Updates from October, 2019 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 20:34 on 2019-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

    The city is going to give pedestrians a little more time to cross certain streets, although which ones are not yet announced. This is in response to the fact that pedestrians die, and many of them are over 65.

    The city also wants drivers to take particular care with the clocks going back this weekend and night falling earlier. Another recent bit of PR, from the SAAQ, raised a few hackles when it blamed pedestrians for wearing dark clothing. (I was looking for this story, and am amused to find that it’s preceded on La Presse by a commercial for a Lexus, driving fast on a mountain road.)

    • DeWolf 01:17 on 2019-10-30 Permalink

      Better put on that high-visibility vest and orange safety flag next time you walk down the street to buy groceries at 5pm.

  • Kate 19:49 on 2019-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

    A woman narrowly avoided getting beaned by a collapsing brick wall in Ahuntsic on Tuesday afternoon, on the opposite corner to the Patate Rouge. The building used to be a funeral home but seems to have been sitting there empty for awhile. Do buildings adjoining autoroutes suffer from more vibration than average? I’d think it likely.

    • Kate 19:35 on 2019-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

      The Bloc québécois is challenging the Liberal win in Hochelaga last week, which came in with a difference of 328 votes. It’s not just a recount: the Bloc is alleging “irregularities” took place around the poll.

      • Douglas 22:01 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

        Too many immigrants voted for the bloc?

    • Kate 12:17 on 2019-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

      It’s almost a comedy script: gangster Francesco Del Balso is on his way back to jail after breaking parole conditions for at least the fifth time.

      • Kate 09:11 on 2019-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

        It seems that to skirt the rules, pawnshop folks have been making deals out in their parking lots. The city is cracking down on this dubious behaviour to cut back on the fencing of stolen goods that happens this way.

        • Ephraim 10:24 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          Break the law, get a slap on the hand. When you look at the fines, it certainly isn’t enough to discourage it. Want to really discourage it? When you are found to violate the law, your inventory needs to be checked, with an hour charge for the person who is doing the checking. Any stolen goods are seized, on the spot, with no remuneration. So, they are fined, have the store checked at their own expense and lose the stolen merchandise…. and the manager or owner, who bought the goods, should be charged with receiving stolen goods…. you need to make it unprofitable to even contemplate buying fenced goods. (Pawn shops are already one of the most abusive businesses around… you don’t need to make them more profitable by letting them commit crime).

        • Michael Black 11:08 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          I recall reading a long time back that pawnshops pretty much disappeared in Montreal. I think a Gazette article was about the one that remained. So if I remember that right, they’ve obviously made a comeback.

          There’s that one on St. Lawrence that sells DVDs outside during the street festival, that seems less like a pawnshop as we know it. More a line of used items. From the looks of it, same with one near Guy.

          There was a recent CBC story where a musician’s car was broken into and they stole her guitar. She found it in a pawnshop, but had to buy it back “because the owner bought it in good faith”.


        • walkerp 11:54 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          How can you tell if a pawn shop is legimately selling used items or stolen ones? I bought a jigsaw from the one on St-Laurent years ago and then a contractor I know said you never should buy tools from those places as they are almost always stolen. I haven’t been back since but they have some tempting things in the window…

        • Michael Black 12:21 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          I have no idea. Just avoiding those places would work. Maybe the thing to do is avoid expensive items. Those might not be stolen, but you don’t reward someone if they are. Things with low prices might be stolen too but are less likely to be missed. Not that that legitimizes something, but buying it won’t take it out of view like expensive items where the owner might go looking for it.

          Pawnshops of course used to have a legit purposs,providing a small loan in return for some collateral. After a certain time, if the owner didn’t reclaim it, the store could sell the item to get their money back. Of course that was abused, even decades ago tv shows had pawnshops as places to fence goods.

          Buf my impression, I’ve never gone in one, is that they’ve become more !ike used stores, nobody ciming back to reclaim the items, just a source of fast cash. That may increase the number of stolen items.


        • Kate 12:22 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          Michael, the old pawnshops along St-Antoine went away when the Palais de congrès was built, but there are ones on a lot of corners around town. Yellow signs, as a rule. You won’t see them in Westmount, mind you.

        • Ephraim 15:44 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          There are plenty of them. They basically charge about 20% or more for a month and give you less than 50c on the dollar, unless it’s gold… they love gold. And you can buy your stuff back for up to 30 days, and can pay just the interest to keep it held for another 30 days.

          They have a special booklet where they have to write down the serial numbers and description of goods for the police. If it’s stolen, they still get paid something. And they are supposed to keep legal IDs of everything they purchase. Hence the parking lot thing… to get around IDs, holding the items, reporting them, etc.

          They buy those DVDs from people in stacks for almost nothing. But then again, what am I to say… I don’t even own a DVD player.

        • Mr.Chinaski 11:21 on 2019-10-30 Permalink

          I have to say… pawnshops are pretty much the only place in town to find used left-handed guitars 🙁

      • Kate 08:16 on 2019-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

        The Grande Bibliothèque has been a success story since it opened, but the underfunding that started with the financial crisis in 2008 has not let up and has cut into its events and the renewal of its collections so that public usage of the library is down. For example, it wasn’t so long ago that the library announced it would no longer be holding exhibits, preferring to focus its reduced efforts elsewhere.

        If the CAQ ever has thoughts of trying to make nice with this city, putting funds back into the GB would be a great place to get obvious bang for its buck.

        • EmilyG 08:33 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          Public usage of the library is down. Though the reason I stopped going to that library is that I’m not sure they’ve gotten rid of all the bedbugs from their latest bedbug invasion. Or maybe that could be fixed with more funding?

        • SMD 08:48 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          Good news on that front:

          L’infestation médiatisée de punaises de lit dans certains fauteuils de la Grande Bibliothèque, à l’été 2018, a également joué sur l’achalandage, ajoute M. Roy. […] De nouveaux fauteuils mieux protégés contre cette vermine devraient être installés d’ici la fin de l’année.

        • Kate 09:13 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          SMD, they have already put some hard chairs in to replace the semi-padded ones they had since the beginning. I don’t know what’s happened upstairs in the nice reading areas by the windows. Where there’s upholstery, there are places for bugs to hang out.

          I admit the bugs story has kept me away from the place.

        • Joey 10:34 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          The ebook selection is pretty good, though – even in English.

        • Ephraim 10:36 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          BB like soft furnishings…. so metal and plastic leave them no where to go.

        • EmilyG 20:54 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          Yeah, I know they have new furniture there, but that doesn’t in itself get rid of the bugs. But I understand the difficulty in getting rid of them – I heard they can hide inside books, and people can’t just look inside every page of every book in the library to try to find them.

      • Kate 08:08 on 2019-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

        Police cars drove onto a patio at the MUHC hospital on Monday and broke through it (although the lede is buried in this story, the reason for their presence being mentioned in the fifth ‘graph: “The police, however, were able to retrieve the patient and return the individual back to the hospital” raising more questions than are answered). Anyone who’s seen cops driving over grass in parks and so forth will know the SPVM never walk if they can drive somewhere, however unsuitable.

        In other news of cars being where they shouldn’t, a woman in St-Henri has had a car crash into her ground-floor flat for the fourth time in six years, which strongly suggests there’s a flaw in the street layout. The borough is promising to look into it.

        • Simon 09:41 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          Amazing, I remember this place from a previous time this happened. There’s lots of speeding on Saint-Antoine round there.

        • MarcG 09:52 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          Is it the building on street view that’s blurred out? https://goo.gl/maps/GTgBW6SMsvvKDWjt9

        • Ephraim 10:33 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          There was a famous turn at Pike River https://goo.gl/maps/DsqHM5QtCFphWkpm6 where so many people (often drunk) drove through the business that the government had to redesign the whole turn… not so sure that making a floral sign that could be a ramp was a good idea, though… but it used to be a 90 degree turn and people would just continue.

          If people keep on skipping on the turn there, the easiest thing to do is put up a bollard at the sidewalk just before the dip for wheelchairs, on both sides. You clip the turn, you lose your car. No one to blame but yourself. If you don’t like a plain bollard, put up a bollard flowerpot (aka a concrete planter). Looks decorative and spruces up the neighbourhood, but really protects the corner.

        • dhomas 12:32 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          @MarcG from the aerial view of the area, it does not appear that the blurred out house is the one that was hit by the car. In the photos of the damage from the article, you can see that the brick wall does not form a 90 degree angle, whereas the blurry house appears to (from the aerial view). You can also see that there is a small concrete portion at the bottom of the brickwork (like a “crépi”) that the blurred out house does not appear to have. As far as I can tell from these two details, it would be the house across the street from the blurred out one.

          I’m now curious, though, to know why someone would blur out their house.

        • Kate 12:50 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          dhomas, I have not investigated this in detail, but I believe Google is obliged to do so if you make the request on privacy concerns.

          I used to often take a break on that site which is a sort of game, it shows you a random Streetview scene and you have to guess where it is. I discovered that a surprising number of buildings in Germany are blurred, and assumed it had been a thing there. Most places that allow Streetview don’t have so much blurring, although I’ve found a few places around Montreal that do. I don’t know how you apply for it.

        • mare 15:35 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          It used to be that streets that had a battered persons shelter would not be included in Streetview. The whole area was left out, not just the actual building. (Can’t check, this old iPad can’t do Streetview.)

        • Michael Black 15:59 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          I thought the concern was about people not buildings. So you could be blurred out if you complained that you were in the photo.

        • MarcG 16:02 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          It’s crazy that cars crash into that building – they would have to be driving pretty far over onto the sidewalk.

        • Blork 16:24 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          Google will blur out buildings if asked. I’m not sure why people would ask for this, but plenty of people do. For reference, drop your Streetview marker down anywhere in Germany; it’s like every fourth building is blurred out.

        • Alex L 18:37 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          Drivers often get crazy along that stretch of Saint-Antoine and on Saint-Jacques. Last year, I was almost hit by someone driving super fast on the protected path that runs between Saint-Jacques and Notre-Dame. I only transit through there: I don’t know how people that live in northern Saint-Henri can cope with this constant madness.

        • Roman 19:10 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          The house that was hit is squarely in the corner of the street in the direction of traffic.

          I’m driving through this exact turn very often. I’m failing to see how it’s any special than any other turn. Why aren’t cars smashing into other corners?

        • Roman 19:11 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          This is the corner that was hit


        • Michael Black 19:14 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          I’ve seen at least story like this before. I think in NDG, but maybe others. The house gets hit more than once. So likely something wrong, either with the intersection, or some reason drivers are careless at that point.


        • Kate 08:03 on 2019-10-30 Permalink

          dhomas, you’ve evidently never spoken to a serious privacy fanatic, have you. Of course the irony is that having one house blurred on a block will, if anything, spark more curiosity about it than had it been left alone.

      • Kate 07:47 on 2019-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

        STM inspectors wearing protest camo pants were sent home from work Monday, and police were called in to do the work. Note that the SPVM has a “metro section” according to this. Inspectors are protesting a new work schedule eating more of their lives; the union says there’s nothing about the protest clothes that endangers the public as the STM has claimed.

        • SMD 08:51 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          The greatest danger to the public is the STM inspectors themselves.

        • Ephraim 10:35 on 2019-10-29 Permalink

          The city could argue that the accessibility of camo pants makes it easier for someone to pose as an inspector for nefarious reasons.

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