Updates from May, 2024 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Kate 22:06 on 2024-05-11 Permalink | Reply  

    Inter Miami defeated CF Montreal Saturday evening 3‑2. Lionel Messi didn’t score any goals.

    • Kate 16:49 on 2024-05-11 Permalink  

      A Pro-Palestinian demonstration was held Saturday at the consulate of Israel, to mark the 76th anniversary of the Nakba.

      • Kate 14:29 on 2024-05-11 Permalink | Reply  

        The ruins of the empty building on St‑Dominique destroyed by fire in March are still lying untouched, making them an eyesore and a hazard in the area.

        • Joey 18:16 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          Why does it take so long to get to the point that the ruins can’t yet be moved because they’re too hot?

      • Kate 11:21 on 2024-05-11 Permalink | Reply  

        Le Devoir compares our metro’s accessibility to those in other cities after revealing that the accessibility program has ground to a halt for lack of money from Quebec.

        Also Saturday, Radio-Canada has a thoughtful piece on public transit being an investment in the future, while politicians treat it as an electoral football.

        • Nicholas 13:19 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          The [Le Devoir] article states “Avec la nouvelle phase de travaux souhaitée par la Société de transport de Montréal (STM) — mais impossible à réaliser sans le financement toujours refusé par Québec ….” This is a lie. It is absolutely possible to make more stations accessible without provincial funding. The city, agglo or region could contribute more money (by cutting other priorities or raising taxes), or the STM could cut other services or projects or raise fares. Would this be popular? I doubt it. But why would it be less unpopular with the provincial population as a whole?

          All spending priorities are subject to the political process. If Montreal and environs thinks metro accessibility is a low priority, it will choose not to fund this and instead hope that the most transit-resistant government in generations will fund it instead. That’s a choice it can make, but it is a choice. Whether Quebec should fund this project or not is a great thought experiment, but whether Quebec will fund it is fairly clear, and so we have to decide as a city, island and region if we care enough about people with disabilities and young kids and bikes and elderly family members and so on to put our money where our mouth is so that we can build elevators at like a third of the speed that Toronto is. (The TTC will be done in under two years, and did its whole system in about 20, with very little provincial funding.) Having had this argument before elsewhere, I know what our choice is going to be.

        • Kate 14:26 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          What would the city have to sacrifice to get this done?

        • Nicholas 18:21 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          Their plan and history is something like two to 2.5 stations a year. It’s hard to get exact costs because each station varies in complexity and they also usually do repairs at the same time, but I think $50 million a year is fair. The city budget is $6,990 million and the ten year infrastructure budget is $2,390 million a year, making elevators 0.5% or the combined budget. If we could raise fares an extra 1% just on the STM network or less overall (one-time, permanent increase until the program is done), that would cover about a third of that. If we could get our costs down to Spanish or Italian or German construction costs for elevator retrofits, we could cut the price in half. And there are lots of other priorities that could have a bit shaved off here or there to round out the costs. It’s not nothing, but it’s not going to bust the budget.

          The dirty little secret is that we expect the province to pay, so if we pay ourselves then they won’t, so we have to not pay so we can keep begging them to. It’s a political ploy that’s well worn by every mayor and council since this program started, and believed by lots of people. So we can shake our fists at Quebec harder rather than open our wallets.

      • Kate 09:32 on 2024-05-11 Permalink | Reply  

        Following the acceptance of bulb‑outs at some intersections, Verdun borough is experimenting with pastilles to slow drivers down at corners and make crossing the street safer for pedestrians.

        I first spotted this article on X where someone was deriding the quote from Robert Poëti, described here as “ex-ministre des Transports et porte-parole des concessionnaires automobiles,” who says the pastilles would “contaminate traffic space.” I take that as a positive.

        • Ian 09:38 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          Probably a lot less expensive to install than bulb-outs, too. Anything that slows down turns is a good idea.

        • MarcG 09:53 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          The pastilles themselves work well, but what’s the deal with not being able to stick poles in things and have them stay there? You can see in the photo that at least 2 of them are missing and this photo was taken on a good day. They did another rework one block over and it’s the same deal but one of the critical ones has a big orange cone as a semi-permanent placeholder. Imagine you bought something this shoddy for your home, you would send that shit back ASAP. Also the funky paint on the sidewalk: We have standards for a reason, this is not a place to get creative. It reminds me of this unusual sign, is it a pedestrian crossing or not? Where are the hatched yellow lines on the road and the “priorité au pietons” sign? People need to be able to read the streets quickly and easily, any second given to “what the fuck does that mean?” is dangerous.

        • DavidH 11:15 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          @MarcG, it looks a bit like the PlazaSt-Hubert’s voie partagée sign (which almost no motorist respects). Except I doubt that was the intent in the example you posted.

        • DavidH 11:17 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

        • DeWolf 11:39 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          @MarcG, you’re absolutely right that signage and road markings are weirdly inconsistent. But in this case, there’s a four-way stop, so the priorité aux piétons sign would be redundant. And I believe that decorative crossings are allowed at stop signs. Sometimes they’re made of bricks or paving stones, but I’m pretty sure I’ve seen painted ones like this, if not here than in other cities.

          Also, drivers instinctively slow down in visually complex environments. Here’s an example of the research into that:


          It’s one reason why many European cities tend to strip their streets of all but the necessary signage and instead focus on textured paving, bulb-outs, etc. – physical interventions that make the landscape busy in a general way that slows drivers down. Signage does the opposite: it overwhelms drivers by demanding their specific attention, which has the paradoxical effect of leading them to ignore or overlook things.

          Unfortunately, we’ve taken a lot of half-measures in terms of redesigning streets to make them safer, and accompanied them with an overabundance of signage to compensate, which isn’t the best way forward.

        • MarcG 11:58 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          @DeWolf: For the “priorité aux piétons” comment I was referring to the odd yield/crossing I linked to, not the intersection. Thanks for the research.

        • Kevin 13:13 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          I saw pastilles last year somewhere I was walking around and i liked them. (Although I cannot remember where it was. Maybe Gananoque?)

          As for the bollards, they are made out of cheap plastic and rip easily so as to minimize damage if hit.

        • Ephraim 14:34 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          Seriously, why can’t we just have raised crosswalks? Elevated, like a speed bump. Is that so hard to do? It makes everyone slow down at the intersection and has TWO bonuses… first of all, the cyclists keep out of the crosswalk because it’s not at street level and more importantly, helps people who are using mobility aides and wheelchairs, because there isn’t a DIP. And in Montreal, that would mean that there wasn’t a giant puddle in the corner.

          See https://media.blogto.com/articles/20220120-raised-crosswalks-toronto.jpg?w=2048&cmd=resize_then_crop&height=1365&quality=70 for an example

        • Uatu 15:12 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          There’s raised crosswalks on Riverside drive in St. Lambert. Mostly because there’s a lot of schools on one side and Seaway park is across street. They work very well at slowing traffic and the neighborhood is full of $$$ so maintenance etc. is not a problem (also probably why they were installed in the first place).

        • Joey 15:39 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          @Ephraim there’s a version of raised sidewalks at the corner of Dufferin and Queen-Mary (north/south only; in fact I think it’s just the northern side of the intersection). IIRC there’s no indication or anything, even painted lines, so drivers who are not aware of the sudden bump will probably hit it too fast and nick the underside of their front end.

        • Ian 08:37 on 2024-05-12 Permalink

          There are speed bumps on my street that have to be rdone every couple of years because the snowplows mess them up. Potholes in the speedbumps is a very Montreal thing though, there is some comic charm to it.

        • Blork 11:28 on 2024-05-13 Permalink

          The pastilles are probably a good idea, but I can’t look at them and not imagine cyclists busting their wheels when they crash into them (especially when riding at night). Maybe that doesn’t happen, but I can’t get the vision of it out of my head when I look at the picture.

        • Kate 14:55 on 2024-05-13 Permalink

          Maybe they could have a row of LEDs around the edges?

      • Kate 09:26 on 2024-05-11 Permalink | Reply  

        Montreal graphic novelist Michel Rabagliati has had a stamp issued in his honour alongside four other Canadians working in the genre.

        • Meezly 10:31 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          Very cool!

        • Ian 08:38 on 2024-05-12 Permalink

          Well-deserved, and also congrats to Seth, Chester Brown, and the Tamaki sisters.

      • Kate 09:24 on 2024-05-11 Permalink | Reply  

        Lots of reports and photos Saturday morning of the aurora borealis sparked by solar activity at the peak of its 11‑year cycle.

        • MarcG 09:57 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          Went to take a look last night and saw very light red and green streaks in the sky. A curious crowd gathered in the park down by the river in Verdun. These celestial events has an interesting vibe to them. There’s nothing for sale and the entertainment is outside humanity.

        • MarcG 10:11 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          Here’s a photo without enhancement. It looks a bit more colourful than it did with the naked eye.

        • Kate 10:27 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          I couldn’t see a damn thing from around here – too much street and alley lighting.

        • GC 23:01 on 2024-05-14 Permalink

          I happened to be in the suburbs of Ottawa and it was so so cloudy… I didn’t really think I was missing much in my light-polluted part of the Plateau, but I saw lots of photos from people on social media who live in Park Ex or Verdun or whatever.

      • Kate 09:17 on 2024-05-11 Permalink | Reply  

        A video capture of a cyclist colliding with a child crossing Jeanne‑Mance to board a school bus in the Plateau has sparked a flurry of critical comment and well‑intentioned advice. I’ve seen the bike path layout criticized, the kid’s parents criticized, and inevitably the incident used as a premise to criticize cyclists generally for being negligent users of the streets.

        The kid wasn’t injured and the cops haven’t laid any charges, but are investigating.

        Saturday, CBC reports that the cyclist was fined $131 for not stopping for a school bus.

        • walkerp 10:27 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          A strong reminder to all of us on bikes that we have to adjust our modes now that bike-riding is finally being respected. As the city and infrastructure are being developed to create legitimate bike routes, we have to start behaving and following the rules that go with that.

        • Meezly 10:46 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          I’m kinda continuing from the older post about this incident. I regularly bike that stretch of Jeanne-Mance and often encounter the school bus, so am aware that it stops in front of several homes. Even as a cyclist who often makes Idaho stops at stop signs, I do actually stop when the school bus stop lights come out.

          It’s fairly common sense if you’re the kind of cyclist who pays any attention to your surroundings. After all, bikes do share the same rules of the road as vehicles. I do admit that if I don’t see any kids on my side, I’ll sometimes continue on very slowly. But that woman on the BIXI who plowed into that girl was going fast. I can’t imagine what the outcome would be if she was on an e-Bixi. She seemed to be one of those oblivious and ignorant cyclists, who give cyclists a bad rap.

          There’s a safety cycling program for kids that participate with elementary schools in Montreal! You have to make a request with the teacher to see if this is possible. At my kid’s school there were at least two classes that were participating, and I asked her if it’d be possible for my kid’s class this year. Unfortunately, she said she wouldn’t have time 🙁

        • Ian 11:43 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          They had a bike rodeo at my kid’s school aa couple of years running, back when it was still the CSDM.

        • Tim S. 11:46 on 2024-05-11 Permalink

          My elementary school had a bike safety lesson. I was in French immersion, so we watched a dubbed video of Bill Cosby and had a very joually-police sergeant come in and talk to us. All grade one anglo me got out of it was some bizarre arm waving.

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