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  • Kate 20:52 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    Luc Ferrandez says he’s heard indications that some of the city’s major arteries may be rethought to give them dedicated bus and cycle lanes, and some may become one-way as well. Ferrandez seems to be mostly annoyed that discussions on this are going on in secret, instead of in the open.

    • ant6n 10:43 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      Making arterials one-ways is the kind of 50s and 60s planning that try to turn urban street grids into highways. Turning Papineau into a one-way up to the A40 will be that, an urban highway. Right now it’s one-way South of Rachel, and it already feels like one.

    • Kate 11:06 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      Yes, you’re right about that. It’s a feeder highway for the bridge from Rachel southwards.

    • Mathieu 11:30 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      On another hand, St-Laurent or St-Hubert don’t particularly feel like a highway (at least not in the way de Lorimier does right now). I think good design might make it less worse than we imagine it.

    • ant6n 12:03 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      St-Laurent and St-Urbain used to be two-way streets, turned into one-ways to speed up individual car traffic. St-Laurent is not that bad because it’s slow and pretty congested, but St-Urbain feels highway-like at stretches. Both would be more urban, and pedestrian and bicycle friendly if they were not one-way streets.

      I doubt “design” is gonna save Papineau. That street is already pretty hostile, it’s only gonna get worse. Kind of annoying, since the thing they should really do is have bus lanes in both directions along all of Papineau. The 45 is a really strong transit corridor that has good ridership despite the giant detour near the Metro station, and the Eastern Plateau (and areas North) could use some faster bus service.

    • Faiz Imam 13:26 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      One way streets are at their worst when they are camouflaged highways, with wide lanes and monopolized for cars.

      If the one way lanes are a by product of better bike lanes and dedicated bus lanes(especially with narrower lanes), then they should be quite an improvement overall. Especially if they are also being pedestrian focused with narrow necked intersections.

      The fine details of design really matter. The fact that this is all behind closed doors really sucks.

      *puts on rose colored glasses*

      Maybe it’s secret so that they can make really pro transit/ped/cyclist adjustments without being harassed by drivers?

      Some of the scant details coming out seem to lean that way (a bit), at least.

      Wait and see. The city has been all over the place on this stuff in the past.

    • ant6n 13:47 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      You put on a second pair of rose colored glasses?

      I think it’s the other way round: create urban highways, but put a cycle lane (shared with buses) so that you can go to the active transport activits and say “what are you complaining about, we’re putting bike lanes!”. Just like when they build the REM (also planned behind closed doors) they yell at the transit activists: “Why are you whining, we’re building a new metro line!”

    • Blork 13:49 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      De Lormier/Papineau are different from St-Laurent/St-Urbain for two main reasons:

      1] De Lormier/Papineau are three and four lanes for much of their lenghts, while St-Laurent/St-Urbain are only two lanes (plus parking lanes) for most of their lengths.

      2] De Lormier/Papineau directly feed to and from the Jacques Cartier bridge–a major commuter corridor, whereas St-Laurent/St-Urbain diffuse into Old Montreal at their bottom ends.

      For these reasons, the De Lormier/Papineau configuration will create an urban highway, where the St-Laurent/St-Urbain did not.

    • carswell 15:05 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      Why does the city put so many dedicated bike paths on busy streets? Heavy traffic means higher pollution (which cyclists and other deep breathers should avoid) and greater numbers of vehicles turning, speeding and breaking laws, all of which increase the possibility of accidents. Quality of life issues are also involved for cyclists: high noise levels (eliminating one of the great pleasures of biking, i.e. the quietness of it), getting splashed more on rainy/slushy days, etc.

      I appreciate that busy streets are the only option on some routes (like crossing downtown latitudinally) but that’s not the case for north-south biking through the east end. Rue de Bordeaux, for example, which is located between Papineau and De Lorimier, runs from Ontario all the way to the Met, the only interruption being the CPR tracks. It could, at relatively little expense, be turned into a bike corridor with vehicular traffic blocked in the middle of each block (allowing locals to park but eliminating through vehicular traffic).

      The city’s rumoured plans for major arteries are further proof that the powers that be are first and foremost (and maybe exclusively) car drivers. Not transit users. Not cyclists or skateborders. And definitely not people who care about the quality of life of those of us who live on the streets they turn into urban highways.

    • Mathieu 15:13 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      Cyclists also need to go buy things on commercial streets or live there and so putting bike paths there is logical. Pollution isn’t a relevant concern here in my opinion; it affects pedestrians just as much and the only way to reduce it is by removing cars, which is what bike lanes on big streets does.

    • ant6n 15:18 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      I like that idea. One could build ped/bike a tunnel under the the CP tracks. It only has to be 2.5m high instead of 4+m. Maybe the city purchase the right to go through the garage of this building:

    • Blork 15:57 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      @Mathieu, putting bicycle paths on non-main streets doesn’t prevent cyclists from going over to main streets to do their shopping or whatever. The question is whether or not main streets are the best places for bicycle corridors (i.e., for people passing through).

      And as much as many people want it, cars are not going away. Reducing car corridors by adding bicycle lanes just shifts the cars over to other streets.

    • mare 18:07 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      Bycicle lanes on side streets are seen as ‘detours’ by many cyclists who for instance don’t take Clark but stay on St. Laurent waiting to be doored or hit at intersections. Drivers are also really annoyed by cyclists on thoroughfares because they take up a lane and cause moving bottlenecks. At many blocks in a row because bikes travel about the same speed when the cyclists pass the waiting cars at red lights and don’t wait for the light to turn green.
      And sometimes bike baths are really detours like the Berri/ Brebeuf/Boyer axis that has a lot of east-west sections too, and long waiting times for lights.

      Re highways: Both De Lorimier and Papineau have bottle necks tough, that cause dangerous and annoying situations for both cyclist and cars. There’s a block in the south direction on Papineau where there’s only one lane (between Rosemont and Des Carrières) and on De Lorimier North just before Rachel, where there’s a dedicated turn lane onto Rachel and lots of asshole drivers that overtake the line and merge to the right at the last moment. This causes angry drivers and angry drivers dislike (or don’t see) bikes even more than happy drivers.

    • dewolf 23:20 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      Cities like Amsterdam always put cycle tracks on major streets because that’s where cyclists are most likely to be found. People usually want to take the most direct route, even if it means riding along a busy, congested street rather than a quiet side street.

      I’m perplexed at this idea of installing reserved lanes for bikes, buses and taxis on St-Urbain and other major streets. That’s what Paris does and it really does not work well – for obvious reasons. It’s a very unpleasant experience to be riding peacefully along only to have an aggressive taxi driver swing around you, or worse, a city bus breathing down your neck.

      I’m pretty sure Paris is moving away from that model, anyway. The last time I was there, a lot of exclusive cycle tracks had been installed and there seemed to be fewer reserved bus/bike/taxi lanes.

  • Kate 20:48 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    Metro lists the four lookouts from Mount Royal.

    • Clément 20:18 on 2016/10/26 Permalink

      Unfortunately, the article doesn’t inform us of the current access limitations. I was in town yesterday and decided to go for a run from my downtown hotel to the Kondiaronk lookout only to find out that the escarpment staircase was closed for major renovations. The least the article could have done is note this fact!

  • Kate 20:44 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    Michele Torre, ordered deported in September based on an old conviction and his lapse in failing to establish Canadian citizenship, has been given a two-year reprieve.

  • Kate 17:24 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    The Montreal heart institute wants to talk to all its open-heart surgery patients since 2012 to make sure they didn’t pick up a rare, slow-acting infection from a piece of equipment they were using.

  • Kate 16:44 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    Radio-Canada counts four Egyptian mummies in Montreal museums, three being at the Redpath. An audio file about how these mummies arrived there.

    • Taylor 16:54 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      But five mummies in total if we count the remains of Marguerite Bourgeoys; unless the embalmed aren’t mummies.

      How long before protests break out over cultural appropriation of the mummies by the way?

    • Kate 16:57 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Egypt had a lot of mummies. Some were even used as fertilizer in the 19th century, and they were used as a paint pigment too. I don’t think we have any “name” mummies Egypt would want back.

      We would likely have other holy preserved people besides Marguerite B., I think, here and there, but they didn’t go through the process of mummification that I know of.

    • js 07:57 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      Do the 3 at the Redpath include the mummifies cats they had last time I was there? Or only the humans?

    • Kate 09:48 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      This story mentions only the humans: “sans compter de nombreux animaux momifiés.”

  • Kate 14:49 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    So I hear on the news that the Walloons have voted to stop CETA. This is interesting, because I’m not clear why Europeans get to vote on this trade agreement – even sub-national units like Wallonie – but we do not.

    • ant6n 15:00 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Most in Europe didn’t get to vote on it (for example the Germans, where the government has pushed for many weird things that people simply do not want). And as I understand it the Walloons didn’t have a referendum either, it was a regional parliament that had to give permission and they didn’t.

      If Quebec (for example) had to give permission to CETA, the current neo-liberal government would probably say yes.

    • Kate 16:45 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Thanks, ant6n.

    • Raymond Lutz 08:23 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      Les politiciens wallons sont mes héros: enfin des élus qui ont comme priorité le bien et la santé des ses citoyens, comme priorité la nécessité de protéger la souveraineté des états devant les corporations. L’ICS (Investment Court System) est inacceptable, point.

      Également, la Cour constitutionnelle allemande a déclaré cette semaine: «Oui, l’Allemagne peut signer, mais pas ce mécanisme d’arbitrage et quoi qu’il arrive, il ne pourra pas entrer en vigueur, même pas de manière provisoire»

    • Kate 09:50 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      Merci, Raymond Lutz.

    • Michael J 11:07 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      It depends on the laws in each country surrounding trade agreements. For Europe all members countries need to agree to the trade agreement but how each goes about it will vary. In Belgium, Wallonia gets a veto on an agreements that Belgium signs. Meanwhile in Canada I believe all that’s needed is cabinet approval. The PM could put it to a vote but he doesn’t have to.

    • Raymond Lutz 21:31 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      La pression sur le parlement wallon sera énorme… C”est pourquoi des citoyens ont mis sur pied cette pétition pour supporter Paul Magnette:

      Signez et faites circuler!

    • Robert J 12:22 on 2016/10/26 Permalink

      I just want cheaper French cheese and wine! Too much to ask?

  • Kate 14:32 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    After reports said that its IT department was very poor, the city is doing a housecleaning of the department and proposing to hire 115 new programmers. Journal notes it did something like this in 2009 as well, but then one of the managers was jailed for fraud…

    Meanwhile, the Journal found out that Quebec has paid twice for 150,000 email boxes – once to IBM and once to Microsoft. Surely they can get a refund if they bought these services in error? You’d think so, but no. And this was only one of the many expensive software projects bollixed up by Quebec within the last year.

  • Kate 14:25 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    Fair bit of waiting around Monday morning at the Palais de justice – long line for security (shoes stay on, but everything else is airport style), just dodged the start of a demonstration on the front steps, but by a little after noon I was processed and not retained for the jury. They do not tell you why.

    Partly disappointed, partly relieved. I’d’ve gladly done it, but as things stand, it’s more convenient not to.

    • David S. 18:12 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      I was at the airport recently and was told to keep my shoes. Not sure if they’ve given up on that or if it’s just if we go to the US?

    • Viviane 19:01 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      David S, “Footwear must be removed and placed in the bins if travelling to the US only. This is not a security requirement on domestic flights within Canada.”

      Source: Canadian Air Transport Security Authority

    • Ian 09:08 on 2016/10/25 Permalink

      It also just depends. I got waved through to a separate line flying to the US a few weeks ago where I wasn’t required to take off my shoes. I suspect it has something to do with how much of a rush they are in. I was in the UK last month and they still hve much higher airport security but it is consistent, well labelled while you know what to get ready in line, and is extremely efficient so is much faster than any other TSA checkpoint I’ve seen.

  • Kate 07:15 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    Linda Gyulai – she’s been busy – tells about the 60th anniversary of the Hungarian uprising and the arrival in Canada of several refugees, including Gabor Szilasi.

    • rue david 12:32 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      You can really see the decline in the Hungarian numbers in Montreal by how few restaurants there are now compared with even 10 years ago.

    • Bill Binns 13:34 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      @rue david – If you know of any good Hungarian restaurants in town, I’d be interested to hear about them. I love me some Chicken Paprikash.

    • rue david 14:38 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      yeah, that’s sort of the point. once there were many, now? since cafe rococo closed a couple months ago, i don’t think any of older ones remain. the only other one is newer, on duluth, in nantha’s old space.

    • rue david 14:40 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

  • Kate 07:13 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    A Journal writer talked briefly to Bernie Ecclestone in the U.S., collecting a remark that Ecclestone doesn’t know if Montreal wants to keep its Grand Prix because the mayor didn’t go to the American Grand Prix to schmooze him up.

    • Uatu 08:38 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Watta douche.

    • Bert 09:42 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      When you are familiar with B.E. you learn to read very carefully. He is often very bluntly honest in his answers. Oh, and any publicity is good publicity… Here are some observations:

      Why would Coderre need to go to Austin? The contract for the Canadian G.P. is already signed. B.E. doesn’t even go to all G.P.s any more. B.E. doesn’t know if the promoter wants to keep the G.P…. past the current contract.

      B.E. is currently involved in a power struggle with new F1 owners Liberty Media, and it is important for him to be seen as still having his fingers on the puppet strings.

      I just stumbled on an hour long rambling interview with B.E. on a diverse set of topics, including Brexit, Trump and racing. Any Bernie interview is great! On the takeover of Liberty Media

    • Robert J 12:34 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Liberty is an American company. They want to expand F1’s viewership in the United States, so I expect they will be more interested in keeping the Montreal race. While the American (and Mexican) race has been bounced around and cancelled for decades, Montreal is the only consistent classic on the continent.

      On the other hand, I was reading the other day that the single greatest source of income for F1 Management is the event fee paid by cities/countries to hold the races. This is higher than their TV rights. Some of the teams have mentioned that they feel the new American company will be better at generating viewing revenues, especially with Internet viewing. A quick look at ESPN and the various major American sports leagues’ media coverage confirms that they are the world leaders in this field.

      So, it’s quite possible that an emphasis on media revenue, rather than event fees, and NA audiences will benefit Montreal.

  • Kate 07:05 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    Le Devoir’s Florence Sara G. Ferraris writes about reconsidering the city layout for the more vulnerable pedestrians – children and the aged.

    • Ephraim 08:15 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      The other stakeholder are the handicapped, who like the aged would take a long time to recover.

    • Jack 08:29 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      One of the most interesting Projects that the city inaugurated to protect its pedestrians was Place de Castelneau. I’ve hears rumors that it is now being walked back because of the frankly incessant campaign of two store owners on the street. Who as always claim that if the automobile is anyway encumbered their business suffers. I and other neighbors will be keeping an eye on this but it seems that Anie Samson sees this as a potential wedge issue in the upcoming election. You know cars versus people, cars win.

    • ant6n 14:27 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      How do these people campaign so effectively? Why are pedestrian, cycling and transit advocates apparently so much less successful?

    • Jack 15:05 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Good question, if the project does get iced or altered significantly I am hoping that we can mobilize a large group of citizens to push back. I think the Place during the summer was alot of fun and people will be justifiably upset if its pushed back.
      I also want to ask a question of this forum, is it justifiable to high lite the implication of these two businesses in deciding how our neighborhood is configured.

    • Kate 15:59 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Jack, that’s a good question. Are the owners of these businesses on record somewhere as taking this position, e.g. the minutes of a borough council or other meeting?

    • SMD 20:27 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Yes, they both spoke at last month’s VSMPE borough council meeting.

    • Jack 21:16 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      They also were quoted in the above link. I often wonder if they are allowed to dictate how we live based on their unproven commercial interests, are we allowed to say this cuts both ways. If you are going to make it tougher for pedestrians and cyclist in a 100 meter stretch with two daycares and an elementary school. Can we highlight this fact to your potential customers?

  • Kate 06:59 on 2016/10/24 Permalink | Reply  

    Linda Gyulai tells us the long, slow, expensive epic of renovating a water filtration plant in Pierrefonds. A second piece published a day later goes into more detail about the contracts and the questions they raise.

  • Kate 22:32 on 2016/10/23 Permalink | Reply  

    Now that this year’s cruise season is ending, plans are afoot to make the currently temporary cruise terminal permanent for next year, with the expectation of a bump in cruise visitors of 25%.

    • Ephraim 08:16 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      How? Most of the ships can’t make it to Montreal, under the electric cables and under the bridge at Trois Rivieres.

    • Blork 10:13 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Obviously some of them can, because there have been a lot of cruise ships in port over the past month or so. Presumably they’re pitching for the mid-sized and smaller ships.

    • Bill Binns 11:57 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      I read somewhere (possibly here) that the problems keeping the big ships from Montreal are not as insurmountable as they may seem. Apparently, the bridge in Trois Rivieres is not the problem, just the power lines.

      I’m not sure it’s worth spending serious money to get the big ships here though. The bigger the ship the poorer it’s passengers.

    • Ephraim 12:08 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Blork, the smaller ships make it here, the larger ships all stop at Quebec City. Royal Caribbean, Carnival, Princess and NCL have ships that are small enough to make it here anymore. Holland America has one ship that comes here spring and fall.

    • Patrick 12:32 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      @Ephraim, Do you mean the big lines do *not* have ships…anymore?

    • Ephraim 13:43 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      @Patrick – No, they don’t have small ships anymore. Holland America’s Maasdam comes to Montreal, it is 55K GT.

      The smallest ships Carnival has are 70K GT. Princess has the Pacific Princess, which is the only ship that can make it at 30K GT, the next ships are 77K GT. Royal Caribbean has one ship that could make it, Empress of the Seas at 48K GT. Aida does come here, the ship is 69K GT. Norwegian’s smallest ship is 75K GT. Basically the oldest ships in the fleets and there aren’t many… they are more expensive to run per person. And they usually have only 1 or 2 of them, so they can’t just move them to the St. Lawrence if there isn’t a call for it.

      The newer ships are way over 100K GT and Royal has ships over the 200K GT.

    • Ephraim 14:13 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      @Patrick – Sorry, yeah, typo. They don’t have small ships anymore. Cheaper to run large ships. Like resorts, cheaper to run a large resort than a small resort.

  • Kate 22:28 on 2016/10/23 Permalink | Reply  

    The man behind Formula E here is also behind the return of major league baseball, and he’s a pal of the mayor’s.

    • Uatu 08:45 on 2016/10/24 Permalink

      Conflicted by this… Looks like a conflict of interest, but would love it if formula e becomes a huge hit and relieves the city from Eeech…elstone. :P

  • Kate 22:26 on 2016/10/23 Permalink | Reply  

    The Uber pilot project is now in effect.

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