Updates from September, 2019 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 14:45 on 2019-09-22 Permalink | Reply  

    Radio-Canada has a rather fancy web feature asking whether the new Champlain bridge can last the promised 125 years. It’s an inquiry into its engineering design with some nice visuals.

    • Clément 15:55 on 2019-09-22 Permalink

      Découverte on SRC (French CBC) tonight at 18:30 has a one-hour special on the construction of the bridge. You can also watch it later on tou.tv.

    • Blork 21:50 on 2019-09-22 Permalink

      Here’s a question: why are the street lights still on for the old bridge? Especially since they’ve already taken down about a 50 metre section on the Brossard side, so you couldn’t cross that bridge now even if you tried. (Spotted last night; lights on the new bridge are white; lights on the old bridge are yellow and still on.)

  • Kate 10:58 on 2019-09-22 Permalink | Reply  

    The start of the Montreal Marathon was delayed nearly an hour because of some holdup in securing the route – La Presse says not enough people showed up to do the work, so police had to be called to sort it out. The organizer admits the delay was his fault.

    Streets were expected to reopen around 3 p.m. but this too may be somewhat delayed by the late start.

    At 11 a.m. the marathon winners have already been declared, with two Kenyan runners taking the race at 2:15 and 2:40 (♂ and ♀).

    Update: A participant in the demi-marathon collapsed and was given CPR then brought to hospital. This report suggests it was a person in their twenties.

    Further update: the young man who collapsed has died. I suspect from the tone of some things I’m reading that the disarray of the marathon this year will be blamed for not having first aid people at hand immediately.

    • Brett 15:13 on 2019-09-22 Permalink

      We say half marathon ☻

    • Spi 19:06 on 2019-09-22 Permalink

      They failed to recruit enough volunteers to man the intersections and gates along the course. It’s much graver than people not showing up to do the work.

    • Kate 13:05 on 2019-09-23 Permalink

      Maybe that suggests they need more paid staff?

    • CR 19:03 on 2019-09-23 Permalink

      I’ve never understood why people volunteer at for-profit events unless they’re going to get free admission or something. I can understand working a day at a music festival to get a free ticket for the next day but what are you getting out of volunteering at a marathon where you won’t be competing and watching it is free?

    • Mr.Chinaski 09:50 on 2019-09-24 Permalink

      Sometimes you volunteer because of the law, community-work hours and small sentences.

    • Kate 10:09 on 2019-09-24 Permalink

      But the Montreal marathon is part of a profit-making venture, Mr. Chinaski. Can that be considered community work?

    • Dan 10:49 on 2019-09-24 Permalink

      Volunteers at running events tend to be of a different sort, often athletes themselves who’ve participated in the event in the past and know the value of helpful, cheering folk along the route. Having done it myself it’s usually quite a rewarding experience.

  • Kate 10:54 on 2019-09-22 Permalink | Reply  

    What an absolutely glorious autumn Sunday. I have some history pieces for leisure reading.

    Radio-Canada has a piece with text and video clips about the life and death of the Montreal tramway. It’s a theme that’s often pondered because it’s hard to believe we wilfully destroyed such a comprehensive transit system – obviously it would’ve had to be updated and upgraded over the years, but it was already in existence and functioned well for decades. (I happened on the construction site for the Pie-IX bus corridor recently and it’s a serious dig running for many blocks. We just had a new bus corridor ordained on Papineau in about ten minutes for the 445 route, so what is that thing? I suspect strongly it will be turned into a tramway before we’re done with it, because there’s no other explanation that makes sense. Why would you have to dig to make a bus lane?)

    CBC has text and an audio excerpt about a man who made his home in Montreal after surviving the Holocaust. It’s a clip from a longer audio piece designed as a guide to the postwar Jewish history of the Plateau and Mile End, on a site conceived to tell the stories of a number of refugees.

    The Centre d’histoire piece is about the Hélène-de-Champlain restaurant. The building dates from 1936, part of Camillien Houde’s park construction make-work campaign, and used at first as a sports chalet. It was turned into a restaurant in 1955, had its moment in the sun during Expo 67 and basically coasted on that reputation for years afterward. It’s been closed for ten years now.

    The Gazette’s ongoing archive series includes Michael Jackson’s 1984 tour, a huge show at the Olympic Stadium that September 16.

    • DeWolf 11:23 on 2019-09-22 Permalink

      The Pie-IX SRB involves such a big dig because they’re taking the opportunity to completely redo the underground infrastructure (same as St-Hubert, Ste-Catherine, etc.). That’a also why it isn’t slated to open until 2022, which is apparently when we will have an entire new light metro system up and running.

    • Kate 11:58 on 2019-09-22 Permalink

      Maybe you’re right. But it would be a sensible route for a tram, and has been proposed in the past – let’s say, it could happen.

    • TC 22:12 on 2019-09-22 Permalink

      Streetcars systems were replaced by buses all over North American, and in many European cities. Buses have some major advantages: they are maneuverable, if one breaks down it doesn’t impede the rest of the line, or other vehicles on the route. Passengers do not have to get on and off in the middle of the roadway. You can dispatch buses quickly, and they can skip stops easily. No masses of ugly overhead wires to maintain. I suspect that when buses were substituted, no one expected that cars would overwhelm streets the way they have. Gas engines vs. electric was not a factor in the decisions.

    • Ant6n 11:05 on 2019-09-23 Permalink

      That sounds like the advantages of new buses over of streetcars back in the fifties. Or perhaps it’s a view colored by Toronto’s 50s style system (‘ugly overheat wires’, ‘get on and off in the middle of roadway’).
      Not at all relevant for a potential tram on pie9.

    • Blork 13:40 on 2019-09-23 Permalink

      Buses do have the advantage of being more maneuverable and can go off-route (for example, if there’s road construction or an accident a bus can just go around) but they have the major (to me) disadvantage of being as uncomfortable as heck. Particularly the Nova buses, which always feel like the driver is popping the clutch when the bus pulls away, or that the driver is stomping on the brakes when the bus slows and stops.

      Maybe it’s the low center of gravity, but I constantly see standing riders holding on for dear life and I’m amazed more people don’t fall given how abrupt the stops and starts are.

      Then there’s the side-to-side lurching as the bus changes lanes or dekes around (or goes through) pot holes. Pulling into the Terminus in Longueuil is a nightmare because there are so many sharp turns, and the buses generally take them going pretty fast, as if the driver is trying to fishtail the bus.

      By comparison, any trams I’ve ridden (Canada, US, Europe) have always been smooth rides with minimal jostling about. The older I get and the more neuropathic my legs become, the more I really value that smoother ride.

    • SMD 14:50 on 2019-09-23 Permalink

      I recommend this academic history on the introduction of buses in Montreal, which were promoted by the Canadian Autobus Company, and the opposition faced from the monopoly of the Montreal Tramways Corporation. From the conclusion

      “Frustration about the tramway service of the MTC, a private company of public transport, was manifested by the support given to the proposal of the former CAC, another private company of public transport In light of the conflict that this proposal initiated, the history of the motor vehicle seems much more than the opposition between individual and public transport It is also the competition between two private corporations backing different technologies of public transport — the bus and the tramway.”

      Veilleux, D. (1996). Buses, Tramways, and Monopolies: The Introduction of Motor Vehicles into Montreal’s Public Transport Network. Michigan Historical Review, 22(2), 103-126.

Compose new post
Next post/Next comment
Previous post/Previous comment
Show/Hide comments
Go to top
Go to login
Show/Hide help
shift + esc