Updates from September, 2023 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 19:41 on 2023-09-15 Permalink | Reply  

    A car crashed into an apartment building in Ahuntsic on Friday afternoon, becoming “80% encased into the structure” and making the building so unstable that residents were evacuated. The driver is fine. TVA has better photos.

    • Ian 20:52 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      That’s an oddly specific percentage.

    • MarcG 11:13 on 2023-09-16 Permalink

      Looks more like 81% to me.

  • Kate 14:20 on 2023-09-15 Permalink | Reply  

    People are renting out dubious basement rooms and garage spaces to live in which our society deems unsuitable or unsafe. I encountered a few like this when doing census work – a woman living in a basement furnace room, several people living in what looked like back sheds (“hangars”) that were never originally meant as living spaces. But they at least had addresses, or they would not have been on the list.

    • Ephraim 20:33 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      There was someone who put an apartment in a rebuilt shed with an entrance at the back. I know they were trying to sell it (coprospérité). From my understanding, without a streetside door and address, it’s can’t be sold separately and a notary won’t sign the paperwork.

  • Kate 14:12 on 2023-09-15 Permalink | Reply  

    Claude Cormier, who designed the ring on Place Ville‑Marie and the pink baubles that used to hang over the Village, has died. He was 63.

    Cormier also redesigned Dorchester Square and came up with the lipstick pink forest in the Palais des Congrès.

    Update: A eulogy from Toula Drimonis.

    • orr 14:37 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      Montreal is a city with large amount of top quality public art and also that ring.

    • carswell 18:33 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      A video tour of his home has been posted on Agora Mtl. Odd, challenging and not a place I expect I’d feel particularly comfortable in (which he implies is part of the point) but also kind of wonderful.

      Though I won’t entirely spoil the surprise, the house has a fixture that I’ve often wondered why so few homes have and that he says is a must: a urinal.


    • Spi 19:05 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      The topic has come up in conversation a few times, and every women that has heard the idea is violently opposed to there being a urinal in their home so that’s part of the explanation you’re looking for.

    • EmilyG 19:17 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I hadn’t heard of him before, but I’ve enjoyed the pink balls and the giant ring.

    • JP 19:30 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I really like the lipstick pink forest & pink balls. Don’t care much for the ring but lots of other people seem to like it based on what I observe when passing by.

    • EmilyG 19:46 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I really like the ring, but I understand not everybody does.

    • Ian 20:28 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I think every city should have a gigantic cock ring.

    • Uatu 10:01 on 2023-09-16 Permalink

      I think it’s great we have a Stargate in the middle of downtown

    • Kate 19:59 on 2023-09-16 Permalink

      > that he says is a must: a urinal

      I wouldn’t find any use for one, but I do envy the Japanese bathtub. I’ve wanted one ever since seeing My Neighbour Totoro.

    • Aineko Marcx 00:49 on 2023-09-17 Permalink

      If the big ring was just fixed into some other generican urban concrete forest then it would be an epitome of kitsch. But the Mont Royal inside that ring totally elevated it from the potential tacky plane.

    • JaneyB 07:48 on 2023-09-17 Permalink

      I love that pink forest in the Palais. I enjoy the stargate ring more than I thought I would, especially when looking through it toward the mountain. We have delightful public art here in this city.

    • MarcG 09:09 on 2023-09-17 Permalink

      Smelling urinal cakes while sleeping (it’s on the wall next to his bed?) definitely isn’t on my must-have reno list.

    • carswell 19:05 on 2023-09-17 Permalink

      No, women don’t have a use for a urinal. But men do. And if women who are opposed to them thought a little about it, they might conclude they’re not such a bad idea.

      A friend once pointed out that a man standing with his fly open or pants down in front of a toilet isn’t peeing in the can but hoping to. For various reasons, the best intentions can go wrong and the pee doesn’t always end up in the intended destination. And even when it does, splashing occurs, with drops making it out of the toilet and onto the surroundings, including the man’s legs. Most of that is eliminated with a well-designed urinal. Plus having a urinal virtually eliminates two of women’s long-standing gripes about men: toilet seats being left up and drops on the seat when it’s left down.

      While I wouldn’t want a bedside urinal, that would be for aesthetic reasons, not out of concern for cakes or smells. These days, cakes are viewed as sources of unnecessary pollution and modern, self-flushing urinals are designed not to need them. Case in point: none of the urinals, many of them heavily used, at the very busy CEPSUM have cakes and I’ve never noticed a smell, even in the smaller, less well-ventilated restrooms.

    • jeather 10:47 on 2023-09-18 Permalink

      If you want to add a urinal to the bathroom, whatever, go with god. But I would figure out how to drown anyone who put a urinal in my bedroom in said urinal.

    • CE 12:32 on 2023-09-18 Permalink

      I think it’s going to take a while to fully appreciate the affect that Claude Cormier has had on the urban landscape of Montreal (as well as Toronto). Some of the best public spaces built in the 21st Century were designed by him and his team. (Place d’Youville is probably the most representative of his style and, I think, some of his best work). Take a look at the projects he’s done around the city, you’ll likely be surprised by how much he’s done.


  • Kate 11:54 on 2023-09-15 Permalink | Reply  

    Cindy Wabanonik, 42, who died in that group overdose event last weekend, was a well loved member of the Indigenous community.

    • Aineko Marcx 16:50 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      (personally and perspectively) after a couple of traumatic magic mushroom ‘overdoses’, cannabis products does not work out on me anymore. So I did some research and noticed that real world statistics indicate a strong negative correlation between psilocybin use and opioid overdose. I wonder if we are going to see much less opioids-related deaths when, in the forseeable future, the psychedelic tradition gains a significantly bigger fanbase in the city.

  • Kate 10:09 on 2023-09-15 Permalink | Reply  

    Toula Drimonis has moved to the Gazette with a weekly opinion piece – but I can’t read it, since I don’t subscribe.

    • carswell 10:23 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      And her former readership falls by 90%… Sad!

    • Kevin 10:32 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      Postmedia sites are notoriously glitchy and even though I subscribe, my login gets kicked off all the time.
      Which is a convoluted way of saying I can read the article whether or not I’m logged in.

    • Meezly 11:54 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I have a trick that kind of exploits the notorious glitchiness of news sites that Kevin is talking about. When clicking on a link, before the web page (and pay wall) gets fully loaded, use the select all + copy shortcuts. This will copy all the text + images on that page (including the article) to your clipboard and you can then paste to a text editor. You need fast fingers as you only have a couple of seconds to execute the two shortcuts, and sometimes it takes a few tries, but it usually works for me for specific articles I must read!

    • mare 14:10 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I’m glad she found an additional outlet for her excellent writing, but I doubt she’ll find a very receptive readership.

      (I have no problems reading it, I might use the exact flavour of ad-blocker that they apparently don’t detect.)

    • PatrickC 17:20 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I just refused to renew my digital subscription to the Gazette. The site was just too annoying. I do wish I could read Drimonis’ column, though…

    • Ian 20:31 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

  • Kate 09:58 on 2023-09-15 Permalink | Reply  

    Residents of Maisonneuve are upset at the razing of a wooded area near Assomption metro by a developer putting up condos.

    • saintjacques 10:29 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      We need transit-oriented development and more dense housing near already-existing mass-transit infrastructure.

      But no, not there!

    • dhomas 11:00 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I live not far from there. It’s a shame that they are razing the woods. It is (was) a nice, densely wooded area. However, idiots have been dumping construction waste and other crap on those woods for some time. It wasn’t really being taken care of. Still, there are tons of lots around Assomption metro that could have been built on before razing those woods.

    • saintjacques 11:22 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      To be clear, my original comment was supposed to be firmly tongue-in-cheek. I’m not a fan of gratuitously cutting down trees, but assuming that the goal is to create additional housing, I’d rather cut down trees 150 meters away from an existing Metro station than pave over agricultural land on the far side of Autoroute 30.

      Also, what do existing zoning rules require/permit? It appears to me that areas west of the metro station, between Assomption and Viau are not zoned residential, and even that wooded lot looks pretty marginal from a desirability standpoint.

    • Kate 11:35 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I don’t know who saintjacques is, but I know dhomas is right. There are lots that could more readily be sacrificed.

      dhomas, would you call the area Maisonneuve? My map was indecisive. It’s in the borough of MHM but the Assomption metro zone seems to be in an uncertain area between Longue‑Pointe, Viauville and Cité‑Jardin without belonging to any of them.

    • DeWolf 11:37 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      The areas west of the boulevard are remaining industrial, but everything east of it has been rezoned residential. There’s a PPU:


    • saintjacques 12:21 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      I’m looking at the area on Google Maps, which has no way of distinguishing between occupied buildings and defunct buildings, but cars and trailer trucks in an adjacent parking lot are a good proxy.

      Looking at the east side of Assomption, there is one lot between Chauveau and Sherbrooke – looking at the interactive zoning map, that appears to be zoned commercial. And there is one, smaller lot a bit further east of Marseilles from the wooded lot. Looking at the zoning map, that one appears to be zoned light industrial, as best I can tell – so can’t build residential on either of those unless you get a derogation.

      Everything between Assomption and Viau appears to be zoned industrial or light industrial, except for the strip fronting directly on Sherbrooke East, which is commercial.

      I think there is a breezy assumption that just because there are *other* vacant lots nearby, that therefore it is inadvisable, unethical, immoral or plain downright stupid to build on the wooded lot at Assomption and Marseilles. But these sentiments – I share the aversion to cutting down trees – ignore the fact that our democratically-elected government has put these other lots out of reach for building housing.

      In the interim, that wooded lot, which is both available, currently zoned for residential, and smack on top of a metro station, just sits there. And nothing gets built, except out in the exurbs. I completely understand the intrinsic value of a wooded lot. Open, undeveloped space is in itself a good thing. But just be honest that you are willing to trade housing for that. And, to reiterate, housing that would be right on top of existing mass transit infrastructure.

      And then people kvetch about there not being enough housing on the island. And meanwhile, they cheerfully pave over yet another agricultural lot out in the fringes of Brossard or Boucherville. But it’s apparently better if they build something I don’t like *over there,* because I’m willing to trade that to ensure they haven’t built something I don’t like *over here.*

    • dhomas 13:26 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      @saintjacques the two buildings east of Assomption are in active use. One is used as a Natrel distribution center (the one right next to the former wooded area). The other is a Renaud-Bray distribution center. Before that, it stood unused for a number of years as a former Cascades paper building until Renaud-Bray came in and renovated the place. I could only see the improvements from outside since I biked by daily from 2014 to 2018, but I could tell that they cleaned up the brickwork and replaced all the windows. But I saw the progression of improvements.

      The building on the west side of Assomption is used by a company called Scientific Games, though I’m not sure they’re still using it. Just south of there is a Coca-Cola plant.

      Most of the lots north of the metro on the east side of Assomption are already being built on. Next to the bowling alley, around the metro edicule, etc. I think the lot that appears empty on Google Maps between Chauveau and Sherbrooke may also already being built on.

      There has been much development in the area lately. It was a notoriously underused area. They are also redeveloping the area south of there. I think they are going to extend Assomption towards the south, to reach Notre-Dame. I already see a lot of work having been done from the Dickson side. I think much of this is to accommodate the new shipping yard being developped by Ray-Mont (still sour about that).

      @Kate I have no idea what the area would be called, TBH. I think Maisonneuve is more the area around Marché Maisonneuve. It might be Longue-Pointe, which is just south of where I live, but I don’t know if it reaches that far west (the Eastern border being around Highway 25). I think Viauville stops at the train tracks (behind Grace Dart). I had never heard of Cité-Jardin before, but I have to assume it’s next to the golf course, where there are all those posh houses. So, I would just called that area “HoMa”. It’s kinda “limitrophe”.

    • Kate 13:57 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      Cité-Jardin is marked on Google maps. It’s a strange spot. Closer to Rosemont Blvd the houses are sort of rural and hobbity, but when you get over toward the golf course there are some real 1960s-modernist houses. Worth walking around in.

    • saintjacques 15:02 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

      The number of vacant lots on which one could build housing with any kind of density, within a 750m radius of Assomption metro, is pretty small, especially when you remove all the lots that are zoned so that residential is not a permitted use.

      Ideally, Assomption and Cadillac metro stations would each have been built about 250 meters to the east, to better serve residential areas, but have no idea what those neighbourhoods looked like 45+ years ago when they were planning and building the metro.

  • Kate 09:34 on 2023-09-15 Permalink | Reply  

    Women are becoming a growing proportion of the homeless here.

    TVA claims to have found the largest homeless camp in town. But this is not the first time we’ve heard of a camp near Lantic Sugar.

    TVA also talks to a man who used to have a good job with Bombardier but is now homeless, having been unable to pay his rent.

    • Kate 09:24 on 2023-09-15 Permalink | Reply  

      Weekend events from CityCrunch, Montreal Secret, CultMTL, Sarah’s Weekend List.

      Highway woes of the weekend.

      • Kate 09:23 on 2023-09-15 Permalink | Reply  

        Masks are back for health care workers at the MUHC.

        I have a minor medical appointment Monday, and the website where I confirmed my attendance had a text block about wearing a mask. I couldn’t tell whether it was new or had been left up and forgotten about. I’ll be taking metro and bus though, so I’ll show up masked and see what happens.

        • MarcG 09:59 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

          The amazing thing is that they ever stopped, and that they won’t be upgrading the masks to N95s even though they know they’re superior. Covid killed 10% of people who caugh it in the hospital according to leaked data from an Australian health department.

        • carswell 10:08 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

          Would be surprising if any medical professional did anything other than thank you for wearing a mask.

          Have started masking on metros and busses. Have seen no one at the gym wearing one (I go first thing in the morning — 6:30 a.m. — and, though it’s often very busy, almost all the users are late-teen/early-20s uni students, a cohort that, even in the darkest days of the lockdown, refused to wear them and continued partying like nothing was wrong). But when I asked one of the conseillers about it yesterday, she said a number of members, mostly not kids, are in fact wearing them and thought she’d detected a recent uptick.

        • Kevin 10:34 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

          I had to fill out a Covid survey before showing up to an appt. at the Jewish on Thursday.

        • EmilyG 11:55 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

          I never stopped wearing a mask in indoor public places and public transit.

        • waffles 13:59 on 2023-09-15 Permalink

          (✿◠‿◠) me too! Masking is caring *.·:·.✧

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