Local families out for a stroll on Bank Street in the Glebe neighbourhood of Ottawa will notice a special art collection displayed on the temporary fence of the development site of Amica The Glebe, opening in 2021. It’s just one way that Amica embraces the communities in which our residences are located, and how we design to reflect the culture of the surrounding neighbourhood.
This community art project represents a collaboration between Amica and local seniors from Abbotsford House and The Glebe Centre, which has been dedicated to serving older adults in in the City of Ottawa for more than 130 years. Amica invited local seniors in the Glebe Centre’s art therapy program to paint representations of their favourite trees in the neighbourhood. Neither cognitive nor physical impairments held back these artists: the display concept for their diverse paintings was unveiled at The Glebe Centre’s annual Art Fair. These uplifting works of art prove that age is no barrier to making a mark in one’s community.
The nature theme of the paintings was inspired by a request from a local community member to save a Norway maple tree she’d been admiring for years that would be impacted by construction of Amica The Glebe. Alison Keller, Amica’s Site Development Ambassador, was instantly drawn to the community member’s passion for the maple. “I knew Amica would want to help her make sure it was moved to a good home,” Keller said.
While an arborist reported that the maple was too mature to be moved safely, he noticed the site featured two other trees — a honey locust and a hackberry — that were native species and the perfect size to be transplanted. The trees were moved to Abbotsford House on the property of The Glebe Centre in the fall of 2018. Amica unveiled a dedication plaque for the trees honouring the Glebe neighbourhood’s passion for preserving its trees.
“Amica is dedicated to the preservation, beautification and wellbeing of the neighbourhoods where our residences are located,” says Robert Ezer, CIO at Amica. “This community art project and tree dedication project are just the beginning of our efforts to engage with and support the thriving Glebe community.”
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