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  • Kate 10:24 on 2014/10/28 Permalink | Reply  

    Westmount was successful in banishing the construction of the MUHC beyond its borders, but it hasn’t been able to block all noise from the facility. Even before the hospital has opened, residents living closest to the new buildings are finding the ventilation noises excessive.

     
    • dwgs 13:43 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      Boo. Freakin. Hoo.

    • yossarian 15:44 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      westmounters looking for some free money, er, compensation. Because leching off the rest of the city is a longstanding westmount tradition.

    • Bill Binns 22:30 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      Whoa, where’s all that sympathy we saw here for the poor disenfranchised folk living next to the train tracks or for the guy who was terrified of airplanes yet rented an apartment next to the airport? At least the people in Westmount aren’t bitching about something that was there when they moved in.

    • John B 00:18 on 2014/10/29 Permalink

      I was actually thinking the other day about how it’s impossible to get away from ventilation noise in the city. Even though they’re usually on the roofs of buildings they’re quite loud and are everywhere.

      @Bill: I think the lack of sympathy stems from Westmount, (or it’s government), being kind of dicks about the whole hospital thing. My guess is a large part of the traffic problems that NDG has endured for the last few years exist, at least partly, because Westmount won’t let anyone access the construction site from their side of it, despite having a connection to a major artery on Glen.

      The flip side of that is that the Westmount government is really great at sticking up for its citizens, (or at least seems to from my view). It may suck to be a non-Westmounter dealing with Westmount, but if you are a Westmounter, things seem to improve.

      Back to the noise, I can imagine that if there’s a big ventilation plant or something at the Westmount end of the hospital it might be quite loud. Yes, those people moved in beside train tracks, but they’re commuter trains that stop at night. Now they have constant mechanical noise 24/7, and don’t even get to look at trains in exchange for it.

    • Bill Binns 08:44 on 2014/10/29 Permalink

      There is no reason why NDG or any other town or neighborhood could not do what Westmount does. Yes, they come off as fussy pricks sometimes but they have the city they want.

    • Philip 17:13 on 2014/10/29 Permalink

      Or they’re just a bunch of pricks who are pricks because they’re pricks. I have no bias otherwise, but it’s the same municipal pricks who refused to allow access on Glen Road. No reason. No justification. Just “you knew about it five years ago, it’s too late now.” A lousy couple of square meters of “theirs” and they had no interest in ceding it because of their pride or whatever else the reason might be.

      Pricks. That’s all.

    • jeather 19:41 on 2014/10/29 Permalink

      I wonder if, had Westmount worked with the city in making the hospital and in determining access, this would have been looked into.

  • Kate 09:47 on 2014/10/28 Permalink | Reply  

    The report on how to develop Ste-Catherine Street was presented to city council yesterday, but the bigger story is that the city inspector general says there were problems with the contract tender last spring because the way it was defined left only one firm capable of bidding.

    As a footnote to the council meeting, Alex Norris was chucked out of Monday night’s session because he was not wearing a suit and tie. Norris, who has been cautioned before for not appearing at council in the proper male attire, is recovering from an injury and pleaded that he was wearing a t-shirt because he’d just had a painful treatment for his broken arm and couldn’t get into the full kit. But the speaker was inflexible. The rule about attire is a tradition but is not written down anywhere.

     
    • Bill Binns 22:32 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      He should have said god told him to wear a t-shirt to his government job. Works every time.

    • ant6n 23:29 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      It’s inappropriate to remove an elected official from a parliament session based on an unwritten rule like that.

    • Kate 10:01 on 2014/10/29 Permalink

      I agree with you, ant6n. Especially since there’s no parallel rule for women, although I suspect they too would be told off if they showed up in anything but business attire.

  • Kate 09:36 on 2014/10/28 Permalink | Reply  

    The final witness for the Crown testified Monday at the Magnotta trial. More recorded testimony will be played this week, then the defense is expected to begin on Friday. Same CP report in French. We’ve definitely seen a dropoff in media interest in the trial since last week’s crises – maybe the defense will revive its spirits.

     
  • Kate 22:29 on 2014/10/27 Permalink | Reply  

    Here’s an interesting sheaf of stories: the Liberals are intent on privatizing health and education services, says finance minister Carlos Leitão. This comes at the same time as a new study by IRIS says that the government could save billions by buying back the PPP contracts from the MUHC and CHUM hospital projects. The government talks about saving money, but it seems more intent on moving public funds into private hands than making true economies.

    Currently the Royal Vic has 26 hemodialysis stations. The new MUHC hospital will have six. Other aspects of the MUHC’s reorganization have people unsettled. Will the private side be taking up the slack? And in that case what will happen to the many people without private insurance?

     
    • Beeg 07:46 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      While IRIS may be on to something, the article makes clear that their analysis lacks some essential evidence – i.e., since they don’t know how much the government will be paying the private businesses to run the megahospital, it assumes costs based on a British model. This hardly presents a compelling argument that “government can do it cheaper.” Not that they are wrong in principle, only that they appear to be standing on little evidence. Granted, it’s not IRIS’s fault it can’t get the data it needs to make its point, but that’s beside the point.

    • Clément 08:31 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      It’s almost funny how Leitão wants to appear balanced:
      “…il a précisé que le secteur privé et les groupes communautaires à but non lucratif peuvent devenir des solutions de rechange…”

      Yeah, I’m sure the PLQ plans to outsource services to non-profit organisations. If they have a choice between outsourcing to a non-profit or to the private sector, they’ll look at who made campaign donations. Let’s be realistic. And it won’t be cheaper.

  • Kate 21:48 on 2014/10/27 Permalink | Reply  

    I need to get something fixed in another borough.

    I do some work in a studio near the corner of St-Hubert and Jean-Talon. On the south side of that intersection, both sidewalk corners are hazardous. There are old-fashioned stone curbs, but on the pedestrian side are some segments with small old cobbles which have sunk below the level of the curbs, which stick up now at the edge of the sidewalk. You can see a bit on this Streetview although it doesn’t make it apparent how treacherous the corner can be.

    I was crossing there today when I saw a young woman in front of me, carrying a small baby, trip over the curb and go sprawling into the street. People reached down to help her up, and the first thing she said was that the baby was OK: instinct had kicked in and she had protected it as she fell. Luckily for her, no vehicle was passing right at that moment, and she seemed to be shaken but all right.

    I described this to my friend at the studio and we discovered we’d both tripped there at various times and had, without thinking much about it, made mental notes to be careful at that corner, especially in winter. And both of us are able-bodied and reasonably nimble. If we’ve both learned to be cautious at this spot, that means these curbs are a legitimate hazard, especially for the many older people in the area – and women carrying babies.

    (The cobbles have also sunk below the level of the inset concrete tree planters near that corner, which you can see on Streetview, and those can also trip up any pedestrian who blithely assumes the sidewalk to be level and isn’t looking at their feet.)

    I need to explain this directly to the folks who run Rosemont-La-Petite-Patrie. Anybody got a contact for me?

     
    • Chris 21:52 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      Call 311 and get a dossier number. Then give that number to any élu you end up speaking with.

    • mare 22:07 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      Francois Croteau is active and listening on Twitter. Just send him a link to this post since 140 chars won’t be enough.

      @francoiscroteau

    • Kate 22:36 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      I’ve done that, mare. Thanks for the tip!

  • Kate 21:29 on 2014/10/27 Permalink | Reply  

    Daphnée Hacker-B., who seems to have moved from Metro to Le Devoir, writes about slower walkers in town who will be holding a demo this week to protest the speed of traffic light changes. Public safety boffin Patrick Morency is quoted as saying the city’s always too keen on keeping motor traffic moving, often at the expense of pedestrian safety.

     
  • Kate 10:58 on 2014/10/27 Permalink | Reply  

    Denis Coderre is supposed to announce plans for the 375th anniversary of the city Monday morning, while Philippe Couillard is in China. Second item queries what this “means” politically.

     
    • Matt G 14:17 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      I find it equal parts petty and funny. Though I hate it when Quebec feels the need to have a hand in what happens in the city.

  • Kate 10:56 on 2014/10/27 Permalink | Reply  

    As things stand, you can be fined for skateboarding on roads or sidewalks. Some people want to change this, saying we need to allow kids to be more active, and regard it as a legitimate mode of transport, not just a sport to be practiced in closed settings.

     
  • Kate 10:53 on 2014/10/27 Permalink | Reply  

    Richard Bergeron has stepped down from heading Projet Montréal, and Luc Ferrandez is now interim chief.

     
    • Charles 11:14 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      I really like what Ferrandez did in the Plateau (well 90% of it). But he got so much negative coverage that people outside the Plateau believe that it’s going to be difficult for him to be even heard. Plus he’s really not diplomatic.

    • Lucas 13:16 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      Charles, I think my own perception of him falls into what you have described. In particular, I am unimpressed by what I perceive as a streak of parochial nationalism (especially in relation to recognizing Mordecai Richler). This may or may not be the case but it is certainly the impression I have drawn in relation to Mr. Ferrandez.

    • Ian 13:42 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      He’s certainly more divisive than others in the party, but I imagine the reins were handed over to him because behind Bergeron he’s the most high-profile.

    • Noah 15:55 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      And you get a $5,000 fire hydrant water fountain, and you get a $5,000 fire hydrant water fountain, and YOU get a $5,000 fire hydrant water fountain…

    • Ant6n 07:19 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      Isn’t ‘interim’ chief usually not the permanent chief once they are found

    • Mathieu 08:43 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      Exactly. He was probably selected since he has no intention to become the chief.

  • Kate 10:52 on 2014/10/27 Permalink | Reply  

    A Toronto Star columnist says the recent baseball talk about moving the Tampa team to Montreal may just be leverage the owner is trying to use on the team’s home city. Nonetheless, that two-sentence rumour in the New York Daily News on the weekend has blossomed into a lot of talk about baseball here.

    My main concern is that other things will be neglected if Denis Coderre spends too much time and money on a wild goose chase to get major league baseball back in Montreal.

     
    • Josh 12:08 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      For what it’s worth the columnist, Richard Griffin, worked for many years in the Expos organization.

  • Kate 21:46 on 2014/10/26 Permalink | Reply  

    There may be high security at the Monday council session at city hall.

     
  • Kate 21:44 on 2014/10/26 Permalink | Reply  

    Protesters in a Sunday afternoon demonstration at Dorchester Square want Canada to withdraw its forces from the coalition fighting in Iraq.

     
  • Kate 21:32 on 2014/10/26 Permalink | Reply  

    Some advance polls for the school board elections had surprisingly long waiting lines Sunday.

     
    • Noah 21:55 on 2014/10/26 Permalink

      High turnout, bad organization, or both?

    • H. John 09:29 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      I’ve never experienced anything quite so bizarre. I went to St. Monica’s. When I arrived at 16h15 there were about a dozen people in the hallway, and another 20 in line in the gym in front of me.

      There were two desks – one for sectors 6 & 7, and another for 7 & 8.

      There was never a line for 6 & 7. People walked in, voted, and left. Possible 5 in total while I was there.

      The people in line were for 7 & 8. Again only 30 people ahead of me and it took an hour.

      The staff weren’t going slowly. They were required to check the lists, your ID, and to write down the full address of each voter, as well as deal with the odd person they couldn’t find on their lists.

    • Jack 12:12 on 2014/10/27 Permalink

      Knowing the Mancini team and specifically Ruth Rosenfield I would be surprised at nothing. At the all candidates meeting the former union president had a rough time answering how her ethics allowed her to claim $40,000.00 in overtime one year during her stint as Union President. This on top of her already very substantial salary. There are so many stories of nepotism and just general bad faith in the anciene regime that voter suppression is almost a certainty.
      http://montrealteachers4change.org/

    • Jack 05:55 on 2014/10/28 Permalink

      Although this is a new twist. A Global reporter received a phone call from a Mancini incumbent on his private cell phone number, the one he gave to his child’s school for emergencies. How did the Mancini incumbent got access to the schools emergency contact numbers, good question.
      http://globalnews.ca/news/1638355/emsb-denies-breach-of-voter-privacy-in-school-board-election/

  • Kate 21:30 on 2014/10/26 Permalink | Reply  

    Metro’s Monday history capsule looks at Phillips Square and the 1891 opening of Morgan’s department store, now The Bay.

     
  • Kate 21:27 on 2014/10/26 Permalink | Reply  

    There’s now a Place du Village in Vieux Pointe-aux-Trembles and the borough now has its first piece of public art, which frankly looks like a couple of stacks of old toys. Oh well.

     
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