Safety in Downtown Rideau
Safety Programs compliment maintenance services. Both are essential elements to providing a superior quality of life experience in Downtown Rideau. The Rideau B.I.A. pursues, in consultation with police and area stakeholders, the creation, development and management of a variety of safety programs to address ‘comfort’ levels in Downtown Rideau:
The DRBIA annually hires private security to assist with crowd control and protect private property during special events such as Canada Day. The ‘Downtown Patrol’ monitors Downtown Rideau in late evening and early morning hours. They perform door checks, respond to building security alarms, call in response from police and assist police upon request. They are also an information resource for public and tourism inquiries and the B.I.A.’s “eyes on the street”.
Ottawa Police Service
The DRBIA works closely with the Ottawa Police to help ensure that Downtown Rideau remains a safe place to work, live and visit.
Safety Audits & Lighting
The Downtown Rideau B.I.A., along with the municipal, police and community resources conducts annual safety audits of Downtown Rideau. The audit identifies opportunities to improve safety in the area, which mostly pertain to lighting issues. The BIA contacts property owners and other stakeholders with requests to address concerns noted with their property and does a follow up to determine whether action has been taken.
The Rideau B.I.A. recognizes an opportunity to utilize transit security resources in Downtown Rideau and is pursuing discussions with local transit authorities to this end. Discussions could include transit drivers reporting activity to police, increased lighting, video surveillance and late night/early morning vehicle patrols.
Numerous studies conclude that serene music and engaging activity minimizes civil disobedience and loitering in public spaces. In support of this theory, the Rideau B.I.A. is pursuing the installation of music and street theatre performances in high pedestrian traffic areas to discourage negative social behaviour.
To discourage loitering, and consequently obstruction of entering businesses and the destruction of flowers and trees, the Rideau B.I.A. installed iron “picket” railings on the edges of tree planters along Rideau Street.
Have a Heart – Give Smart is a public outreach campaign created by the Downtown Ottawa Coalition for a Safe Community (DOCSC) to educate downtown Ottawa residents, employees and visitors about the issue of panhandling. While panhandling is often associated with homelessness, most panhandlers are not homeless. In many cases, giving money to panhandlers supports drug and alcohol addiction.