Updates from May, 2017 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 10:18 on 2017/05/08 Permalink | Reply  

    In this piece on the prevalence of automobile owners renting parking spaces, the statistic is revealed that 8% of the city’s surface area is devoted to parking.

    • Derek 11:28 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      That’s a fun stat, but is that considered a lot for a city of our size? How does that compare to similar cities? And what is defined as a parking space in the statistic? Does that figure include metered parking spaces, and private driveways and garages? (The article seems to suggest it does but aside from throwing that figure out there, I didn’t see it.)

    • Fab Pine 12:30 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      For me, the most important stat is: “95 % du temps, une voiture est dans un stationnement.” That’s a lot of land for “leaving your toys lying around.”

    • Derek 13:13 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      @Fab Pine – I’m not disputing that 8% of the city’s surface is a considerable amount of land to be used for parking (although again, I’d like to see comparisons with other cities before I can say that’s whack), but that 95% sounds right and good. Most people use their cars to get from point A to point B so it stands to reason that if you’re traveling from the West Island into downtown to work, you’re only using your car a couple of hours a day out of the 24 hours, maybe three hours if you also have to pick up the kids and run some errands. Or maybe you leave the car at the AMT lot and take the train downtown or wherever. It would be far worse if cars on the road were NOT parked 95% of the time because then we’d probably have a major health crisis on our hands with all those cars contributing to pollution all at once.

    • Daisy 15:30 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      95% does not sound “right and good” unless by that you simply mean “accurate.” If people don’t need their cars 95% of the time then perhaps personal car ownership for people who need transportation from A to B only 5% of the time is not a good model to follow. We need to beef up public transit and perhaps car sharing à la Communato instead.

    • Derek 16:28 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      I can’t say whether 95% is accurate since I don’t know the methodology that was used to arrive at that figure (and I’m no expert so I defer to the experts on that one). I’m not suggesting that we shouldn’t be improving public transit (as someone who grew up on the West Island, I can say that owning a car can often make life easier there), but suggesting that we also promote Communauto and other car sharing services is missing the point because I’m sure all of those cars were probably included in the “95% idle” statistic.

      You can (and we do) debate whether most people require cars at all, but if 9 out of 10 cars spend most of their time parked rather than spending 100% of the time running and (presumably) spewing out fumes, then I’d call that a good thing as far as the environment goes.

    • ant6n 16:45 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      “…but suggesting that we also promote Communauto and other car sharing services is missing the point because I’m sure all of those cars were probably included in the “95% idle” statistic.”

      Also, double-huh?! If cars are used only 5% of the time, it’d be much better to have ten tens less cars being used 50% of the time. Cars need space and they need to be constructed – both have large environmental impacts.

    • Jonathan 19:35 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      I would think that the amount of space dedicated to parking is even greater than 8% if we take into consideration streetside parking and residential parking. Also: How would we calculate the several floors of underground parking that exists in most new complexes?
      If the average city has about 25% of the surface area dedicated to streets and most of the streets have parking on either side, then I am thinking it has to be higher than 8%.

    • Tim S. 21:08 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      So here’s a question: when is the 5% of time that these cars are being used?

      One of the reasons I switched from Communauto to car ownership was because getting a Communauto at peak times was almost impossible.
      Car-sharing advocates have to reckon with the fact that if car-shares have to be available around peak-demand (weekends, morning-evening commutes), then many of their cars will still be idle much of the time, and in terms of car-production and space we still won’t be much further ahead than we are now. Maybe a little, sure, but not as much as the utopia that gets promised some places.

    • ant6n 21:29 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      Peak trips is what transit is for.

    • Ephraim 08:02 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      Incidentally on Centris, the cheapest garage for sale is $40K at the moment.

    • Bill Binns 12:16 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      @Tim S – I have the same frustrations with Car2Go. The truth is, that car sharing services do not come close to replacing a private car. You simply cannot “plan” to use these services because you never know if 1. the car will be there and 2. there will be a place to get rid of the car at your destination. Really, nothing at all effectively replaces the convenience, control and privacy of car ownership. This explains why millions of people still own the things.

    • Mathieu 13:38 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      I use Communauto/Car2go and haven’t bought a car just because of this. I also know at least 10 people who did that (or sold a second car) for what it’s worth. And although I sometimes have to take the metro to a car, I’ve never been left stranded. The option is a game changer and your experience doesn’t apply to everyone.

    • thomas 14:41 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      I used Car2go regularly when living in the plateau but having moved to Ville-Marie almost never. Basically, it is useful everywhere but in Ville-Marie borough where availability is serverely restricted by the policies of Coderre.

    • Kevin 15:48 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      If you’re not in your home for hours at a time, should you be renting it out during those hours?

      Should your bathroom be in constant use? Someone can make an app so people have a place to knock, enter, and use your toilet.

      What about shoes? Clothes? I have shirts and pants I don’t wear for weeks at a time.

      Needless to say, I’m not a big fan of this whole “we should use everything we have at all times or we’re being wasteful” mentality.

      Owning things we don’t use constantly is a sign of wealth, and humanity is wealthier now than at any time in our existence.

    • ant6n 17:11 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      Cars are only relatively reliable because of the subsidized abundance of parking. If you removed that, together with the unreliability of traffic it would be much less competitive.

    • Tim S 17:16 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      sure, my experience doesn’t apply to everyone, and for some people car sharing works fine. Here’s my point, though: on a Saturday afternoon, add up all the cars that are at Costco, Ikea and all the big box stores. Add all the families traveling to the suburbs (or vice-versa) to visit grandparents and other family/friends. Add all the people out skiing/cycling whatever they do in the country. Transit, as it is currently or even conceivably set up, can’t meet these needs. So if we replace private car ownership with car sharing, we’d still need enough cars to meet these demands.
      I’m not saying I like big box stores or sprawling suburbs, but car-sharing by itself won’t magically change our cities.

    • ant6n 19:22 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      Going to Costco, IKEA or skiing on the weekend is exactly what car sharing can do best – non peak, non commuting trips not served well by transit. Since the total number of such trips is small compared to other times, car sharing can trivially serve these with a much reduced infrastructure requirement (parking) compared to today.

    • Kevin 21:51 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      Weekends have been peak demand time for every car-sharing group I’ve belonged to for the past 20 years.

      I believe the clientele likely to use car-sharing is one that’s likely to use cars exclusively on weekends and rely on public transit or other means during the week.

    • ant6n 11:08 on 2017/05/10 Permalink

      Yes that’s not a contradiction.

  • Kate 09:24 on 2017/05/08 Permalink | Reply  

    Montreal’s French voted 90% for Emmanuel Macron. TVA link plays video.

    Is this the first world leader named after a diacritical mark?

    (I thought of another definition for expat: someone who plans to go on voting in the old country if possible, whereas an immigrant hopes to change citizenship and vote in the new.)

    • Clément 13:48 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      Is this the first world leader named after a diacritical mark?

      Kate, you are such a geek!

    • mb 16:52 on 2017/05/08 Permalink

      That leaves 10% of French Montrealers voting Le Pen, roughly 6.000 people… Hopefully, most of them will never make it here and return home within a couple of years…

    • Zeke 06:53 on 2017/05/09 Permalink


      I’m not up to date on a complete list of world leaders. But I would venture a guess that Caron, Hoi, Hook and Dot would be possibilities. And once you start getting into other languages, all bets are off.

    • Kate 12:04 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      Zeke, can you point me to a president Caron, a prime minister Hoi or Dot?

      My little joke, fast collapsing under the weight of this discussion, was based not on the notion that there could be, but that there is.

    • ant6n 17:12 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      Wasnt there a Cedilla (who ate babies or something)?
      And Titlo held Yugoslavia together for decades.

    • Ian 17:59 on 2017/05/09 Permalink

      Also worth noting Macron 1 was the N. American title of Sengoku Majin Goshogun, a popular cartoon of the giant Japanese mechwarrior variety in the mid-80s.

    • Exoglot 11:53 on 2017/05/11 Permalink

      mb: another logic suggests that it’s the Macron supporters who should be going back, to enjoy the fruits of their vote. 5 years minimum, no parole.

  • Kate 00:27 on 2017/05/08 Permalink | Reply  

    As noted just below, Denis Coderre has declared a state of emergency over the flooding. The Galipeault Bridge is closed as are some sections of other roads. Some schools around the western end of the island will be closed Monday: CBC has relevant info on its storm centre page; the official city Twitter is giving out information on evacuations, plus temporary shelters and even alternative parking for people who can’t stay in their homes. The STM’s twitter feed has information on affected bus routes.

    1200 soldiers have now been deployed around southern Quebec. The Journal found that emergency services were overwhelmed by Sunday morning. The Gazette has a story about soldiers deployed to Pierrefonds.

    Striking photo accompanies this La Presse piece covering the flooding in Cartierville.

    Even the announcement of a fully electric city bus which was supposed to take place Monday has been postponed because of the floods.

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