontario.


The volunteers of the RPRA board and RPRA committees have spent an extraordinary amount of time and effort over the last several months listening to all voices in the community.


This document provides a factual overview of the background, and current situation.




  • Consultation with the RPRA Heritage Committee and community prior to submitting a Heritage Permit application to the City of Ottawa is strongly encouraged, but there is no legal obligation for Heritage Permit applicants to do so. The RLTC did not enter into a consultation process with the Heritage Committee or neighbours prior to submitting an application for a Heritage Permit application to the City of Ottawa for tennis court lighting in April


  • The City of Ottawa and the (then) Ward Councillor did not notify the RPRA Heritage Committee of the RLTC application upon receipt. The City of Ottawa also did not notify or consult with the RPRA Heritage Committee during their review and approval process. Note: there is a legal obligation for the City to notify the public of all heritage applications except those that the City heritage staff deem to accord with the conditions under which the City staff can exercise Delegated Authority.


  • The RPRA and the wider community therefore only became aware of the application after the Heritage Permit was granted under Delegated Authority on 3 May 2018. The permit was granted on the basis of the 1997 Rockcliffe Park Heritage Conservation District Guidelines, not the Rockcliffe Park Heritage Conservation District Plan, which only came into full force in May 2019.


  • The RPRA became aware of the growing discontent within the community in 2019, and the president of the RPRA sent a letter to the RLTC in early Dec 2019 asking the tennis club to consider foregoing their lighting plans: “The essential equation, in short, is the long-standing heritage character of our community and the legitimate interests of close neighbours vs. the desire of some members to play later … than has been the practice in the past.”


  • Due to the Covid-19 crisis, a public information meeting planned by the RLTC for the 25 March 2020 was cancelled.


  • In April 2020, neighbours of the tennis club legally challenged the City with regards to the approval process for the Heritage Permit, arguing that the RLTC application did not meet the criteria for Delegated Authority, and that the Heritage Permit was therefore invalid. The City’s legal department maintained that their decision was legal.


  • The RLTC has committed to the community in an open letter on 2 May 2020 that: “… the (RLTC) Board has decided to hold off on further project development until there has been ample discussion.”


  • Subsequently, the Heritage Permit expired on 3 May 2020 (two years after approval), as confirmed by the City of Ottawa. Neighbours withdrew their legal challenge.


  • A group of individuals distributed a collection of letters on 9 June 2020, asking residents to email the RPRA and state their objection to any future lighting plans by the RLTC.



Current situation



The RLTC currently has no Heritage Permit for any court lighting, and it is currently unknown to the RPRA if or when the RLTC will pursue future lighting plans.


As a matter of policy, the RPRA and its Heritage Committee generally do not comment on hypothetical or future applications.  Instead, the RPRA (through its Heritage Committee) only provides comments on specific cases, when:


  • An applicant approaches the RPRA Heritage Committee informally prior to the submission of a Heritage Permit application. This is an informal and confidential pre-consultation allowing the applicant to better understand the Heritage Plan, and decide if or how to proceed with a Heritage Permit application to the City of Ottawa.


  • The Heritage Planning Branch of the City of Ottawa invites the RPRA Heritage Committee (and Ward Councillor) to comment as part of a coordinated, formal consultation process upon receipt of an application. Any comments the RPRA Heritage Committee provides are only shared with the City’s Heritage Planning Branch at that stage. The City’s Heritage Planning Branch is solely responsible for preparing a recommendation to the Built Heritage Sub Committee, and City Council.


The RPRA and its Heritage Committee have no decision-making authority in the Heritage Permit process. Only the City of Ottawa can grant Heritage Permits for Rockcliffe Park.


The RPRA Heritage Committee fairly evaluates any specific proposal on its own merits, based on the provisions of the Rockcliffe Park Heritage Plan and in line with the above policies.


The RPRA is bound by its mandate and commitment to uphold the Heritage Plan which recognises the importance of subdued nighttime illumination. The visible night sky, lack of glare, light pollution/spillage and a dimly-lit visual environment are important, defining aspects of our unique neighbourhood that the Heritage Plan seeks to protect. Any lighting that materially diminishes or alters the nighttime character of Rockcliffe Park is in conflict with the purpose and intent of the Heritage Plan.


There are legitimate and fundamental concerns regarding tennis court lighting in the sensitive location of the RLTC. The RPRA appealed to the RLTC in the past not to pursue future lighting plans in recognition of our protected nighttime environment, and in the spirit of being a good neighbour.


The RPRA has offered assistance in seeking alternative ways of improving the club’s membership without the need for court lighting at the RLTC location. The RPRA values the tennis club as an important community facility, and is looking forward to continued dialogue and partnership for the next 97 years.





RPRA Board meeting April 15th

The April 15th RPRA board meeting will be held via teleconferencing. We apologize for any inconvenience, and ask that any public delegations submit their matters of interest in writing to, prior to April 10th. Minutes of the meeting will be posted on the RPRA website.


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