Jane's Walk is a festival of free neighbourhood walking tours that help put people in touch with their city, the things that happen around them, the built environment, the natural environment, and especially with each other. Jane's Walk bridges social and geographic gaps and creates a space for cities to discover themselves. The walks are given by local people who care passionately about where they live, work, and play. Jane's Walk is a pedestrian-focused event that improves urban literacy by offering insights into local history, planning, design, and civic engagement through the simple act of walking and observing.
Jane's Walk began in May, 2007 in Toronto, and spread quickly. In 2008, it was held in ten Canadian cities: here in Ottawa, as well as in Charlottetown, Halifax, Toronto, Guelph, London (ON), Thornbury-Clarksburg (ON), Winnipeg, Calgary, and Vancouver. Over 6000 people across Canada took part.
In 2023, Jane's Walk Ottawa-Gatineau welcomed over 1200 participants to more than 30 walks on a weekend of beautiful sunshine. Thank you to all our tour leaders, who volunteer their time and effort in developing and leading their walks, as well as to all who have served and continue to volunteer as marshals during the various walks. Thanks also to all our sponsors and supporters, including Heritage Ottawa, Ecology Ottawa, and CBC Radio 1, without whose effort Jane's Walk would not be possible. A complete list of our sponsors and partners can be found at the bottom of our home page.
Jane's Walk is now a global event. As of 2023, Jane's Walk was held in more than 500 cities in more than forty countries, including Cairo, Tokyo, Panama City, Hong Kong, Helsinki, Melbourne, Guadalajara, Dresden, Kolkata, Algiers, and Zagreb. (In some cities, the event is called Jane Jacobs' Walk.) We hear that Jane's Walk is even held in Second Life. Jane's Walk continues to grow internationally, and is held on the same weekend all across North America. When you come out to the Jane's Walk Ottawa-Gatineau May festival, you join in with thousands of people around the world.
Read more about Jane's Walk on our site, on the Global Jane's Walk site, and in on-line articles:
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