Public Notice

Mud Lake Trail Rehabilitation – Phase 1 – Trail and Landscape Improvements – Public Comments Invited

September 27, 2022 The National Capital Commission must determine whether the proposed Mud Lake Trail Rehabilitation – Phase 1 – Trail and Landscape Improvements, located in Ottawa, Ontario is likely to cause significant adverse environmental effects in compliance with sections 81-91 of the Impact Assessment Act and the National Capital Act.

To help inform this determination, the National Capital Commission is inviting comments from the public respecting that determination. It is important to note that all comments received will be considered public. For more information, individual should consult the Privacy Notice on the Registry website.


Written comments for this project must be submitted within 30 days of the date of this posting, referencing project name and registry number:


By email:

By mail: Environmental Officer, Environmental Assessment group

40 Elgin, 5th floor

Ottawa, ON, Canada

K1P 1C7


The National Capital Commission thanks you for your comments, which will be considered in the project determination. Please note that responses may not be provided.


For National Capital Commission general inquiries, please contact:


Telephone: 613-239-5000 or 1-800-465-1867 (toll-free)

TTY: 613-239-5090 or 1-866-661-3530 (toll-free)


The Proposed Project

The National Capital Commission (NCC) is planning work on the Mud Lake Trail Network to improve flood resiliency and universal accessibility. The project will take place in two separate phases. This public registry covers Phase 1 of the project. The Phase 2 of the project will be posted to the public registry and assessed cumulatively once the design is completed. 


Phase 1, planned for fall 2022, will include: 

  • Replacing the wooden decking at the viewing platform t overlooking the lake. 
  • Adding bollards, new garbage and recycling bins, and landscaping improvements to three main entrances. 
  • Raising and levelling sections of stone dust trails.
  • Site preparation, including tree cutting, for the installation of the new pedestrian bridge
  • Adding an armor stone block at the lookout near Cassels Street. 


Phase 2, planned for winter and spring 2023, will include: 

  • Replacement of the floating bridge with a universally accessible pedestrian bridge.  


Nestled along the Ottawa River, Mud Lake is a 60-hectare natural environment providing habitat for a wide diversity of animal species. Located within the Lac Deschênes–Ottawa River Important Bird Area in a major migratory corridor, it serves as an important environment for bird conservation, and is recognized as one of the most popular urban sites for birdwatching in Canada. It is also identified as a provincially significant wetland and an Area of Natural and Scientific Interest by the Government of Ontario. Mud Lake is also referred to as the Britannia Conservation Area and is publicly owned and managed by the National Capital Commission. 


Mud Lake's system of trails comprises of a main official trail that circles around Mud Lake in addition to secondary official trails that connect to the surrounding Britannia area. The official trails are mainly comprised of dirt or stone dust with some small culverts, as well as boardwalks. The Mud Lake Trail Rehabilitation project is mainly focused on the main official trail around Mud Lake.  


The objectives of Phase 1 of the project include the following: 

  1. Improve trail network connectivity and universal accessibility. 
  2. Rehabilitate assets that are part of the recreational experience. 
  3. Improve the trail network resilience to flooding events and maintain year-round public access.
  4. Improve garbage and recycling collection. 
  5. Site preparation for the installation of the new pedestrian bridge.


Phase 1 construction will begin Fall 2020 and will include the following components: 

  • Close portions of the trail network prior to the start of work. 
  • Install alternative trail network options for park users for the duration of the work. 
  • Replace the decking of the viewing platform overlooking the lake. 
  • Add an armor stone block at the lookout near Cassels Street. 
  • Install exclusion measures for wildlife around the existing floating bridge (preparation for phase 2, Winter 2023).  
  • Add gravel and stone dust to existing trails to improve access and connectivity during flooding events. 
  • Displace rocks, stumps, and dead roots off the trail network to improve universal accessibility. 
  • Add bollards, garbage and recycling bins at three main trail entrances. 
  • Plant native plants to improve landscape at three main trail entrances.
  • Removal of the existing pedestrian bridge.
  • Additional benefits to the project include management and incidental removal of non-native invasive plants.


Several trees are planned to be removed by the NCC as part of the project. The purpose of the removal is to accommodate a corridor for the new pedestrian bridge to be installed using a helicopter and to ensure the safety of trail users. The NCC will develop a landscape plan and will plant a minimum of 2 new native trees for every one tree removed. Shrubs will also be integrated into the landscape to improve the habitat.


With the help of the National Capital Commission's biologists, environmental officers and engineers, as well as external environmental consultants, the project team will develop a mitigation plan to avoid, reduce or compensate for any environmental effects caused by the project. Proposed mitigation measures will include the use of exclusion fencing for wildlife, working outside key nesting periods, working outside key fish spawning periods, installation of sediment barriers, contractor training and regular on-site inspections. Temporary closures and detours will be communicated to the public through clear signage and online platforms.  

Document Reference Number: 3

Date modified: