Ottawa police and the city of Ottawa will provide an update on plans for the “Rolling Thunder” event today, one day before more than 500 motorcycles and vehicles are expected to begin rolling into town.
Interim Chief Steve Bell, Mayor Jim Watson and city officials will hold a media conference at 9:45 a.m. to “provide an update on plans to prepare for this weekend’s event.” CTVNewsOttawa.ca will broadcast the media conference live.
Residents are being told to expect to see an increased police presence in the downtown and ByWard Market areas, while a motor vehicle exclusionary zone will be set up prohibiting any motor vehicles involved in a rally, protest or demonstration from entering.
The exclusion zone stretches from Waller Street to Bronson Avenue and Wellington Street to Laurier Avenue, along with the ByWard Market area from MacKenzie Avenue to King Edward Avenue and Rideau Street to Murray Street.
Bell told council on Wednesday that no roads will be closed, and residential and business traffic, pedestrians, cyclists and OC Transpo will be able to access the area.
“Controlled intersections, new no parking and no stopping areas, road closures, vehicle towing and ticketing will be part of the enforcement strategy,” Bell said.
RCMP and OPP officers will be deployed in Ottawa, along with officers from municipal police forces. The Ottawa Police Services Board approved granting 831 RCMP officers special constable status to work in Ottawa during the event.
Community Solidarity Ottawa
Community Solidarity Ottawa says the city of Ottawa and Ottawa police are “on track to fail us once again” during this weekend’s event.
The coalition of labour unions, community organizations and residents will hold a media conference at 10:30 a.m. at the Human Rights Monument on Elgin Street.
“The City of Ottawa and the Ottawa Police Service failed to keep residents safe from the so-called Freedom Convoy occupation of Ottawa this past February. They are now on track to fail us once again,” Community Solidarity Ottawa said in a statement.
“Labour, community organizations and residents are standing up to demonstrate that far-right hate is not welcome in our community and that we will protect one another. We are here to Steal their Thunder.”
Community Solidarity Ottawa is planning an “Unwelcome Party” on Friday.
Rolling Thunder Ottawa
The biker convoy is scheduled to arrive on Friday, with a rally and march scheduled for Parliament Hill at 6 p.m.
The majority of the events are set for Saturday, including a “Veterans For Freedom” service at the National War Memorial and a rally and march on Parliament Hill.
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