Updates from October, 2022 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 18:52 on 2022-10-31 Permalink | Reply  

    Media are in general agreement that the first day of the partial closure of the Lafontaine tunnel did not create a monster traffic jam as had been feared. There have been delays but nothing outrageous, although the Radio‑Canada reportage has an air of “just you wait!”

    • Kevin 22:32 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

      Hardly anyone commutes on Mondays and Tuesdays… Although I was surprised that after having cadets and cops manning lights for the past 6 weeks around the Ville Marie’s eastern edge, there were none around Monday.

    • dhomas 17:08 on 2022-11-01 Permalink

      @Kevin: I think Mondays and Fridays are probably the days with the least commuting (see my post below about it).

      My daily commute back to my home office from dropping off the kids at school takes me to somewhere between the Beaubien and Sherbrooke exits of the 25 South. When I used to take the 25 to get home, I would be going west from RDP and onto the 25 Sout to get off at the Beaubien exit.

      Since I work for a European company and it was a holiday in most of Europe today, my morning meetings were all canceled. I decided I would take the 25 to get home to see how bad it is. One thing to note is that if you’re getting onto the 25 South from the 40 West, you can no longer exit at the Beaubien exit. They’ve placed concrete dividers for all traffic arriving from the 40 West all the way down, past the Beaubien exit. If you are going east on the 40 and take the onramp to the 25 South, you can still get out at Beaubien. So, instead of getting off at my usual exit, I needed to get off at the next exit, Sherbrooke. Taking the 25 added over 30 minutes to my (regularly 15 minute) commute. It is really bad. And I didn’t even get to the bridge/tunnel. I can only imagine how much worse it is for them.

  • Kate 18:48 on 2022-10-31 Permalink | Reply  

    A woman who’d been shot showed up at an unnamed hospital Monday afternoon after shots were heard somewhere unspecified in Little Italy, Petite-Patrie or Outremont.

    Sometimes this vague news reporting gets silly.

    • Matt G 09:21 on 2022-11-01 Permalink

      A lot of cops investigating close to Beaubien at Alma yesterday afternoon…

  • Kate 14:05 on 2022-10-31 Permalink | Reply  

    Sad resolution to one of the weekend stories: the body of the baby who fell into the Mille-Îles river during a car plunge on Friday has been found. Its mother and her other child survived the incident, which La Presse ascribes to a suicidal impulse.

    • Kate 08:25 on 2022-10-31 Permalink | Reply  

      I haven’t been in Old Montreal in awhile. Has anyone seen this huge hotel that’s been built behind Viger Station and got any critique of the effect the building has on its surroundings?

      • shawn 09:07 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

        I had no idea this was happening. Looks ok!

      • Kate 09:10 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

        That’s an idealized architectural drawing, shawn. I’m wondering how it comes off in reality.

      • carswell 09:23 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

        Some photos of the building and how it fits with its surroundings in this thread on Agora Montréal:

        Based on the pics, I find it kind of predictable but less objectionable than other recent downtown buildings. Those interior renderings, on the other hand, are awful, the antithesis of warm and welcoming.

      • Myles 09:29 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

        I’m getting kind of tired of the “weird little boxed-in section with balconies” feature that’s been in style since about 2010.

      • Blork 09:37 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

        I was around that area several times this summer and I confess I never even noticed it. I guess it just blends in with all the newish condos in that area.

        Streetview from August 2022, from the Berri ramp going up to Notre-Dame: https://goo.gl/maps/Kd5CnrrRKe6mAdAh7

      • qatzelok 11:25 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

        I find the new complex of building attractive from most angles. But that it doesn’t complement the Chateau Viger in any meaningful way. In fact, the volume of the taller towers have the effect of erasing the beautiful roof of the old hotel.

        If King Charles III had been consulted, there’d have been a lot more neo-historicism – which, in this case, would have been appropriate.

      • CE 11:26 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

        I bike by it fairly often on Berri. I agree that it blends in with the other condos. From the street, it’s difficult to see the white boxy tower.

      • DeWolf 11:27 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

        It’s still under construction so it’s hard to give it a real critique. But it connects with the Notre-Dame viaduct with a grand staircase that has a nice view of the old station. And it will had commercial spaces which is much needed in that particular area, which is entirely residential despite the high density.

        Architecturally, I find it a bit disjointed, but I think that’s partly deliberate so as to have a variety of scales and materials.

        All in all, I think it adds value to Viger Station, which was lost in a sea of parking, and it will create a lively corner in an area that feels like an adjunct to Old Montreal rather than a proper neighbourhood.

      • shawn 12:17 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

        I do agree with the other comments that it seems so predicable. It’s hard to imagine many of these contemporary buildings becoming treasured by future generations. That said, as Chris points out, it adds value to what was a dead space behind the old station.

    • Kate 08:07 on 2022-10-31 Permalink | Reply  

      Shots were fired in a schoolyard in Longue‑Pointe Sunday evenings. No victims have turned up.

      • Kate 07:49 on 2022-10-31 Permalink | Reply  

        As everyone knew would happen, things are slow and tight getting through the tunnel Monday morning.

        TVA has a chopper in the air and La Presse has live coverage.

        La Presse also talks to some commuters.

        The Journal has drawings of the work to be done which give a pretty good visual explanation of the project. Essentially they’re rebuilding the tunnel while keeping it open.

        Paul Journet echoes François Cardinal in telling us politicians have been inept in preparing for the situation.

        • Faiz imam 08:40 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

          Not that bad honestly.

          Just had a meeting with many of our transporters. It’s basically fine right now. Seems to be everyone was sufficiently terrified and volume is way down.

          Now to see how it balances out day to day.

        • walkerp 09:10 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

          Thanks for the insider info, Faiz. Keep us posted and good luck!

        • dhomas 20:47 on 2022-10-31 Permalink

          I live around the 25 South, right between the Beaubien and Sherbrooke exits. I pass by (on the service road) pretty much every weekday, after dropping off my kids at school. Mondays and Fridays have been quieter lately. I chalk that up to people working from home more on Mondays and Fridays (there’s even a name for them: https://metro.co.uk/2021/10/05/theres-a-name-for-people-who-work-tuesday-wednesday-and-thursdays-15369656/). But today was especially calm. I think people avoided it, like Faiz said. We’ll see how it goes when the TWaTs are back tomorrow.

      • Kate 11:11 on 2022-10-30 Permalink | Reply  

        Canadian armed forces reservists are holding a military exercise this weekend on the Îles de Boucherville and other islands in that part of the river.

        • Kate 09:12 on 2022-10-30 Permalink | Reply  

          François Cardinal points out scathingly that the plan to renovate the Lafontaine tunnel has been known since 2019, so why are people panicking and improvising now, in a disorganized scramble, on the eve of the partial closure?

          Some options for Monday morning for anyone facing the tunnel and a list of the measures being taken by the city and by public transit to work around the limitations.

          • Kate 08:45 on 2022-10-30 Permalink | Reply  

            Another longtime feature of the old Main has closed permanently. Charcuterie Fairmount, on the Main just north of Roy, has closed after a fire in the shop meant they had to either upgrade or go out of business. The owner, who opened the shop on his arrival from Hungary at 21, is now 86.

            • walkerp 10:02 on 2022-10-30 Permalink

              Oh that’s really sad. It was a great butcher shop. Constantly under pressure from the food authorities whose standards were based on factory scale issues (where they forced them to put their sausages at a certain temperature after the Maple Leaf e coli scandal even though they had been making safe sausage their own way there for decades) and now finally done in by these stupid codes. That was one of the best smokers in town. I never knew his name until now, but Joseph was always pleasant and charming at the counter. They had the best butcher blocks, worn concave over the years. Delicious little meat buns and cracklings. Really, really sad.

          • Kate 08:42 on 2022-10-30 Permalink | Reply  

            Residents in western Villeray are mobilizing to save Ste‑Cécile church not as a place of worship, but because it serves as a community hub for senior and youth groups. But the parish may be forced to sell the building because it costs too much to keep up.

            It’s a pattern we see all over town. The builders of these huge structures assumed hordes of parishioners would go on tithing forever. They didn’t foresee a time when most people wouldn’t be practising religion any more, but would still need spaces for community activities. And these churches include features like towers and tall spires with heavy bells that can become dangerous and unstable over time (cf. St‑Zotique on Notre‑Dame in St‑Henri and St‑Esprit on Masson in Rosemont).

            Maybe architects need to work on projects to partially deconstruct these buildings, removing the unstable and dangerous features but leaving the church hall and a part of the open church space for performances and big meetings. Get on this, somebody.

            • DeWolf 10:48 on 2022-10-30 Permalink

              These are historic structures, and they should receive funding for upkeep like any historic structure. (Putting aside the fact that Quebec doesn’t have a good track record of that in the first place…) The problem is that most of them have no heritage grading and therefore no protection.

              I’m not religious and neither are many (most?) Montrealers, even the ones that profess to be Catholic, but these churches were the crucible of the city’s development. The trickiest elements to preserve, like the steeples, are exactly what need to be kept because they have defined the urban landscape for hundreds of years. A Montreal without a skyline punctuated by steeples and towers is not Montreal. The sheer density of church towers here is one of the things that sets it apart from so many other North American cities. Letting a critical mass of them disappear would be like knocking down Old Montreal or scrapping the rest of the Golden Square Mile mansions.

              I’m not dogmatic about this, though. Being turned into condos like the St-Jean church in Little Italy wouldn’t be bad, although a community use for Ste-Cécile would be best, given that it anchors its immediate neighbourhood. But the important thing is to preserve these churches and their main architectural elements to keep Montreal from being completely denatured.

          • Kate 14:27 on 2022-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

            Why have all the city traffic cameras stopped? They’re all serving a shot they took on October 18.

          • Kate 10:06 on 2022-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

            A city councillor is parking where he likes based on a diplomatic license plate that belonged to his partner, who died in 2018. Serge Sasseville sits as an independent city councillor in Ville‑Marie.

            • Kate 10:01 on 2022-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

              The project to extend the SRB Pie‑IX from Pierre‑De Coubertin down to Notre‑Dame has been put on hold, the two bids having come in much higher than hoped.

              • Thomas 10:38 on 2022-10-29 Permalink

                Now that we have succeeded in killing the REM de l’Est, thankfully there is no pressing need to extend the BRT down to Notre-Dame. After all, why should the east end ever get any rapid transit (or any other kind of consideration)?

            • Kate 09:32 on 2022-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

              The STM’s Bellechasse bus garage will be twice as expensive and take twice as long as forecast, the bill coming in around half a billion dollars. The facility won’t be delivered till 2024, either.

              • Michael 12:59 on 2022-10-29 Permalink

                500M to hold 200 buses.


              • Kate 14:36 on 2022-10-29 Permalink

                It’s a pretty spiffy design.

                Anyone know whether it will be connected to Rosemont metro station, or if there’s any reason to do that? It’s basically just across the street.

            • Kate 09:30 on 2022-10-29 Permalink | Reply  

              A group called Trajectoire Québec says transit fares from Longueuil metro should be cheaper with the tunnel semi‑closure impending, but stops short of suggesting it should be free.

              Prisoners are being transferred off‑island in advance of the semi‑closure so that they can attend hearings in Longueuil on time.

              Some are saying that the first week of closure will be the worst as people adapt. New transport minister Geneviève Guilbault went so far as to equate it to the pandemic in its effects.

              La Presse asks whether apps will be able to help drivers find better routes. CBC looks at options.

              • mare 11:02 on 2022-10-29 Permalink

                It would be interesting if they made it free on the inbound stretch. It might attract people who haven’t taken transit to work before. Unfortunately it won’t give them a great experience because the capacity of the Yellow line during rush hour is already pretty maxed out, so the moment the tunnel is open again they’re back into their car. (And if they use a feeder bus, or park at Longueul they’ll pay anyway.)

              • steph 13:11 on 2022-10-29 Permalink

                The Chrono app has not track the tunnel closure or the re-routed busses (accodring to anecdotes from last friday the 21st). People were left stranded at Radisson station with zero indication at the bus stop either- the bus (61 & 461) was NEVER coming. The anectote incuded a complete closure at Berri which made going to Longeuil impossible as well – Get your shit together STM.

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