Thanks to a tweet from @ottawacity, a question from @bikelanes_ca and a response from @pastottawa, a photo of Sparks Street and a painting (a postcard?) of the photo (except with a car added).
The date is not clear. The Past Ottawa link says view from Russell House, 1902. So presumably the photo would have been from before that. It’s definitely before 1928 because the Russell House hotel was demolished then. It’s the corner of Sparks and Elgin, looking west. Before 1928 Sparks continued east from Elgin (the Federal government expropriated the land and replaced it with the wider split Elgin and Confederation Square).
It would be nice to get more info from the City of Ottawa Archives but they don’t appear to have an online catalogue or online images.