Updates from April, 2017 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 23:41 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    Cell phones are being spied on at the airport, a fact sniffed out by a Radio-Canada reporter (this following other recent news of cellphone surveillance around Parliament Hill in Ottawa). The RCMP is admitting it collects cell phone metadata.

  • Kate 23:35 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    We have a rainfall warning for Thursday morning, with possible flooding in areas prone to that.

  • Kate 23:25 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    A segment of St-Jacques is going to be closed for at least two months, making access to NDG even more difficult.

  • Kate 23:17 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    Every borough is to get a circus show this summer as part of the 375th.

    No news yet about the bread.

    • Ephraim 02:20 on 2017/04/06 Permalink

      Ville Marie already has one… at city hall.

  • Kate 22:30 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    A Superior Court judge has blocked Frank Zampino’s request to halt the Contrecœur trial.

  • Kate 15:08 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    Les Amis de la montagne has set up a petition page to gather support for making Mount Royal a World Heritage Site.

  • Kate 14:52 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    CBC/Radio-Canada is retracting its report that SQ head Martin Prud’homme left for a vacation as the March 14 blizzard hit. Now they’re agreeing with him that he was here the entire week after the storm and only went away a week later.

    • John B 19:24 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      How does a mistake like this happen? Either Prud’homme was in town or he wasn’t, and Caron was either at a party or he wasn’t. The CBC must have been confident in their sources before publishing the original story, which was pretty damning, even if the timelines didn’t quite match up. Their retraction should include both sources of the new information and an explanation of how the old information came to be published if it was so wrong.

    • Kate 00:26 on 2017/04/06 Permalink

      An untrue leak, a misunderstood hint, a bit of malice from inside the SQ, lots of ways the Radio-Canada investigator could have been misled.

      I actually thought Prud’homme should’ve been glad if the A-13 debacle wasn’t his fault because he was away on a well-earned vacation. So he was in town throughout the mismanagement – is that any better?

    • John B 00:55 on 2017/04/06 Permalink

      In my reading of the original article the more damning thing wasn’t that he was out of town, it was that he was supposed to inform the public security officer of his absence, and have one of the people immediately below him appointed as his temporary replacement, and neither of those things had been done.

      For the misinformation – I have never worked anywhere near journalism, but I would have thought something like this wouldn’t be published if there was just one shaky leak to support it. I may have a much too optimistic view of journalism, though.

  • Kate 12:14 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    The mayor says that the recent numbers on higher pedestrian fatalities means there’s no chance of having right turns on red in Montreal.

    • jeather 12:21 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      Great. Now can we not talk about it for 5 years? Please.

    • ant6n 11:59 on 2017/04/06 Permalink

      It’s a politically cheap decision (“continue rules as before because ‘safety'”), meant to encourage support from walking/cycling type downtownies, voters who may vote Projet Montreal. It’s like taking credit for a transit project that’s being pushed hard by the Province.

      It’s a typical neoliberal ploy (i.e. a conservative trying to look progressive), don’t get fooled.

      Project Montreal could push to the right of Coderre and try to capture the votes of drivers by promising to try out right-on-red via explicit signs at some intersections.

  • Kate 11:41 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    We’re paying a little more for electricity as of April 1, just as news comes that the utility has glommed onto $1.4 billion too much since 2008. A spokesman says it’s good news because it all went into government coffers anyway. The CAQ is demanding a refund, saying the take averages out at $350 per customer. TVA link plays video.

    • ant6n 12:27 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      More money for Bombardier? ;-P

    • SMD 12:32 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      “All went into government coffers anyway” –> this is exactly the problem. It was taken regressively from Hydro customers and put right into the general budget. If the provincial government needed that 1.4 billion so badly they could have just raised income taxes, which are progressive. But hiding this income in HQ rate hikes disproportionately hurts poor neighbourhoods like mine, where most residents are tenants and live in badly-insulated homes (it doesn’t help that HQ has cut almost all their free winterizing and home efficiency programs, too). I see that there is a movement to try to force Hydro to return the over-payments, I wish it well.

  • Kate 11:02 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    It will cost at least $400 million to demolish the old Champlain bridge after 2019, and it will take three to four years. Meantime, millions are being spent to keep it going.

    Update: Nice infographic from the Journal showing the proposed stages of the demolition.

    • ste.ph 13:32 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      Couldn’t they keep it for car traffic? I thought it was the BIG trucks that give it the excess wear.

    • Kevin 16:54 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      No. The bridge has been rotting from within for decades because it was not designed to handle road salt.
      If the feds of the 1950s had spent $2 million more for an all-steel deck like the Victoria, crews could have kept patching and replacing bits as they wore out.
      Instead they chose the cheapest option, using the latest technology, (pre-sressed concrete) which also happened to be the one that cannot be repaired.

      It is never a good idea to go with the cheapest upfront cost for anything.

    • jeather 19:07 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      It is sometimes a good idea, depending on what you are buying. But not for infrastructure.

  • Kate 10:52 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    Not the first time this story has been reported, but Pamplemousse looks at how CSDM rent increases are putting the squeeze on community groups that have, till now, had moderate rents to enable them to do their work.

  • Kate 10:42 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    Taxi drivers need a special permit to cover the lucrative airport trade, and it has doubled in price over two years to $760 a month, this on top of whatever other expenses a driver has. Some are feeling themselves squeezed out of the business entirely.

    • Kieran Rankin 14:05 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      I haven’t been to the airport in a while, but last I heard the line-up for travelers waiting for taxis can last longer than an hour. I understand the pricing parity that ADM wants to achieve, but how does our service compare to other airports?

    • Bill Binns 15:14 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      The taxi line at the airport was really bad for a few months last year but has been back to normal since at least Christmas. Not sure what was going on but the lines became bad enough to make the news and cause a bunch of Tweet storms and then the problem disappeared practically overnight.

    • Douglas 18:26 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      With Uber, Taxi drivers are getting squeezed.

    • Kate 18:29 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      Are Uber drivers permitted to do the airport run without paying for these permits?

    • Ephraim 19:07 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      My experience… the drivers who do that run often LIE to tourists to get them to pay more. The sign is in French, not well explained and they will often say it is $50 or $60. I despise dealing with them.

    • JoeNotCharles 19:10 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      Since when has what they’re “allowed” to do mattered to Uber?

      Teo drivers service the airport (or at least I’d hope they do, since they have ads posted there.)

    • Kate 20:12 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      Teo really pushes the airport service. The app is sort of “want to go to the airport? Please? Please? No? Aw, OK.”

    • ant6n 21:50 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      uber has the deal with the Province and the airport now, so you can pick up an uber from the airport. They wait nearby, so you may have to wait a couple of minutes before they come pick you up at the designated spot at the airport (although you also may wait a long time for a cab if there’s a line). There’s an extra airport fee (3$), and there’s a Quebec booking fee (2.48$), and overall a trip downtown came down to almost 40$ when I tried it.

    • Ephraim 21:54 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      Teo picks you up at door 6 upstairs. It’s about 10 minutes to wait but it’s clean, it’s electric and the driver doesn’t hee and haw when you want help with putting the luggage in or out of the car. Same $40 plus tip. Worth it!

    • mare 22:46 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      @Kate every taxi can bring passengers to the airport. Only taxis with this special permit can pick passengers up (and hope you’re a native montrealer who doesn’t go to the city centre so they can charge you the actual meter fare, which is often more.)

      UberX cars are hauled by you through an app so they *think* they don’t need this special permit, because they’re not taxis. And I’m sure during this try-out period they negotiated that they don’t need a permit.

      Teo taxis might use the same loophole, but more likely, have the permit.

    • Kate 23:44 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      Uber is also swamping every job category on craigslist now. Disruptive businesses. So delightful.

    • Ephraim 03:14 on 2017/04/06 Permalink

      Uber hires everyone as a contractor, so they don’t have to guarantee minimum wage. They also don’t tell you that you need at least an F plate in Quebec to legally deduct many of your expenses. And that you are supposed to have at least a registered company to make tax deductions, so these poor people are often paid, legally, below minimum wage.

      Not to mention that Uber has been caught already violating their agreement with the Quebec government and is in court because they are trying to avoid paying taxes. As of the 1st of June, they are responsible to pay all sales taxes. My prediction, Uber will eventually leave Quebec and most of Canada… can’t make money without cheating on taxes.

      Incidentally, AirBnB started to WARN people to declare everything on their income taxes… not just the Quebec government going after the undeclared income…. I just wish we could charge the CEOs of these companies with racketeering.

    • Kevin 09:05 on 2017/04/06 Permalink

      As an investor, the gig economy is great. Paying schmucks less than minimum wage with no benefits? Go for it.

      As an employee and a member of society: Don’t be a schmuck. Don’t undersell yourself. You’ll end up in your 40s with no savings, no prospects, and wondering how to make ends meet.

    • Kate 10:13 on 2017/04/06 Permalink

      Kevin, boy, does that sound familiar.

  • Kate 10:25 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    Denis Coderre held a presser Tuesday on the city’s new push on composting including a terse new commercial by chef Martin Picard in which the word “compostage” isn’t even spoken. Coderre says composting was up in 2016, with 64% of smaller residential buildings now having a bin, but Projet points out that bigger buildings and businesses have no plan and that the city’s intention to build its own composting installations have bogged down.

    • Blork 12:21 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      I have a photograph of some big compost heaps from a Ville de Montréal composting pilot project. That was 1990.

  • Kate 03:16 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    Three teenagers have been arrested after allegedly beating up two blue collar workers in a St‑Laurent park. The park chalet has been closed since the incident. Philippe Teisceira-Lessard’s film noir account of the quartier Chameran – 15,000 people living on 9 hectares, 64% of them immigrants, average income $21,194 – suggests a scene very different from the pleasant streets and park you’ll see on Streetview.

    • rue david 14:20 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      there’s nothing to goddamned do up there. those projects are plopped square in the middle of nowhere, it’s hell even to visit. i helped a friend’s dad move up there (it was near his work) and i couldn’t believe where i was. block after block of nothing but ramshackle housing. no wonder these kids turn out so rotten – all they have is the odd park, plus video games/teevee, whatever booze/drugs they can hustle, sex, and roaming around. they’re not even near a metro stop. if that were my existence, i’d probably give up on life too.

    • Kate 15:13 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      rue david, are we talking about the same place? The area is a bit enclavé, but it’s a step from the 121 bus, which passes often and can take you east or west to the orange line. There are two AMT stations adjacent – not the best schedule, admittedly. It’s no further from downtown than Lasalle or eastern Rosemont.

    • MtlWeb39 22:22 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      Live a couple of blocks from the chalet/park. It is a nice park with pool (regular and toddler), basketball nets, tennis court, play area for young children, and decent amount of grass. Half a block over (corner Deguire/JulesPoitras) is a fenced in double soccer field where kids will play pick up games. Cross the HBourrassa bridge and there is Park St. Laurent which also has similar activities including more greenery.
      Kate, you’re right, the 121/171 buses can take one west to Cote Vertu station, Place Vertu or east to Henri Bourrassa/Ahuntsic/Fleury area.
      These kids are your usual trouble-makers who throughout the year, give the lifeguards headaches and think they’re on a Narcos set. Cop friend of mine told me that area/buildings around the park had been site of major arms/drug bust years ago.
      Sorry rueDavid, we all grew up ‘bored’ with life but only a few of the wacks would get violent with the adults in parks/pools.

    • rue david 00:42 on 2017/04/06 Permalink

      Answer is market housing, commercial construction, and even her a high Street. Literally, the city should appropriate nsomw of that grass, build shops and rent then for very little.

  • Kate 03:06 on 2017/04/05 Permalink | Reply  

    The melting snow is a toxic mess, after soaking up contaminants all winter like a sponge.

    • Ian 09:46 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      And yet nobody will reduce the number of cars in the city. Smoking ban, fireplace ban, whatever, we all know the biggest cause of air pollution in the city is traffic. You can’t smoke on a patio because it might be dangerous to others, but somehow the exhaust from passing traffic isn’t an issue. Cars and trucks are doing us in, and it’s all the worse because it’s the elephant in the room no government agency at any level is willing to address.

    • Blork 12:46 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      This isn’t a new discovery. This is why they stopped dumping snow into the river during snow removal operations. What remains unknown (at least to me) is how toxic the alternative is; those enormous “snow mountains” that are created every winter and then melt into the ground come spring.

      A few years ago I saw an absolutely huge snow mountain form a few km from my place. By the last snowfall it was big enough to use as a ski run. At least six stories tall. As it melted, it got darker and darker until it looked like a lump of black sludge (by that time it was only 10 feet tall or so). The next year they dumped elsewhere, probably because that area is slated for residential development, and those toxic snow piles likely render such areas uninhabitable after a few years.

    • Kate 22:51 on 2017/04/05 Permalink

      Blork, I saw this one the other day in St-Laurent when I went there for election training. There’s no hill in that spot, it’s all snow. I’ve seen a bigger one in Anjou – not this year – but haven’t got a photo.

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