Hyperlocal Q&A with Trevor Pritchard
Trevor Pritchard is one of 12 bloggers who'll be telling his neighbourhood's stories on Hyperlocal - Canada Writes' interactive story map, launching April 3rd. Trevor lives in Hintonburg, Ottawa.
Tell us about yourself.
I’m a freelance writer who occasionally fills in at CBC Radio in Ottawa. I’m also “editor emeritus” with local arts-and-culture blog Apartment613, which essentially means I eavesdrop on email conversations and nitpick writers’ grammar, much to everyone’s enjoyment. Previously, I was the news curator for OpenFile Ottawa and a reporter at the Cornwall Standard-Freeholder. I’ve lived in Ottawa since 2006, always in Hintonburg. I know, you’re jealous. It’s okay.
Tell us about your neighbourhood.
Oh, Hintonburg. Things were so different when I first moved to this neighbourhood, which was founded in the 1890s and sits a pleasant 15-minute bike ride from Parliament Hill. The trendy baby clothing store on Wellington Street was a smoke shop. The indie burger joint was a KFC. The Elmdale Oyster House and Tavern was simply the Elmdale Tavern, and it served punches to the sternum, not po’ boys.
These days, Hintonburg is a mecca of gentrification. I can literally roll out of bed and be eating an artisanal maple-bacon doughnut in, like, five minutes. In the time it’s taken you to read this, a new Vietnamese sub truck or ceviche cantina has probably opened on our main strip. But that’s okay! Because Hintonburg is also home to some of the nicest, most community-minded people I know. And in their hands, I’m pretty excited about the neighbourhood’s potential.
What are some of your favourite neighbourhood destinations?
The Parkdale Market, where fruit and vegetable lovers can procure eggplants the size of small dogs. The Hintonburg Public House, a recently-opened gastropub. The front steps of the stunning l'Eglise Saint-Francois d'Assise. My nearby Bridgehead coffee shop, as much for the Americanos as for the fact I can wait there for my bus without developing hypothermia. The Rosemount Library, the oldest library branch in the city.
How is your neighbourhood changing?
I’ve sort of gotten into this already, but Hintonburg was once one of the city's most dangerous neighbourhoods. It’s come a long way since then, but there are still occasional reminders that—despite the cafes and art galleries and all the other hallmarks of gentrification—things haven't necessarily changed.
Trevor Pritchard is a freelance writer who occasionally fills in at CBC Radio in Ottawa, and an “editor emeritus” with local arts-and-culture blog Apartment613. Previously, he was the news curator for OpenFile Ottawa and a reporter at the Cornwall Standard-Freeholder.
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