WELCOME TO SPARKS STREET - OTTAWA, CANADA
Downtown Ottawa's linear "Town Square" and Open Air Mall
in the center of Canada's Capital. Discover historical architecture, amazing shopping, great dining,
and awesome events, including some of the Ottawa's
biggest festivals such as Ribfest, Poutinefest and the
International Busker Festival.
Located in the Parliamentary
Sparks Street is one of Ottawa's most
significant heritage streets. It was
founded in the early 1800's by
- one of the City Fathers of Ottawa. He cut a
path through the woods that would eventually
become Sparks Street.
After Queen Victoria selected Ottawa to be the
Capital of Canada, Sparks Street became the
thriving commercial centre for the Ottawa valley
and home for government offices and parliament
members. In 1868, D'Arcy McGee, a noted
Politician, was assassinated outside of his home
at the corner of Sparks and Metcalfe.
Sparks Street began to thrive in the early
twentieth-century. During that time a number of
Beaux-Arts buildings were built - many of which
still stand today.
In an attempt to improve business, a plan
was introduced in 1961 to temporarily close Sparks
Street to vehicular traffic, thus transforming
Sparks Street into a pedestrian mall.
The plan was a huge success and it convinced the
City of Ottawa to permanently close the street
to vehicles creating North America's first
permanent outdoor pedestrian mall.
Today, Sparks Street is a thriving commercial
centre comprising many blocks and is home to
some of Ottawa's best shopping and a wide
variety of events and activities throughout the