Updates from May, 2017 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 11:58 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    The Snowbirds are to do a flyby over town Tuesday but the time keeps getting changed and, as I post, I don’t know if it’s already over or still about to happen. Also, I live far enough from the waterfront, and under a YUL flight path already, that I might not hear a thing.

    12:06. There they go. People rushed into the street, and my cat got spooked. But by the time people heard them and reacted, they were well out of sight.

    Update: CBC has a tweeted video showing all the planes, albeit at a distance.

    • Blork 12:16 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Some planes from La Patrouille de France went past about 15 minutes ago (just before noon), going from west to east.

    • Blork 12:22 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      (Snowbirds were probably there too, but all I saw were the French planes…)

    • Bert 14:19 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      The Patrouille have been in North America for about a month now. ( http://airshowstuff.com/v4/2017/patrouille-de-france-officially-announces-airshow-schedule-for-2017-north-american-tour/ )

      They were in Gatineau on Sunday for a performance, which was cut short due to weather. You know the rain we got yesterday….. The Snowbirds did a full routine as part of the Aero 150 celebrations at the Gatineau Executive Airport just east of Gaatineau proper.

      They were heading to a fly-by in Quebec City and then to take a left to go to Bagotville, overnight and prep for the flight home.

    • John B 14:24 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      I was at the show in Gatineau. It was pretty cool, (and also freezing cold). Snowbirds are scheduled to perform here on May “13-14.” I’m guessing that means two shows.

    • John B 14:27 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      They just posted a photo on Twitter of their view of the Old Port.

    • Bert 15:26 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Thanks John B. Further to your post, the Snowbirds will be at the St Hubert Airport for a 2 day air-show…. https://fr-ca.facebook.com/events/680338532141572/

      I was supposed to go to the show in Gatineau but chickened out due to the weather. I caught most of the show on the more-or-less reliable webcast. It looks like they will get more of the same this weekend.

    • John B 17:15 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Looks like the actual shows are at the Old Port as part of the 375th, but they’re probably operating out of St-Hubert.

  • Kate 11:32 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    Testimonies continue in the Contrecœur trial, which you can follow using the appropriate hashtag on Twitter. Jeanne Corriveau is covering it Tuesday for Le Devoir, with Benoit Labonté (remember him?) about to take the stand. Linda Gyulai is also one to watch as she tweets the trial.

    This may be the only time the depredations of the Tremblay administration are submitted to justice, but on the whole I’m finding little public engagement in the matter.

  • Kate 10:27 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    Not only did Gilles Deguire only have to serve a month of his six-month sentence for sexually touching a minor, he had “super protection” while behind bars, allowed to live in a solitary cell and not subjected to the company of other prisoners. His previous history as a mayor and long career in the police are given as an excuse for the special treatment, although I can’t help thinking maybe a little “special treatment” from other prisoners was just what Deguire needed.

    • Patrick 12:40 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Sorry, I don’t agree, tempting as it is to imagine such a scenario. There’s way too much indulgence of prison violence. I can’t count the number of times I’ve heard gleeful jokes about bad guys getting raped in jail. Of course there should be no special privileges for a guy like Deguire, but no one’s body should be violated, ever.

    • Kate 12:46 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      I wouldn’t’ve seriously proposed it. Just… entertained the idea.

    • Chris 21:37 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      I gotta agree with Patrick.

    • LaurentG 22:03 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      So, eye for an eye, rape the rapists, kill the killers.

    • Kate 22:19 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Nobody said that, Laurent. I only hope that Deguire felt enough vulnerability simply from being in jail to know now in his gut what being vulnerable means.

    • Joe Mason 00:18 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      Uh, solitary confinement is generally considered psychological torture, not a perk.

    • Kate 00:22 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      It depends. Over a long time, yes. A single month, for a guy Deguire’s age, a longtime cop, and with that conviction? He knew he was being protected from the other prisoners.

      If he had “super protection” he probably had access to video and books, too. Possibly better food. Whether his family visited would depend on how they felt about his conviction, including whether the victim was a relative, and we don’t have any information about that. Deguire got a month-long retreat.

    • JaneyB 09:13 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      I hear you Kate. We feel this way because the system is not doing its job. Plus he is benefiting from his position in society and worse, at the expense of a child. Most people would probably rather he just did a 5 year sentence and that prison rape and solitary were abolished. Instead, more powerful people have decided he is basically above the law. Vile situation on all accounts.

    • Ian 11:19 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      To be fair this is Canada, getting shanked for being a sexual predator is way more likely than getting raped. Not that I advocate either, of course.

  • Kate 10:23 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    Westmount is so unhappy with noise from the Turcot – not just the construction, but the completed project – that they want to sue the transport ministry, to which I would respond:
    1. What did you think was going to happen with a major highway on your doorstep?
    2. Are you planning to drive on the completed structure?
    3. Do you give even the faintest damn how this thing affects anyone else, or is this just about keeping precious Westmount quiet?

    • Zeke 10:49 on 2017/05/02 Permalink


      7th paragraph: “Contrary to the initial plan submitted by the transport ministry in 2008 to the provincial environment department and to Westmount that promised the stretch of highway bordering the municipality would be lowered by five to six metres compared to the current one, cutting noise levels in the municipality, the new plans indicate the highway will remain at roughly the same levels as before.”

      If I were to promise in 2008 to pay you $10,000 in 2017, but in 2017 changed my mind and decided to pay you only $200. What would you do?

    • Kate 11:19 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      OK, so that, plus the pedestrian bridge between NDG and Sud-Ouest, these can’t be the only lies the ministry told to get everyone on side with the project.

      But let’s not kid ourselves. Even while complaining, most people will still be driving on it, when it’s completed.

    • Tim S. 14:52 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      I would like to see less noise everywhere. I wouldn’t look at this from the angle of “is this just about keeping Westmount quiet” but from the angle of “what is Montreal/Quebec” doing for the rest of us. If every municipality stuck up for its people the way Westmount is trying to do, then maybe there would be actual changes in the way things are done – such as less use of the highway.

    • PO 15:08 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      They refused to allow access to the MUHC via the emergency road on non-residential Glen/Courcelle during the construction, forcing the noise and danger and inconvenience of trucks and equipment onto the residential streets of NDG.

      Let them deal with the noise.

    • John B 17:19 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      From Tim S: ” If every municipality stuck up for its people the way Westmount is trying to do…”

      Say what you will about Westmount, their city government seems to really fight for their citizens. If every city did that it could be detrimental, (refer to the lack of coordination between entrenched camps south of the border), but, especially in something like this, Tim’s right.

      What’s to loose by lowering the highway & keeping Westmount quiet? Will St-Henri be louder? If so, was there some sort of tradeoff made? If not, why isn’t it being done?

    • Douglas 17:46 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      If every municipality acted pompously like Westmount Montreal would still be stuck in 1950 with nothing going on.

      Westmount only acts that pompously because of the rich citizens that live there.

    • Tim S. 18:27 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      @ Douglas: having lived there for a few years (but no longer), I don’t think it’s accurate to say that Westmount acts the way it does because of the wealthy people that live there. The wealthy, by and large, live in their bubbles and have pretty limited interaction with the world outside their front door. However, being a relatively small municipality, it allows for those people who are community-minded to be engaged and have their voices (somewhat) heard. And, thanks to the taxes paid by the wealthy, disengaged people high up on the hill, there are the resources to fulfill some of the demands made by those community-minded people – who, by and large, are not especially wealthy. Both the highway and the MUHC construction mostly affect people living along and below Ste-Catherine, who I doubt are that much wealthier than people in the gentrified parts of St Henri.
      So, in conclusion, don’t think of this as a bunch of wealthy people screwing over everyone else – think of it as what a properly-funded city government can do (or try to, anyways) for it’s citizens.

    • steph 20:14 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      @ Tim: so it’s not the rich people, it’s just their money. ok.

    • Bill Binns 20:29 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      I have certainly rolled my eyes at Westmount’s behavior from time to time but have grown to admire it and NIMBYism in general. They are fussy and stuck up but they have the town they want. If other towns and neighborhoods were as engaged as Westmount, they would have the town they want as well. Some of them do, the Plateau for example. I mean, there are still some parking spaces left but they’re working on it.

      Westmount must be doing something right. Look at their amazingly graffiti free / homeless free park on any nice weekend day from spring to fall. There is no effing way a third of those kids live within the Westmount city limits.

  • Kate 10:15 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    The Plateau’s Champ des possibles is official and may be enlarged with a piece of city land stretching over to the Main.

    Update: Some clarification on new park areas in the Plateau.

    • Chris 21:43 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      More like to Saint Dominique, no?

    • Kate 00:24 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      Makes more sense, but the brief item says “il pourra s’étendre jusqu’au boulevard Saint-Laurent.”

  • Kate 10:05 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    The new CHUM will be charging $24 a day for parking for visitors and patients, the same as the MUHC. Some people are not happy.

    • Douglas 17:50 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      I went to the MUHC at emergency at night because girlfriend had a really nasty abscess, waited 4 hours, got no where with them. Paid 24$ to get nothing.

    • Kevin 20:06 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      I don’t understand that. Did you leave without her getting treatment?

    • Chris 21:50 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      OMFG I actually agree with Barrette on something: « Ils doivent s’autofinancer, car nous avons fait le choix que l’argent que nous versons aux établissements serve pour des soins directs aux patientes et patients ».

      The health budget has no business subsidizing a form of transportation that both pollutes and promotes lethargy.

    • ant6n 23:44 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      In discussion with car crazies, I constantly have to counter their strawman of “not every trip can be made by transit or walking” by saying that nobody is saying there should be no single car trip. Don’t be the one saying that.

      Going to the hospital there may be concerns of mobility and expedience that may actually justify using a car. And some people have to do multiple trips to the hospital.

    • Chris 09:20 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      @ant6n, uh, where did I say that?! Please reread my words. I’m arguing that parking should not be subsidized by the health budget, not that there should be no parking whatsoever.

      Certainly some hospital trips justify using an automobile. It needn’t necessarily be by one’s privately owned car though, it could be a bus trip, taxi ride, uber ride, ambulance ride, etc. Why subsidize only private car parking? Why not subsidize taxi rides too? Hell, even ambulance rides are not full-subsidized!

      Heath budgets are finite of course. I’d rather see their limited dollars going to actual health care, or expand to pharmacare, dental care, etc. But it should not go towards paying for storage of people’s metal boxes!

    • ant6n 10:52 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      You wrote “The health budget has no business subsidizing a form of transportation that both pollutes and promotes lethargy.”

      I’m saying that car trips to the hospital in particular are some that actually make sense. You may have people with reduced mobility for example going for the weekly cancer treatments, in my view it’s kind of cynical to say that not gouging them on parking promotes lethargy.

      I’m not getting your point about subsidization. Ambulances are partially subsidized and actually very expensive to society, as are other forms of transportation. I think it makes more sense for people to drive to the hospital if they can rather than call an ambulance. It also seems strange that you’d need to charge 24$ in order to have parking cover it’s costs, while there’s privately owned (i.e. profitable) parking in downtown for 10-12$.

      Certainly there’s some middle ground here.

    • ant6n 11:19 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      ….Although looking at the actual cost structure, there is already some middle ground.
      Frequent patients could get a 7-entry flexipass for 14.28$ a pop. That’s still pretty expenive though.

      And the first 30 minutes are free. So if you drop off your loved one in an emergency at the hospital and abandon them right away to drive your car back home, I guess you could avoid the high parking fees as well.


    • Bill Binns 11:28 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      Aren’t some meters downtown something like 9 bucks an hour? There are so few parking garages in this city it’s hard to know if $24.00 a day is excessive or not.

    • Chris 18:43 on 2017/05/03 Permalink

      @ant6n, how nice of you to read the article *after* commenting. :) (I jest.) The pricing regime seems pretty close to private/market prices. The headline of course only calls out the top rate. Those complaining that this is “gouging” seem (to me) to be arguing that parking should be free or almost free, i.e. subsidized. It’s a subsidy because it’d be below market price and/or below break even point. They have no idea the costs involved in building parking, they only know that they park at home for free, at the mall for free, and on most city streets for free, and feel entitled to it being free always and everywhere. Next to free, anything seems like gouging.

      I guess it’s mostly the word ‘lethargy’ that you’ve taken issue with. I wasn’t meaning that feeble/sick people are being lethargic if they take a car to the hospital! It was more a comment on the negative health-related aspects of car use in general.

      I maintain that it is morally wrong to take money from a *health care budget* and use it to subsidize/encourage the use of cars, something that pollutes the air and makes more people sick.

      Some people thus will not be able to afford to drive to the hospital. Well, you know, some people can’t even afford to own a car. If we’re going to subsidize parking fees for the middle class, we ought to subsidize taxi rides for the poor, no?

      @bill, no City meter is that much, the most is $3/hour. But of course City rates are not free market either. I’m not up-to-date on private hourly rates of late, but it passes $3/hr for sure.

    • ant6n 10:19 on 2017/05/04 Permalink

      I’m not arguing the parking should be free. You’re saying the hospital parking should not be subsidized, so the rather high rates are supposedly fair. I say that driving is subsidized throughout society, the result is that a lot of poor people actually rely on driving. In my view it’s odd that we subsidize driving everywhere and make it too cheap, but for the one kind of trip where it is actually understandable that people would drive people suddenly yell “no subsidies for driving!”. It’s neither reasonable to overburden those particular individual trips, nor is it a significant factor in trying to discourage driving overall.

  • Kate 01:10 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    The ruins of the Chinatown building that went up in flames in November are being called a public health risk because of asbestos. TVA link, plays video.

  • Kate 01:08 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    Jonathan Mahautière has admitted he strangled his girlfriend three years ago, and now the jury risks an impasse deciding between manslaughter and murder. The young woman had indicated she wanted to end the relationship, so he killed her. She had just completed high school.

    • rue david 02:57 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      The world we live in when confessing to the jury that you’ve been expelled from multiple schools for violent conduct, you’re unfit for society, you have refused to take your meds for 7 years, and that you murdered your girlfriend with your bare hands after you two just had sex, that this is what is expected to get you the lesser punishment. If I were on that jury, I’d be ignoring whatever technical instructions the judge was giving me and throwing the book at him.

    • ant6n 10:08 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Juries decide facts, not punishments

    • Kate 11:20 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      True, but the punishment will vary depending whether it’s determined to be manslaughter or murder.

    • rue david 12:23 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Huh, the jury determining his level of guilt is them finding facts. The way it works is that you have to show actus reus and mens rea, ie. that he committed the act and that he intended to. The first is clear. That’s a finding of fact. The second is where the argument turns: the defense is saying that his mental state aligns by law with manslaughter rather than murder two. this is also a finding of fact.

      My comment was that it may well be that the “facts” support the defense’s theory, and the judge would have given careful instructions to the jury so that they know where the threshold between the two findings is.

      What I’m saying is that of i were a juror, even if fit manslaughter by law, I’d ignore whatever he said vote for murder 2. The reason is that I think a maniac like this should be locked up for as long as possible.

  • Kate 01:01 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    The posh hotel that’s been created from the Mount Stephen Club has opened for business. Metro has some photos of the lavish interior.

    The Journal looks at the hotel restaurant.

    • Max 01:43 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      I happened to be walking past earlier so I crashed the open house party. The interior’s been lovingly restored and a nice smattering of historical artifacts have been added. Worth a visit just for that. But the public rooms are still small by modern standards and the trendoid music clashes badly with the Cuban mahogany. The gigantic shrimps were pretty good though.

  • Kate 00:57 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    The Journal says food trucks are hard to find because none of the apps for locating them has worked very well.

    • Ephraim 01:02 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      And the trucks are notorious for not being reliable enough to post their locations either. You check the schedule, they are supposed to be at X and they aren’t there. So, you determine they aren’t reliable… and don’t ever go out to them again.

    • Ian 07:07 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Oh heavens, where will I get my 8 dollar mini-tacos or 9 dollar finger-length lobster rolls?

    • Bill Binns 18:41 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      @Ian – You know where to get $9.00 lobster rolls (of any size) from a food truck in Montreal? That’s a hell of a bargain. Hell a $9.00 grilled cheese would be a bargain.

      I lost interest in the food trucks last year when a couple of perfectly ordinary chicken wraps and two bottles of water from a truck in the Old Port cost just under thirty bucks. I hadn’t even glanced at the prices before ordering. Fool me once…..

    • Mr.Chinaski 20:25 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      can’t remember how many times I raged because the apps don’t work. They are killing their own industry, it’s widespread pretty much that nobody has a clue where the food trucks are. Shame, it’s their fault.

    • Chris 21:51 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Why would one expect to know where food trucks are? Isn’t the fun running into one?

  • Kate 00:55 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    A settlement has been reached between the city of Westmount and victims of a longtime city employee who molested young boys he was coaching. Emotional scenes were observed in court Monday as victim statements were read out. The predatory hockey coach died in 2012. Some background from Kristian’s blog a few years ago.

  • Kate 00:48 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    iBus readout panels giving real-time arrivals for STM buses have started to appear, with eleven now working. I haven’t seen one in action yet.

    • Zeke 09:52 on 2017/05/02 Permalink


      Obviously you don’t frequent the Cadillac, Square-Victoria-OACI, Assomption, Sherbrooke or De Castelnau metros. Nor the following bus stops: Boul. Lacordaire at the corner of Henri-Bourassa, Jean-Talon at the corner of de Chateaubriand, Beaumont at the corner of L’Acadie, Chemin de la Côte-des-Neiges at the corner of Barclay.

      If I squint I can kind of understand how they chose the metro stations. But can’t figure out why they chose those bus stops.

    • Daniel 11:09 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      I had an amusing conversation with the STM’s Twitter account the other day, as I was fruitlessly waiting for a bus which had clearly been cancelled from the schedule (meaning a 40 minute wait instead of a 20 minute one… pretty unacceptable on a major bus route, even on a Saturday).

      I asked them to confirm if the bus was cancelled or just running late. Their response was to excitedly say they don’t have real-time info for their buses yet, but they’re “working towards it” in iBus. I pointed out that it’s pretty poor of a transit authority to not know where their own buses are, and they should be able to tell me. Silence.

      I wonder when iBus finally arrives, how the STM will handle the influx of complaints as people really can see how delayed their buses are, and that’s assuming this information is even shared with customers via the web or an app.

    • Kate 11:25 on 2017/05/02 Permalink

      Zeke, they may have wanted a handful of random stops as test cases. In my fairly extensive transit use (although curiously not including the locales you mention) buses are usually closest to their schedule at their termini, and furthest off them in the middle somewhere, where traffic or random urban difficulties can slow them down.

      However, I remember seeing or hearing an explanation somewhere that occasionally a driver will not show up, and – especially on weekends, as in Daniel’s example – it can mean that their departure simply falls off the schedule. I suspect that on weekdays the STM would have a couple of spare drivers around to fill in, especially when you have routes that only come by once every half hour or so, but they’re less concerned about weekend travel (which isn’t fair, as plenty of people work on weekends).

  • Kate 00:43 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    May Day demonstrations got a little heated on Monday. There was one arrest and no injuries reported. TVA link has raw video.

  • Kate 00:39 on 2017/05/02 Permalink | Reply  

    A totem pole will stand outside the Museum of Fine Arts this summer. Christopher Curtis explains the back story.

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