Updates from May, 2021 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 22:52 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

    A 16-year-old boy was stabbed Friday evening in an attack by several people in St-Laurent. He was seriously injured but not fatally (so far).

    • dwgs 08:16 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      Updated to say that his life is out of danger.

  • Kate 22:46 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

    No surprise here: a new study done for CDPQ Infra supports the “need” for an elevated train on René-Lévesque.

    The main reason seems to be the idea that the REM has to be faster than motor traffic to persuade people to abandon their cars and take the train. Although the related assertion that a surface tram would mean more work on René than an elevated train strikes me as completely bogus.

    Lots of cities work well with surface trams. Why not ours?

    • david675 00:08 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      Even Anton wouldn’t come in and support a street level train over grade-separated train. It’s a bus without the dynamism – fixed (so can’t be redeployed), ultra costly, and slower.

      Elevated or underground makes the most sense.

      And let’s get real: R-L qua shoe street just sucks. It’s ugly, beat up, and disused. A Vancouver-style high capacity elevated toy train set buzzing people here, and there is not going to be this District 9-style conversion of that dumpy part of one of the dumpiest axial/arterial/showpiece roadways maybe in the French-speaking world.

      Plus, Lemay is just great.

      If this thing really happens, in 10 years people will wonder how we ever got by without it.

    • Kate 09:35 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      david, have you even walked along René in the last ten years? You have no idea what you’re talking about. It is not ugly, beat up, and disused. Writing like this – “one of the dumpiest axial/arterial/showpiece roadways” – suggests you are more seriously out of touch with conditions in Montreal than I ever imagined.

    • Uatu 10:13 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      It’ll be interesting to see what happens when it breaks down or when it needs maintenance. It’s in the middle of the street so more road closures and detours etc. And it will break and need maintenance because that’s reality. Sometimes we forget that when all we hear is PR speak and dirt free computer renderings

    • John B 11:15 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      For maintenance & breakdowns, that’s something we can figure out. What does Vancouver do, or Chicago or NYC’s elevated sections of the subways, or Wuppertal? Vancouver’s is the only one built of concrete, so it’s probably the best place to look to see what will happen.

      R-L is kind of a “Shining Skyscraper” street for the short section starting just east of Guy to St-Laurent-ish. Done right it could add another level to the streetscape in a very futuristic way with direct connections into towers. Done wrong, well, I think we know what that’ll be like. Outside of that skyscraper alley R-L is kind of run down. Either the REM will revitalize it or drive it further into run-down-ness.

    • Alex L 13:55 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      Why won’t they run it under another nearby street, like de la Gauchetière? There are few skyscrapers along that street and certainly fewer public services. Connections to the orange line would theoretically be much easier, and it leads directly to destinations such as the gare centrale, square Victoria, palais des Congrès, Chinatown, the CHUM, etc.

    • dhomas 14:55 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      @David### I hear you can also get a 5 and a half for about 500$ in Montreal. 😛

    • david335 16:43 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      I know R-L by heart. It’s better now than it used to be, and I guess most streets in Montreal are pretty dumpy, but my point is that it’s no big loss if we run a skytrain down there.

    • qatzelok 20:56 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      For me, people who think an elevated train on R-L is a good idea aren’t simply wrong – they should never be allowed to decide anything regarding urbanism or architecture.

      I wouldn’t even ask them their opinion on anything beyond math.

    • Ant6n 14:50 on 2021-05-10 Permalink

      A tram for rene levesque is a great idea – to replace the 435 bus. Being more slow it would be more of a circulator, it’s not really appropriate for transit going to the end of the island (and couldn’t compete with the existing green line).

      One thing i really question is why I’ve would allow this giant impact on the street for a tiny amount of ridership. If we were „sacrificing“ rene levesque in order to double the rapid transit capacity of the City, it would be worth considering. But for an measly 5-10%?

      Incidentally, if they hadnt crippled the capacity of the Mount royal tunnel when building the rem1, then the rem2 could probably be a branch of the rem1, going along the mascouche line. It would be simple, cheaper, and still connect Montrea north and PAT with downtown

    • Ant6n 14:52 on 2021-05-10 Permalink

      Argh auto correct: i question why WE would allow this impact.

  • Kate 22:38 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

    Hyperallergic has an essay on the survival of Cinéma L’Amour well past what it calls the Golden Age of Porn.

    • Ephraim 10:20 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

      Could you imagine if there was a murder there… all the DNA! (snicker)

    • MarcG 11:26 on 2021-05-08 Permalink


  • Kate 16:24 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

    Here are some weekend driving notes.

    • Kate 16:23 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

      Two busloads of protesters who came to the Olympic stadium last weekend to protest health measures may have been exposed to Covid. But of course Covid is a hoax invented to keep the sheeple docile, so if they die, it was clearly from some other cause.

      • Kate 15:43 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

        The mayor has earmarked a new $4.5-million aid package to help downtown bars and restaurants get through whatever remains of the pandemic.

        I hope it does help. Every so often, it crops up that when the city offers help like this, the criteria are so narrow, the demands for documentation so rigid and complex, and the delay before the money comes so long, that the money doesn’t do anyone much good.

        • david675 00:10 on 2021-05-08 Permalink


      • Kate 10:36 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

        The BBC has a feature on the politics of why only Quebec can claim poutine as a “national” dish.

        Now I know what I want for lunch today…

        • steph 13:42 on 2021-05-07 Permalink

          I’ve gotten into too many late night arguments over this. The pure-laine defenders of poutine can never explain why the poutine wars shouldn’t be kept to Princeville, Warwik and Drummondville. While we’re going full-absurd, why not ask Montrealers to stop from appropriating poutine? Where’s the “shut down La Banquise” petition – their mutations are clearly sacriligious. It’s all absurd.

        • Blork 16:09 on 2021-05-07 Permalink

          While steph’s divergence is toward the absurd, this article makes total sense to me. It’s not about any knee-jerk reactions around “appropriation” it’s just a simple fact that Canada isn’t a monolith. Poutine was created and popularized in Quebec (and AFAIK Quebecers eat the most of it per-capita), so leave it at that, even if it’s available elsewhere.

          Jiggs Dinner and fish & scrunchions are Newfoundland dishes, and we’re happy to call them as such. Nanaimo bars are a BC thing and are lucky that “Nanaimo” is right in the name, but if they’d been called “Orca bars” they’d still be a BC thing, and that’s just fine. Donairs (not quite the same as a “doner”) are most definitely a Halifax thing, not a “Canadian” thing.

          In the US a cheesesteak is a Philly thing, not an “American” thing. Avocado toast is a California thing, even though you can get it anywhere. A goetta is a Cincinnati thing (not an American thing or even an Ohio thing).

          Regional specialties that are just variations on wider-known items (like Cincinnati chili or Oklahoma onion burgers) usually have the name of their origin built in. But items that are unique often don’t. And it’s OK for those items to be claimed by the places where they developed and grew to prominence. This is what helps define the country as beautifully diverse.

        • thomas 23:20 on 2021-05-07 Permalink

          If one uses the “correct” ingredients then it doesn’t where it is made — it is poutine. I confirmed this with Drummondville peeps so — that is the definitive judgement.

        • david675 00:14 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

          Nah, Blork is right. I’ve had “poutine” in Tokyo, LA, Miami, New England, and Canada. While the Canadians cone closest in some cases (the ever important curds, most specifically), the dish is just Quebec down to the ground. And I’d add Granby to the list.

        • thomas 07:13 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

          @david675 sorry but your judgement is suspect, I can think of no greater folly than to eat poutine while experiencing Tokyo.

        • dwgs 08:19 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

          My rule is that I only order poutine from chip trucks or little cantines away from big cities and only in Qc or one or two places in eastern Ontario. It has never failed me.

        • Blork 18:08 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

          My point wasn’t that you can’t get good poutine elsewhere, just that it’s “identity” is and should remain Quebec. The same way you can get good sushi outside of Japan, but sushi will always be a Japanese thing.

        • steph 16:58 on 2021-05-09 Permalink

          I like my authentic quebec poutine with grated pizza cheese and tomato sauce.

      • Kate 08:21 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

        The city will be expected to pay for the work needed around the REM de l’est: reorganizing and repaving streets and other infrastructure stuff, as well as anything needed to keep the elevated track from becoming a new Crémazie-type scar on the city. The bill is estimated here as half a billion, so we know it will be at least twice that.

        • Daniel D 09:29 on 2021-05-07 Permalink

          Clearly nobody learnt anything from the controversies of the first REM project except to roll over and accept the inevitable.

        • Mark 13:44 on 2021-05-07 Permalink

          This is ridiculous. They are trying to force a one size fits all solution to transit. Despite all its shortcomings (expropriating the tunnel and existing tracks, stations in the middle of nowhere in the WI, etc.), you “could” make the argument that the layout of the first iteration of the REM “sort of” works: A suburban train, elevated and on the ground, in low to medium density neighbourhoods. Notice the extensive use of quotation marks.

          This is the model, now we need to use it everywhere, regardless of whether that form of transit is actually suited for the part of the city it is trying to serve.

          The opportunity cost of the REM de l’Est 10B price tag (12B/15B) is looking really high…that’s 10+ metro stations, 50+ km of tram or a lot of rapid buses.

        • DisgruntledGoat 14:03 on 2021-05-07 Permalink

          You make fair points about the opportunity costs Mark, but where’s the beef?

          The STM has had the Pie-IX rapid bus corridor project in the works since 2010 at least. Where’s the result?

          The blue extension was proposed in 2013 and won’t be done until 2026…13 years assuming no delays.

        • Kate 17:21 on 2021-05-07 Permalink

          DisgruntledGoat, the city has been waiting on provincial money forever to complete the blue line extension, which has been in the works a lot longer than 2013 – I have a timeline of the evolutions.

          That’s why this situation is so bad for the city: it spent money on endless studies on the blue line, waiting and waiting. And then the Caisse comes up with the REM and suddenly money gushes out. And then I see people saying, well, Quebec had to do something, since the city never got its act together.

          But there’s probably a room at city hall stacked to the ceiling with expensive studies which were all Quebec would give money for, till it spawned its own idea, a transit system that’s meant to generate profit for the Caisse, whereas the STM is a service rather than a profit-making venture.

        • david675 00:17 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

          The key thing for the government these days, which runs against Metro expansion, is that it’s unlikely they’ll fund anything that isn’t automated.

        • Mark 08:57 on 2021-05-08 Permalink

          As much as I would prefer seeing transit being developed by experts and not money managers, I think it’s fair to assume that the funding model in Montreal won’t change any time soon. I do agree with DisgruntledGoat, it’s clear that if we take the REM off the table, it’s not like 10B suddenly appear for metros and buses. So maybe opportunity cost isn’t the right term, because that money would have never materialized for an STM project.

          So yay for investment that we would have never seen.

          However, this article reinforces the key flaw of the model: the Caisse needs a solid ROI. They are prepared to spend X, no more. So if construction costs go up (which they are dramatically right now) or if ridership isn’t high enough (WFH), those gaps have to be filled by others, either by asking them to pay to finish stations, pay higher royalties, and so on.

          Various levels of government end up having to spend billions on a project it doesn’t even own. Oh look, we found the money.

        • Ant6n 14:55 on 2021-05-10 Permalink

          The caisse demands 10% return, higher share of the profits etc supposedly because they on the risk. That’s a lie, they try to push away cost increases any chance they get

      • Kate 07:35 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

        A beauty salon on Papineau in the Plateau was firebombed overnight. Nobody was hurt.

        • Kate 07:27 on 2021-05-07 Permalink | Reply  

          An organization from Toronto will be opening a domestic violence shelter for Muslim women here.

          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