History enthusiasts will fall in love with Old Ottawa South. This small Ottawa neighbourhood, nestled between the Rideau Canal and the Rideau River, boasts a rich history dating back to the early 1800s. Many of these historic landmarks have been preserved, creating a unique and eclectic atmosphere.
Shortly after confederation this area was referred to as Rideauville, but as the area expanded and became annexed to Ottawa in 1907, the name was changed to Ottawa South. It wasn’t until the 1990s that the “Old” was added to its name in an effort to separate it from the ever-expanding area south of the community.
The area is known for its rich history that can be observed in the century old buildings or along the main street in one of the many antique shops. Although this community was built on a foundation of early settlers, it has evolved over time to become a modern community with a small town atmosphere, providing the very best environment to raise a family.
Old Ottawa South is home to a very active community which provides an atmosphere of small town living but with the amenities of city life. It combines eclectic shopping with natural beauty, and historic buildings with modern condominiums. It is the perfect balance between old and new, big and small. As you walk past the historic Mayfair Theatre, you can’t help but think of days gone by and appreciate the simplicity of life and your new neighbourhood. This is a community that is built on a foundation of history and small town living, so don’t be surprised as people smile and say hello as you are enjoying a cold drink on a local patio. There is a friendly and lively atmosphere in Old Ottawa South. It is difficult to explain but once you feel it, you will never be able to leave. This environment is perfect for raising a family and enjoying a slower paced life in the heart of Ottawa, Ontario.
When the weekend hits, you won’t have any issues finding something fun and exciting to do in Old Ottawa South.
When the weather is nice, why not get outside and enjoy the abundance of bike paths, walking trails and parks in the area. Within seconds you can be enjoying the sights and sounds of the breath-taking Rideau River or the Historic Rideau Canal. There is no better way to enjoy the sunshine then by taking a relaxing stroll or bike ride along the Rideau waterway.
If your kids are bored with the gorgeous river views then it is time to head to Brewer Park in the West or Windsor Park in the East. Regardless, both parks are within walking distance and offer amazing activities such as tennis, wading pools, baseball diamonds, basketball nets and of course, a soccer field. Spend the day at the park and watch your children effortlessly fall asleep that night.
If you happen to be in the mood for a little bit of shopping then you are in luck, as Old Ottawa South provides a very nice, eclectic mix of stores for your shopping pleasure. Known for its antiquing stores, you are bound to find a priceless treasure whilst browsing shops such as Artique, birdy & bug and of course the amazing Champagne dit Lambert.
As your stomach begins to growl, you can make a quick pit stop at the funky Carmen’s Veranda or the incredible Taylor’s Genuine Kitchen & Wine. For dessert, you will have to choose between Life of Pie, Stella Luna Gelato Café and of course the Buttercream Bakery. This will not be an easy decision and as a result you may end up going to all three, so wear your stretchy pants. Besides the normal day-to-day activities, the Old Ottawa South Community Association is very active and as such hosts a variety of events such as various Fall and Winter Festivals. There is also the ever popular Porch Sale occurring every September which provides incoming students the perfect opportunity to furnish their new digs. Throughout the year you will also be able to look forward to the Brighton Beach Clam bake and the Pansy Street Block Party. Old Ottawa South has an active community and as such there is always something going on, so get outside and enjoy the wide range of activities that make life fun and entertaining.
With roughly 300 residences and buildings currently on Ottawa’s Heritage Reference List, it should come as no surprise that many of the home styles in the area are historic. Whilst many of the century old homes have been updated and modernised, great care has gone into retaining the charm and character of these historic treasures. It is important to note that not all of the homes in Old Ottawa South were built in the early 1900’s. There are plenty of new, modern detached homes in the area, especially close the Rideau Canal and on the corresponding side streets. These homes are perfect for raising your family and enjoying a high quality of life. As you move closer to Bank Street or the Carleton University campus, you will find some condominium and apartment options. These mid and low rise buildings are perfect for enjoying all the amenities that come with living in the Ottawa core. So whether you are raising a family and need a little more space or you are about to kick off your first year at Carleton University, you are bound to find something that fits your style in Old Ottawa South.
The two priorities of the Old Ottawa South Community Association are to promote environmental sustainability and walkability. As such, you will find little issues with pollution in this area. There are several walking trails, rivers and parks scattered throughout the community creating an environmentally friendly and pollution-free atmosphere. Although you can walk anywhere in the community, Bank Street and Sunnyside Street tend to host a considerable amount of traffic as they connect this area with the rest of the city. The City of Ottawa and the Old Ottawa South Traffic Committee has been working on implementing a traffic-calming plan to reduce noise and increase safety. For the most part, unless you live directly on Bank or Sunnyside Street, you shouldn’t have an issue with noise pollution. Similarly, the community is committed to reducing the impacts of traffic in Old Ottawa South.
The crime rate for Old Ottawa South is a good news story given that it is much lower than the Ottawa average. Creating an even happier ending to this story is the fact that the crime rate has decreased by roughly 10% over the last three years. Considering the statistics and active community, this is one Ottawa neighbourhood where you won’t feel afraid to walk down the street.
Carleton University is a prominent fixture in the Old Ottawa South neighbourhood as it contributes to the lively atmosphere and positive feeling of the community. On an academic level, Carleton is known for its creative and interdisciplinary approach to research and teaching. This coupled with the emphasis the University places on its students creates an amazing learning environment for your child to transition into an adult.
Long before they get to University or make that transition into adulthood, your child will have the opportunity to attend one of the finest high schools in the city, the Glebe Collegiate Institute. Students at this high school are encouraged to keep an open mind and develop a broad range of academic interests. Similarly, there are many extracurricular activities that your child will enjoy. The Glebe Collegiate Institute also offers French immersion, English as a second language and advanced placement courses.
If your child is still at the age where they simply get to run around during recess, then you will love the fact that there are a few high quality elementary schools in the area. Located in the heart of Old Ottawa South is Hopewell Avenue Public School, which puts an emphasis on developing upstanding citizens who contribute to their broader community. Living just south of The Glebe, your child will also have the option to attend Mutchmor Public School, which is one of the few schools that offer a congregated gifted class for grades 1 through 6. On the private side, there is the Glebe Montessori School, which is close to Old Ottawa South and puts a special emphasis on science and French programs. Finding the perfect school for your child will be easy given the excellent options available for residents of Old Ottawa South.
Getting to and from Old Ottawa South couldn’t be easier. There are four major bus routes that service this area. OC Transpo routes 1, 4, 5 and 7 travel through Old Ottawa South as they connect the Eastern Ottawa neighbourhoods to the Hunt Club and Billings Bridge communities. Carleton University, and consequently Old Ottawa South, is also a major stop for the O-Train. This light rail service connects residents to the northern and southern areas of the city.
Old Ottawa South is one of the best communities in Ottawa to raise a family. The close proximity to high quality schools, the low crime rate and the abundance of activities create an ideal location for you and your family. Your children will never be bored considering the number of camps and events put on by the Old Ottawa South Community Association. As well, there are an abundance of parks such as Brighton Beach, Windsor Park and Brewer Park which are perfect for tiring out energetic children. The home styles in Old Ottawa South are also very conducive to family life as they are typically large with an abundance of outdoor space, because what kid doesn’t love playing in the backyard? Whether you are looking to raise your family or you simply want to experience city living without giving up the small community atmosphere, Old Ottawa South is the perfect neighbourhood for you.