The Sparks Street
Heritage Streetcar Committee

The Committee is a volunteer-based venture comprising representatives from:



The proposed heritage streetcar line could:


Sparks Street

Phase 1

Phase 1: Run a small-sized, heritage-style streetcar on a single track along Sparks Street from the new Convention Centre to Lebreton Flats and the War Museum.

An American rail expert estimated the cost to lay tracks, poles and other infrastructure for Phase 1 would cost approximately $16 Million US. Replica streetcars that are equipped with wheel chair lifts would cost approximately $600,000 US each. A minimum of three replica streetcars would be purchased for Phase 1. The cost for a storage building for the streetcars has not been been finalized at this time.

Phase 2

Simulated depiction of
streetcar on Sparks Street


Interprovincial  Loop



A loop service crossing the existing Prince of Wales rail bridge at Lebreton Flats to Gatineau, back across the Interprovincial Bridge, and returning along MacKenzie Avenue to Confederation Square and Sparks Street. It is also possible to have the Heritage Streetcar link to the Wakefield Steam Train in Gatineau. Then people could transfer to and from the Wakefield steam train to the streetcar and vice versa. Since the town of Chelsea is planning to build a train station in their town, people could also use the streetcar, and then switch to the steam train to get to Gatineau Park. A series of shuttle buses could then be used to bring visitors to Gatineau Park from the Chelsea train station. If all this were to happen, then both tourists and residents of the National Capital Region could travel to Gatineau Park via the streetcar and Steam Train WITHOUT a car. This would be great for tourism and would boast the tourism potential of both Ottawa , Gatineau and Gatineau Park.



  • Streetcar projects are being adopted in cities across the continent. Key reasons are:

  • They substantially enhance the heritage and commercial attractiveness of streets for visitors and residents.

  • They increase commercial vitality.

  • They enhance overall economic development on primary routes and adjacent streets.

  • As a stable in-the-ground commitment by the community to the future, they provide
    long-term economic stability for developers, retailers, and land owners.

  • They provide complementary and stable connectivity within urban transit networks.

  • They provide a “WOW’ factor for tourist- oriented cities throughout the world.  




  • Environmentally friendly and fully accessible. 

  • Eliminates noise, vibration and unsightly overhead wires.

  • Provides a multiple-stop, slow-speed public transportation service that can co-exist with pedestrians. 




Ottawa, Ontario (1951)


Istanbul, Turkey (1986)


Memphis, Tennessee (2004)


Portland, Oregon (2003)


Unlike the large mega projects that are being proposed for Ottawa, this is a small, inexpensive project that has the potential of boosting tourism to the Ottawa area as well as adding a form of transportation that is needed in the downtown area. This system would not compete with other forms of public transit, but instead, it would compliment the transportation network in the core area of Ottawa and Gatineau.

Our group has received a $10,000 grant from the Sparks Street Merchants Association to further develop this proposal.

We are currently meeting with other groups and presenting our proposal to the various stakeholders as well as the pubic in Ottawa.


Go back to Ottawa Streetcar Home Page.

Last Update: July 13, 2011.