July 28, 2018
Should motorists be banned from using certain streets in the ByWard Market?
The executive director of Ottawa Markets would like to see that happen.
“People are certainly getting away from their cars a little bit, around the world, and particularly [when it comes to] public spaces and public markets,” Jeff Darwin told CBC Radio’s In Town And Out.
Ottawa Markets is the organization in charge of municipal buildings in the market area. It’s looking into the idea of keeping cars off William Street and ByWard Market Square — the two adjacent streets to the market building — on weekends.
Darwin said that his organization recently closed off ByWard Market Square to host a movie night, and more than 300 people attended.
“We kept a close eye on the barricades. We figure, from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m., we may have inconvenienced maybe 20 cars,” he said.
Darwin also pointed to last year’s La Machine event, when the market had rolling closures and thousands of people took to the streets.
“Nobody died. All the merchants were very happy. They were running out of food. They did a lot of business.”