Updates from February, 2024 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 18:04 on 2024-02-18 Permalink | Reply  

    The director of the city’s snow removal department is left at a loss during one of the least snowy winters on record.

    • Mozai 09:25 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      According to the weather-records bot on reddit, it’s been the least snowfall in early February since 1980. https://redd.it/1ap8f85

    • Meezly 10:37 on 2024-02-20 Permalink

      Wouldn’t the city save more money if they don’t have to remove snow as often?

    • Kate 11:02 on 2024-02-20 Permalink

      The city will save some money, but there must be minimums guaranteed for the contractors, and the city has to keep paying its own blue‑collar workers even if they have less to do. Besides, there’s storing and maintaining all the machinery.

  • Kate 18:02 on 2024-02-18 Permalink | Reply  

    A toy store owner on Queen Mary is blaming the decline in her business on the new bus lane on that street – and not on the pandemic, online shopping, inflation and the cost of living or any other factor.

    • Jonathan 10:14 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      What a terrible news report. To expand on what you say, Kate, there is no sense of journalistic professionalism.

    • jeather 11:36 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      Curious, too, because quite recently but more than a year before the bus lanes they moved across the street to a decidedly smaller location (due to a fire), which suggests that they weren’t exactly doing great due to the pandmic. (I actually know someone who had a conversation with the owner about the supply chain problem — shipping was slow and IIRC all their winter coats/snowsuits came in so late they had to be discounted immediately.) It’s possible the bus lanes made it worse, or didn’t allow them to bounce back as quickly as needed, of course, but that area is very weird for commercial space.

    • Blork 11:56 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      Arguably, community news reporting like this isn’t exactly hardcore “investigative” reporting. If it were, then the journalist should have checked with other businesses along the street to see if they too are seeing a drop in business between 3:30 and 6:30, and she could have asked to see the books for the past few years to see how real this drop in business really is.

      But Podunk community news (arguably) only has the role of showing what’s going on in the community, and what’s going on here is a 73-year-old closing down her business and blaming the bus lanes for a drop in sales. The reporter probably had half a day to put the whole thing together.

      And FWIW, the news report does say that the OWNER blames the bus lane, which is not the same as the news reporter saying the bus lane is at fault (which is how FOX News would probably report it), and it does get a quote from the borough mayor, who points out that other businesses are doing well and new businesses are opening along the street.

    • jeather 12:06 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      The reason new businesses are opening is that old businesses are closing (some long running businesses, some businesses that were just recently the new businesses opening). Other businesses might be doing well, of course — there are stores there that have been around forever.

    • Joey 12:22 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      I spend a lot of time in that stretch of the city during rush hour (usually in my car). Two observations:

      1. The parking ‘nightmare’ induced by the bus lanes is pure BS. Parking is available and the presence of the bus lanes hasn’t stopped anyone from stopping/waiting while their passenger runs errands.

      2. The stretch of Queen-Mary from, say, MacDonald to Ponsard is where I’ve witnessed – constantly – the worst, most selfish driving habits in Montreal – double-parking, u-turns, illegal left turns, no signalling, texting while driving – you name it, you’ll see it all in under five minutes.

      That neighbourhood is interesting from an urbanism perspective – the commercial strip is dense and built up enough (and geographically concentrated enough) to warrant pedestrian-friendly shopping. And yet the surrounding areas, especially the wealthier neighbourhoods to the immediate west, are made up of people with cars and garages who wouldn’t dream of walking 10 minutes to get bagels when you could just double-park. You could do a really interesting Master’s degree just documenting observations from that small stretch of Montreal.

    • jeather 14:23 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      I have a friend who lives around there, and I will say that parking is decidedly harder near there on weekdays. Not impossible, but there is a real difference. That said I actually see people are no longer parking in the reserved lanes during rush hour, which wasn’t true at first.

      It is 100% true that the driving habits and double parking in that area are terrible, though I haven’t noticed a huge number of illegal u-turns there. In my head they’re allowed at a divided intersection if neither left nor u turns are prohibited.

    • Joey 15:06 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      U-turns are worst between Westbury and Ponsard, where the street widens. I think 1/3 of all double-parking on Queen-Mary can be traced directly to Real Bagel, just west of Ponsard.

    • DeWolf 19:50 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      I go to that stretch of Queen-Mary every so often because I like to take the metro to Snowdon and do a long walk through NDG and Westmount before heading downtown. It’s a really interesting commercial strip but everything Joey is saying about the way drivers behave is absolutely spot on. It really dampens the mood if you’re on foot.

    • Kate 00:04 on 2024-02-20 Permalink

      DeWolf, is that odd little upstairs courtyard space still operating?

    • DeWolf 14:02 on 2024-02-20 Permalink

      It’s still there, but last I checked all the retail spaces were vacant.

  • Kate 17:59 on 2024-02-18 Permalink | Reply  

    Two hundred and eighty people gave themselves a chilly ducking in the Lachine Canal on Sunday to raise money for the mentally deficient.

    • Blork 18:04 on 2024-02-18 Permalink

      There’s a joke laying right under the surface of that line, but I’m not going to be the one to say it.

    • Kate 18:28 on 2024-02-18 Permalink

      I too was restraining myself.

    • MarcG 18:44 on 2024-02-18 Permalink

      When I see people cold-dipping at Verdun beach I joke that they’re competing for World’s Smallest Penis. Is “chilly ducking” an expression? Also, article contains a photo of a real-life pig in a blanket.

    • Kate 19:09 on 2024-02-18 Permalink

      Is “chilly ducking” an expression?

      It is now.

    • Ian 18:14 on 2024-02-19 Permalink

      It’s like the John Cougar Mellencamp song, “ducking on a chilly dog beneath the Lachine freeze”

  • Kate 10:31 on 2024-02-18 Permalink | Reply  

    The UTILE organization has plans for several new apartment towers for students, in Griffintown and the McGill ghetto, but some residents are not happy although I feel there’s a certain irony in any modern Griffintown dweller complaining about residential construction.

    • DeWolf 11:58 on 2024-02-18 Permalink

      Keep in mind this is a form of social housing: affordable non-profit apartments for students. It’s good for everyone in the long run because students aren’t being gouged and they aren’t competing with everyone else for regular market-rate apartments.

      And yet these projects are being opposed because they’re too “tall” and they “don’t fit in.” The one near McGill is 17 storeys, roughly the same height as the two adjacent buildings. The Griffintown project is 18 floors within spitting distance of a 62-storey tower going up two blocks away.

      The Griffintown opponents are NIMBY hypocrites who expected their condo tower to be the last one ever built. And the architecture professor who is opposed to the McGill development is completely out to lunch, given that the McGill Ghetto is already a big mix of building types and scales. He seems to think that any new development in the area should be no more than a few storeys tall, economics be damned. Better a quaint Victorian for millionaires than high-rise apartments!

      To me, any opposition to these projects is a show of bad faith: it means you care more about some fuzzy idea of neighbourhood character than you do about actually providing affordable housing to people who need it.

      Luckily, these are considered community housing by law, which means they are exempt from the usual public consultation and referendum process. Imagine if every well-to-do condo dweller had the right to veto new social housing…

    • bob 15:27 on 2024-02-18 Permalink

      Le projet « nous ramène à un urbanisme moderne des années 1960 : conçu et construit sans égard pour un quartier et son histoire »,

      Isn’t “conçu et construit sans égard pour un quartier et son histoire” the very motto of Griffintown?

    • Nicholas 18:32 on 2024-02-18 Permalink

      Pulling up the ladder after you’ve climbed it: I’m not going to say whom it applies to, but.

  • Kate 10:25 on 2024-02-18 Permalink | Reply  

    Normal redistribution of riding boundaries meant Montreal island was likely to lose one riding before the next provincial election, but two MNAs – one CAQ, one PQ – want Montreal to lose two. They say we have too much representation in the National Assembly.

    Now where did I put my irony pills?

    • Ian 11:40 on 2024-02-18 Permalink

      Well I guess that’s the question, do you want proportional representation? The CAQ and PQ sure don’t. Legault couldn’t even win a seat in his hometown.

      Since the CAQ and PQ power base is in the sticks it only makes sense that they would want to ensure that just because according to 2023 estimates metropolitan Montreal with 4.3 million people has half of of the province’s 8.8 million population it shouldn’t have a half the political power.

      The CAQ won 72% of the seats in the 2022 election, with only 41% of the popular vote. TThere are 125 seats in Quebec, only 27 in Montreal. Soon to be 26, or maybe 25.
      As Philippe Fournier said on Twitter in 2022, “On pourrait fusionner les comtés voisins de Gaspé et Bonaventure, et ce nouveau comté aurait encore moins d’habitants que 24 circonscriptions du grand Montréal.”

      Why would you want some Plateaunian foreigner with some ridiculous name like William Johnson who doesn’t even speak French at home to have the same voting power as Liam Blackburn of Jonquière, a “real” Québecois? /s

      “Lors d’un débat local à Trois-Rivières, Jean Boulet a lancé que « 80 % des immigrants s’en vont à Montréal, ne travaillent pas, ne parlent pas français ou n’adhèrent pas aux valeurs de la société québécoise ».” https://lactualite.com/politique/la-caq-na-pas-besoin-de-montreal/

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