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  1. Technodôme (2000)

    Welcome to the Technodome Another high roller gambling on Montreal's future is Abraham Reichmann, nephew of the once mighty Reichmann brothers of urban development infamy (the Toronto-based family is still reeling from losses of the early '90s and the multi-billion-dollar failure of their Canary Wharf project in London's docklands). If Reichmann has his way with us, Montreal will soon be host to what he likes to call, "the world's largest, and single-most technologically advanced indoor attraction, ever." The upstart Reichmann has been shopping his Technodome project around from city to city for nearly a decade. This past summer, Technodome looked as if it might go to Toronto. Now, the young Reichmann has turned what Dinu Bumbaru of Heritage Montreal calls his "very harsh and determined publicity campaign" on Montreal. "We believe, within three to four years," Reichmann claims, "Montreal will emerge as a premier tourist and entertainment destination not only in North America but in the world." The Technodome project has already secured a partnership with the SGF in Montreal by which $50 million will be "borrowed" from Quebec taxpayers. Though land deals have once again stalled, Bickerdyke shipping pier (at the west end of the port) has been chosen as the location for Technodome--neatly representing the shift of an economy of production to one of consumption. Features: Simply put, Technodome takes Disney's concept of the Edenic themepark as a self-contained mini-universe, and plunks it into the middle of Montreal. Its proposed 200-million-square-foot dome would shelter several biospheres, making it possible, according to Duthel, for a patron to go white-water rafting and downhill skiing in the same visit (thus resolving our harsh climate problem). In addition to "nature" attractions, it will feature disaster rides, IMAX theatres, a 125,000-capacity sports and music arena and massive indoor themed zones similar to the "Lands" at the Disney parks. http://www.montrealmirror.com/ARCHIVES/2000/022400/cover.html
  2. La succursale va fermer. C'est incroyable. On dirait presque un canular. Perte immense pour le patrimoine de Montréal... *** Royal Bank abandons historic 360 St. Jacques building June 23, 2010. 1:57 pm • Section: Metropolitan News The Royal Bank of Canada is closing its historic branch in Old Montreal, in what was once the tallest building in the British Empire and the bank’s head office. The image above, from Google Earth, shows the building (in the middle, foreground) and the skyscrapers that followed it. The bank has more on the history of the Montreal landmark here and here. And check out this city of Montreal history. This story appeared in the Granby Leader-Times on March 4, 1927: http://blogs.montrealgazette.com/2010/06/23/royal-bank-abandons-historic-360-st-jacques-building/
  3. Stop working for free

    Very interesting opinion on the current state employment trend http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2013/jun/05/digital-economy-work-for-free Merci au site MTLCity pour cette suggestion: http://w5.montreal.com/mtlweblog/?p=27514&utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter
  4. Discard your stereotypes: people in the U.S. own fewer passenger vehicles on average than in almost all other developed nations. Americans love cars. We pioneered their mass production, designed iconic autos from the Model T to the Deville to the Corvette, and are a major exporter as well as importer. It's practically a part of the American national identity. But it turns out, according to a new paper from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace on worldwide car usage, that American per capita car ownership rates are actually among the lowest in the developed world. The U.S. is ranked 25th in world by number of passenger cars per person, just above Ireland and just below Bahrain. There are 439 cars here for every thousand Americans, meaning a little more than two people for every car. That number is higher in nearly all of Western Europe -- the U.K., Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Belgium, etc. -- as well as in Japan, Australia, and New Zealand. It's higher in crisis-wracked Iceland and Greece. Italians and New Zealanders have nearly 50 percent more cars per capita than does the U.S. The highest rate in the world is casino-riddled Mediterranean city-state Monaco, with 771 cars per thousand citizens. America actually starts to look unusually auto-poor when cars per capita is charted against household consumption per capita, which the Carnegie paper explains are two typically correlated variables. That is, countries where household spend more money on average tend to also own more cars. The countries on the right side of the line are where people own fewer cars than you might expect. The developed countries on that side of the graph include the super-dense Asian city states (Macao, Singapore, Hong Kong) where car ownership is tightly regulated to keep traffic down, and the United States. The countries far to the left of the line own more cars than expected: car-crazy Italy, for example, and sparsely populated Iceland. I found this really surprising -- I'd always associated the U.S. closely with car culture, an impression anecdotally enforced by my interactions with non-Americans. So what explains the American outlier? The Carnegie paper explains that car ownership rates are closely tied to the size of the middle class. In fact, the paper actually measures car ownership rates for the specific purpose of using that number to predict middle class size. Comparing the middle class across countries can be extraordinarily difficult; someone who counts as middle class in one country could be poor or rich in another. Americans are buying fewer cars -- is it possible that this is another sign of a declining American middle class? Even if Americans are on average richer than Europeans, after all, U.S. income inequality is also much higher. According to the Carnegie paper, about 9.6 of Americans' cars are luxury cars, an unusually high number; but it unhelpfully defines "luxury" as "Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Lexus" (no Cadillacs?), which may help to explain why Germany's "luxury car" rate is 26.6 percent. Still, it's also possible that the answer has less to do with Americans adhering to Carnegie's thesis about car ownership predicting middle class size and more to do with other, particularly American factors. Young Americans are spending less of their money on cars, as Jordan Weissmann explained, as they get driver's licences at lower rates and spend more of their money on, say, high-tech smart phones. Amazingly, Americans still manage to suck up far, far more energy per person than do the people in those Western European nations with so many more cars per capita. Our oil usage per capita is about twice what it is in Western Europe, and here's our overall energy usage: Whatever the reason for America's comparatively low car ownership rate, it may be time to update our stereotypes. The most car-obsessed place in the world isn't the nation of Detroit and Ford and Cadillac. It's Western Europe, the land of Peugeot and Smart Cars and Ferrari, where cars are most common. L'article avec les graphiques mentionnés plus haut: http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2012/08/its-official-western-europeans-have-more-cars-per-person-than-americans/261108/ L'étude: http://www.carnegieendowment.org/2012/07/23/in-search-of-global-middle-class-new-index/cyo2
  5. Where was this photo taken?

    Picture in question: From what I can determine, the church in the middle of the picture is the one at the corner of Saint-Jacques and Vinet in st henri, and the slope on the side is where the Ville-Marie highway is now. Based on the size of that church and its position, I say is between staint-jacques and notre-dame around Guy street. Things I hope you guys can help with, the church on the left, with the single steeple, where is/was it? The building on the right, in the background, with all the chimneys, what is it, it looks really familiar, I'm sure someone will recognize it. And finally, does anyone have a map of the rail lines in the general area around the turn of the century, there is a platform on the extreme right in the middle, and knowing where they were would help greatly. Thanks for the help in advance, I love trying to figure these old ones out.
  6. Are people that desperate?

    My younger brother walking downtown and some schmuck rips off his headphones, right off his head! If you are asking what headphones, its one of those higher end Dr Dre ones. Honestly this city is going to the dogs. One thing Harper shouldn't build more prisons, we should just make the laws more insane. You steal, you have your hands cut off. I know we don't live in the Middle East, but maybe we do need some of their crazy ass laws, to keep people in check here.
  7. La citadelle d'Alep domine la ville, c'est un palais royal construit en 1230 et en partie détruit par les Mongols. Elle est entourée d'un profond (20 m) et large (30 m) fossé, creusé au xiie siècle. L'une des caractéristiques de la citadelle est son imposante entrée fortifiée, accessible par un pont. Cette entrée a été construite par les Mamelouks au xvie siècle. À l'intérieur, une succession de cinq virages à angle droit et trois imposantes portes en acier, dont certaines possèdent des linteaux sculptés, opposaient autant d'obstacles à un assaut. Il faut visiter en particulier la salle d'armes, la salle byzantine et la salle du trône dont le plafond de bois décoré a été restauré. Il y a une vue depuis l'enceinte. The Citadel of Aleppo (Arabic: قلعة حلب‎) is a large medieval fortified palace in the centre of the old city of Aleppo, northern Syria. It is considered to be one of the oldest and largest castles in the world. Usage of the Citadel hill dates back at least to the middle of the 3rd millennium BC. Subsequently occupied by many civilizations including the Greeks, Byzantines, Ayyubids and Mamluks, the majority of the construction as it stands today is thought to originate from the Ayyubid period. An extensive conservation work has taken place in the 2000s by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture in collaboration with Aleppo Archeological Society. The recently-discovered Temple of the Ancient Storm God, Hadad, dates use of the hill to the middle of the 3rd millennium BC, as referenced in Cuneiform texts from Ebla and Mari.[1] The prophet Abraham is said to have milked his sheep on the citadel hill[2]. After the decline of the Neo-Hittite state centred in Aleppo, the Assyrians dominated the area (4-8th century BC), followed by the Neo-Babylonians and the Persians (539-333)[3]. [edit] Seleucid After Aleppo was taken by the armies of Alexander the Great, Aleppo was ruled by Seleucus I Nicator, who undertook the revival of the city under the name Beroia. Medieval Arab historians say that the history of the citadel as a fortified acropolis began under Nikator[2]. In some areas of the citadel there are up to two meters of remains of Hellenistic settlement. A colonnaded street led up to the citadel hill from the west, where the souk area of Aleppo still retains the Hellenistic grid street plan.[4] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Citadel_of_Aleppo
  8. Obviously this issue has yet to be released, but has anyone seen this yet? This seems like a Montreal bashing field day. http://www2.macleans.ca/2009/07/08/macleans-covers-gallery/mac_cover_091109/ Calling Montreal a disgrace is a very strong statement, as while they sit in their Toronto office buildings, their city is suffering from many more homicides as well as a massive polarization of wealth, as the middle class drains itself to the far reaches of the GTA. I'm not saying that Montreal doesn't have its problems, but this seems to be utterly gratuitous, on the part of those who seem to love to see us fail.
  9. A stunning painting of a possible future (or present depending on how you look at it)… walled cities of techno-utopia surrounded by the rest of the world living in the middle ages. Hi-Res: http://www.radoxist.com/picture/54 Low-Res:
  10. Shoes

    I know this is a weird topic but hey, it was bound to happen. At Cours Mont Royal, there is a new shoe store that opened up called Minelli from France. Its their first North American store, but it seems like its their first store in the Americas. If your looking for shoes, go check it out. The prices are reasonable (by my standards). I got a pair good quality leather shoes, that also have a leather sole and that are made in Portugal. Some other ones are made in Spain, Italy and maybe in France. The size range is from 40 to 45 (no half sizes). If I heard the sales person correctly, each size only gets 6 pairs. Honestly we finally have a middle market. No more looking at Aldo or Harry Rosen for shoes. :goodvibes:
  11. (Courtesy of The Globe and Mail) I have a feeling many women will be happy with this news.
  12. http://abcnews.go.com/2020/Stossel/story?id=7055599&page=1 Video clip from 20/20 at link as well.
  13. Middle-class communities disappearing Big increase in poor neighbourhoods in Toronto and more rich districts, according to U of T study February 08, 2009 Daniel Dale STAFF REPORTER "PRIMO PIZZA," the sign reads. "SINCE 1965." Like the store's walls, it is green and white and red, the colours of the Italian flag, and, on the left, there is a cartoonishly mustachioed man carrying a pepperoni pie above his head. This could be any Italian-owned pizza joint in the city. It was indeed Italian-owned until last year. Then a man named Rocky sold it to a man named Abdul. Abdul Malik, a 43-year-old Indian immigrant, kept its name and its oven and its sauce and its dough. He made just one addition to the top right corner of the sign, easy to miss if you're darting in from the cold, above the shop's phone number. "Halal 100%." "Some people, when they see the sign `halal,' they don't come," said Malik, who also drives a taxi. "We're losing some customers. But we're gaining other types of customers." The neighbourhood known to Statistics Canada as Census Tract 354 is changing. A community of 1950s red-brick bungalows, sturdy front-lawn maple trees and long, narrow driveways, it seems the very embodiment of white middle-class suburban Canadiana. But like the rest of Scarborough, it is decreasingly white. And by University of Toronto Professor David Hulchanski's definition, it is no longer middle-class. Later this year, Hulchanski – associate director for research at the U of T's Cities Centre – and a team of researchers will release an update of their 2007 report The Three Cities within Toronto. Their new analysis of data from the 2006 census confirms a trend they found in the first study: the income gap between Toronto's rich areas and poor areas is growing, while its middle-income neighbourhoods are disappearing. Hulchanski's findings, in aggregate, are dramatic. At the micro-level of this individual neighbourhood, however, the impact of relative economic decline is not unlike Malik's change to the pizza shop's sign. Significant, certainly, but subtle. Between 1995 and 2005, the 5,225-person census district, roughly bordered by Lawrence Ave. E. to the north, Knob Hill Park to the south, Brimley Rd. to the west and McCowan Park to the east, gained 1,020 members of visible minority groups. They now comprise more than 55 per cent of the population, up from about a third in the 1990s. Most of the newcomers came to Canada this decade or last from South Asian countries – predominantly India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Like recent immigrants of all types, many of them struggle to make an adequate living. The area's average individual income in 2006 – $29,929 – was 25 per cent lower than the average for Toronto census districts: $40,074. Hulchanski classifies areas 20 per cent or more below the city-wide average as low-income; according to him, this area has been low-income since at least 2000. Yet ask long-time white residents to classify their neighbourhood and they will inevitably call it middle-class. Ask them to describe recent demographic changes and they will think for a moment, then point down the street to a house an Indian family bought from a British couple, or around the corner to another now owned by Sri Lankans. "When we moved in almost 30 years ago – we moved in '79 – there were more Anglo-Saxon people," said Filomena Polidoro, 53. "Now there are more ethnic people. It's more mixed. And it's nice, still nice. We like it." The old-timers' shrugs about its low-income status reflect a key caveat to the discussion of the disappearance of the city's middle-class census tracts: to fall from "middle-income" to "low-income," in relative terms, a neighbourhood need not get significantly poorer. Since the city's high-income neighbourhoods are getting richer, a middle-class neighbourhood that maintains its income level will be relatively poorer. The influx of South Asians has not made this one destitute; it remains largely populated, said Polidoro, by people who work as teachers, nurses, and factory and construction workers, among other unpretentious jobs. But the new arrivals contributed to a decline of about $1,000 in the neighbourhood's inflation-adjusted average individual income between 2000 and 2005. Two local real estate agents said about 70 per cent of people now inquiring about houses in the neighbourhood are South Asian. Many recent buyers, said Coldwell Banker agent Raffi Boghossian, are large extended families who have pooled limited incomes, sometimes "not much more than minimum wage," to acquire property. Local businesses have adjusted accordingly. At Reliable Parts, an appliance parts shop beside Primo Pizza, employee Warren Lastewka has a polite "the price is the price" speech he delivers when cash-strapped customers reared in haggling-friendly countries ask for unadvertised discounts. The Paperback Exchange, a bookstore in the plaza since the 1970s, now stocks elementary educational books with titles like Basic Learning Skills and Parts of Speech near its sci-fi novels. "I'll get a family of Pakistanis in when the teacher says to them, `Your kid's not going to make it if they can't read English.' From now through to June, that's when they usually get the notice," said Joy Ritchie, 64, the mother of owner Troy Ritchie. "I keep those books on the wall there. And I do very good business on that from now to June." Low-income areas sometimes lack proximity to social services and other essential conveniences. This one is served by Scarborough General Hospital, a Royal Bank, a Shoppers Drug Mart, a library and a Price Chopper. "Everything is convenient for us in this area," said Kaushik Maisuria, 28, an India-born auto garage employee who lives with his two uncles and two young cousins. "We can get whatever we want." Including, increasingly, products and services targeted to them, like Malik's halal pizza or the plaza's JD's Market and Halal Meat, where large bags of basmati rice line the aisles and a butcher works out back. Once a Becker's Milk, the location was a standard convenience store until October, when Jaffer Derwish's Afghanistan-born family converted it into a small grocery. In a tough economy, business is slow, said Derwish, 23. So is demand for local real estate. "The market is sort of dead in the area," Boghossian said. Many prospective buyers, he said, "are people with income that is not certain." "Typical Scarborough," said Royal LePage Signature realtor Joan Manuel. "You're not getting multiple offers. And if you do, you're not getting them over (the listed price)." Those people still making offers, however, are drawn to the neighbourhood's increasing ability to meet distinct South Asian needs. About 800 metres from Brimley Rd. is the large new Jame Abu Bakr Siddique mosque, a gleaming white facility whose minarets loom over another halal pizzeria. Prospective buyers have cited the mosque as a key lure to the area, said Manuel. And other attractions abound. Down the street is the bustling Bombay Bazaar grocery store in a Lawrence Ave. plaza so busy people park their cars in the middle of the parking lot, preventing those lucky enough to find spots from backing out. Nearby are a Hindi video rental store-slash-hair salon and a fish market. It is, for some, a sight to behold. "Where there used to be an old mom-and-pop operation," said Joy Ritchie, a touch of wonderment in her voice, "now they're selling saris." http://www.thestar.com/News/GTA/article/584203 Poor neighbourhoods growing across Toronto RENÉ JOHNSTON/TORONTO STAR Newspapers in South Asian languages serve the city's many new immigrants. Toronto's middle class is disappearing. Since 2001, 15 of the city's middle-income neighbourhoods have vanished, according to a yet-to-be released University of Toronto report. The majority became low-income areas, where individual earnings are 20 to 40 per cent below the city average. Hardest hit are the suburbs. Declines in Scarborough and north Etobicoke have continued. Falling income is also affecting parts of Brampton, Mississauga and Durham. In 1970, 86 per cent of 905 neighbourhoods were middle class. In 2005, that number had tumbled to 61 per cent. From 2000 to 2005, the number of city neighbourhoods with very low earnings – more than 40 per cent below the Toronto-area average – grew by almost 50 per cent. Residents in these neighbourhoods live on welfare-level earnings, says U of T researcher David Hulchanski. The report, due out this year, is an update of the groundbreaking 2007 The Three Cities within Toronto report by Hulchanski and a team of university researchers. It analyzed and mapped Statistics Canada census data from 1971 to 2001, finding that not only were middle-class neighbourhoods disappearing, but Toronto was divided into three distinct geographic areas: City 1, which consistently gained income; City 2, which maintained its income but shrunk in size; and City 3, whose residents saw their earnings fall over the 30-year period. Hulchanski says municipal governments are not to blame. "The people of Toronto did not do this to themselves. This is a national trend. What we're showing on these maps is the way federal and provincial policies, as well as the economy, have played out in Toronto's neighbourhoods." He says policies such as universal health care and social assistance helped build the middle class. Cutbacks, including downloading of social services from the province to cities and a lack of affordable housing and job protection, are leading to its destruction. "You didn't talk about McJobs in the 1970s, or even part-time jobs without benefits. Whoever heard of a job that wasn't full-time without benefits?" he asks. "That would be shocking 25 years ago. Now it's normal." Hulchanski's updated study, with another five years of data from the 2006 census, confirms the decline of the middle class and the continued polarization of rich and poor neighbourhoods. From 2001 to 2006, individual incomes in wealthy areas grew 14 per cent, while residents of low-income neighbourhoods made only modest gains. During the 1970s, Toronto was a predominantly middle-class city, with 341 of its 520 census tracts – neighbourhood areas determined by Statistics Canada so that they have roughly 4,000 residents each – in the middle-income category. Poverty was contained in the city's urban core. Thirty years later, it's a city divided. Richer residents live along the Yonge St. corridor, close to services and transit. Individual incomes average almost $90,000 a year. The proliferating poorer communities are located in Toronto's pre-amalgamation suburbs, the middle-class bastion of the 1950s. In 2006 that area included 40 per cent of the city's census tracts. Sixty-one per cent are immigrants. There is little rapid transit and an average income of $26,900. Sandwiched between the two areas is a shrinking City 2, neighbourhoods with static income where the average income is about $35,700. Hulchanski began his research in 2005 with a $1 million grant (spread over five years) from the Social Science Humanities Research Council of Canada. He teamed with St. Christopher House, an omnibus social service agency in the city's west end, to examine how gentrification was changing the neighbourhood. The data was difficult to analyze. Within the 30-year period, census boundaries had changed and some of the information wasn't available electronically. A U of T data analyst took more than a year to get it into shape. By the time Hulchanski began his work, Toronto and the United Way had completed research showing the city's poverty was highest in 13 priority neighbourhoods. "The trend line was clearly there. Researchers saw it and the city's work with the United Way was going on," says Fiona Chapman, manager of social research and analysis for Toronto. "What David's work has done is absolutely confirmed the concerns. And I think why everybody doffs their cap to David is (that) he's been very good at helping the public understand these concerns." BY THE NUMBERS How the income decline affects the outer suburbs $40,074 Average 2005 individual income, all Toronto census districts 61 Percentage of population comprising immigrants in districts where incomes have declined more than 20 per cent since 1970 34 Percentage of population comprising whites in such districts 19 Number of subway stations within 300 metres of such districts, versus 40 for biggest-gaining districts 54 Percentage of 2005-07 homicides in such districts, versus 12 per cent for biggest-gaining districts Source: University of Toronto Cities Centre U of T analysis of census data shows middle class shrinking, especially in Scarborough, Etobicoke February 08, 2009 Patty Winsa STAFF REPORTER http://www.thestar.com/Article/584204 interactive map: http://www3.thestar.com/static/Flash/map_middleclass.html PDF:http://multimedia.thestar.com/acrobat/51/c7/2cc835a5403d8d76478fae97bba0.pdf
  14. Poll Finds Faith in Obama, Mixed With Patience Article Tools Sponsored By By ADAM NAGOURNEY and MARJORIE CONNELLY Published: January 17, 2009 President-elect Barack Obama is riding a powerful wave of optimism into the White House, with Americans confident he can turn the economy around but prepared to give him years to deal with the crush of problems he faces starting Tuesday, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News Poll. The latest on the inauguration of Barack Obama and other news from Washington and around the nation. Join the discussion. While hopes for the new president are extraordinarily high, the poll found, expectations for what Mr. Obama will actually be able to accomplish appear to have been tempered by the scale of the nation’s problems at home and abroad. The findings suggest that Mr. Obama has achieved some success with his effort, which began with his victory speech in Chicago in November, to gird Americans for a slow economic recovery and difficult years ahead after a campaign that generated striking enthusiasm and high hopes for change. Most Americans said they did not expect real progress in improving the economy, reforming the health care system or ending the war in Iraq — three of the central promises of Mr. Obama’s campaign — for at least two years. The poll found that two-thirds of respondents think the recession will last two years or longer. As the nation prepares for a transfer of power and the inauguration of its 44th president, Mr. Obama’s stature with the American public stands in sharp contrast to that of President Bush. Mr. Bush is leaving office with just 22 percent of Americans offering a favorable view of how he handled the eight years of his presidency, a record low, and firmly identified with the economic crisis Mr. Obama is inheriting. More than 80 percent of respondents said the nation was in worse shape today than it was five years ago. By contrast, 79 percent were optimistic about the next four years under Mr. Obama, a level of good will for a new chief executive that exceeds that measured for any of the past five incoming presidents. And it cuts across party lines: 58 percent of the respondents who said they voted for Mr. Obama’s opponent in the general election, Senator John McCain of Arizona, said they were optimistic about the country in an Obama administration. “Obama is not a miracle worker, but I am very optimistic, I really am,” Phyllis Harden, 63, an independent from Easley, S.C., who voted for Mr. Obama, said in an interview after participating in the poll. “It’s going to take a couple of years at least to improve the economy,” Ms. Harden added. “I think anyone who is looking for a 90-day turnaround is delusional.” Politically, Mr. Obama enjoys a strong foundation of support as he enters what is surely to be a tough and challenging period, working with Congress to swiftly pass a huge and complicated economic package. His favorable rating, at 60 percent, is the highest it has been since the Times/CBS News poll began asking about him. Overwhelming majorities say they think that Mr. Obama will be a good president, that he will bring real change to Washington, and that he will make the right decisions on the economy, Iraq, dealing with the war in the Middle East and protecting the country from terrorist attacks. Over 70 percent said they approved of his cabinet selections. What is more, Mr. Obama’s effort to use this interregnum between Election Day and Inauguration Day to present himself as a political moderate (he might use the word “pragmatist”) appears to be working. In this latest poll, 40 percent described the president-elect’s ideology as liberal, a 17-point drop from just before the election. “I think those of us who voted for McCain are going to be a lot happier with Obama than the people who voted for him,” Valerie Schlink, 46, a Republican from Valparaiso, Ind., said in an interview after participating in the poll. “A lot of the things he said he would do, like pulling out the troops in 16 months and giving tax cuts to those who make under $200,000, I think he now sees are going to be a lot tougher than he thought and that the proper thing to do is stay more towards the middle and ease our way into whatever has to be done. “It can’t all be accomplished immediately.” While the public seems prepared to give Mr. Obama time, Americans clearly expect the country to be a different place when he finishes his term at the end of 2012. The poll found that 75 percent expected the economy to be stronger in four years than it is today, and 75 percent said Mr. Obama would succeed in creating a significant number of jobs, while 59 percent said he would cut taxes for the middle class. The survey found that 61 percent of respondents said things would be better in five years; last April, just 39 percent expressed a similar sentiment. The telephone survey of 1,112 adults was conducted Jan. 11-15. It has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points. The poll suggests some of the cross-currents Mr. Obama is navigating as he prepares to take office, and offers some evidence about why he has retooled some of his positions during this period.
  15. USA : Food Riots, Tax Rebellions By 2012.

    USA : Food Riots, Tax Rebellions By 2012...Trend forecaster, renowned for being accurate in the past, says LIVELEAK The man who predicted the 1987 stock market crash and the fall of the Soviet Union is now forecasting revolution in America, food riots and tax rebellions - all within four years, while cautioning that putting food on the table will be a more pressing concern than buying Christmas gifts by 2012. Gerald Celente, the CEO of Trends Research Institute, is renowned for his accuracy in predicting fut More..ure world and economic events, which will send a chill down your spine considering what he told Fox News this week. Celente says that by 2012 America will become an undeveloped nation, that there will be a revolution marked by food riots, squatter rebellions, tax revolts and job marches, and that holidays will be more about obtaining food, not gifts. "We're going to see the end of the retail Christmas....we're going to see a fundamental shift take place....putting food on the table is going to be more important that putting gifts under the Christmas tree," said Celente, adding that the situation would be "worse than the great depression". "America's going to go through a transition the likes of which no one is prepared for," said Celente, noting that people's refusal to acknowledge that America was even in a recession highlights how big a problem denial is in being ready for the true scale of the crisis. Celente, who successfully predicted the 1997 Asian Currency Crisis, the subprime mortgage collapse and the massive devaluation of the U.S. dollar, told UPI in November last year that the following year would be known as "The Panic of 2008," adding that "giants (would) tumble to their deaths," which is exactly what we have witnessed with the collapse of Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns and others. He also said that the dollar would eventually be devalued by as much as 90 per cent. The consequence of what we have seen unfold this year would lead to a lowering in living standards, Celente predicted a year ago, which is also being borne out by plummeting retail sales figures. The prospect of revolution was a concept echoed by a British Ministry of Defence report last year, which predicted that within 30 years, the growing gap between the super rich and the middle class, along with an urban underclass threatening social order would mean, "The world's middle classes might unite, using access to knowledge, resources and skills to shape transnational processes in their own class interest," and that, "The middle classes could become a revolutionary class." In a separate recent interview, Celente went further on the subject of revolution in America. "There will be a revolution in this country," he said. "It’s not going to come yet, but it’s going to come down the line and we’re going to see a third party and this was the catalyst for it: the takeover of Washington, D. C., in broad daylight by Wall Street in this bloodless coup. And it will happen as conditions continue to worsen." "The first thing to do is organize with tax revolts. That’s going to be the big one because people can’t afford to pay more school tax, property tax, any kind of tax. You’re going to start seeing those kinds of protests start to develop." "It’s going to be very bleak. Very sad. And there is going to be a lot of homeless, the likes of which we have never seen before. Tent cities are already sprouting up around the country and we’re going to see many more." "We’re going to start seeing huge areas of vacant real estate and squatters living in them as well. It’s going to be a picture the likes of which Americans are not going to be used to. It’s going to come as a shock and with it, there’s going to be a lot of crime. And the crime is going to be a lot worse than it was before because in the last 1929 Depression, people’s minds weren’t wrecked on all these modern drugs – over-the-counter drugs, or crystal meth or whatever it might be. So, you have a huge underclass of very desperate people with their minds chemically blown beyond anybody’s comprehension."
  16. Scraping the Sky, and Then Some

    Scraping the Sky, and Then Some Renderings from left, Eka/Civicarts; Prnewsfoto, via Skidmore, Owings & Merrill Llp; Foster + Partners; John Portman & Associates; Dbox/Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, via Associated Press; Weber Shandwick, via Bloomberg News Among many new skyscrapers being planned are, from left, the Mubarak al-Kabir tower in Kuwait, Burj Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, Russia Tower in Moscow, Incheon Tower in South Korea, the Freedom Tower in New York, and the Chicago Spire. By AMY CORTESE Published: June 15, 2008 THE world’s population is expected to climb to nine billion by the middle of the century, from six and a half billion today, according to the United Nations, and a staggering number of those people are likely to be living in big cities. A pressing question for developers and urban planners is how to accommodate the growing urban masses, especially in developing countries of Asia and Africa. But one point is clear: The skyscraper will play a central role. Nearly seven years after the collapse of the World Trade Center in New York portended a pullback from cloud-grazing construction, the world is in the midst of a huge wave of tall building construction, both in number and in size. Some 36 buildings rise more than 300 meters, or roughly 1,000 feet, the threshold generally used to define “supertall” buildings, according to the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, a nonprofit organization based at the Illinois Institute of Technology. An additional 69 supertalls are under construction, the council estimates. Some of the most ambitious developments are in the petro-fueled economies of the Middle East and Russia. Among the most anticipated is the $1 billion Burj Dubai, a massive tower being developed by Emaar Properties in the United Arab Emirates. Although it is not yet complete, the tower has already surpassed the current record holder: Taipei 101 in Taiwan. The final height has been a closely guarded secret, though the Burj Dubai’s 160-plus floors and spire are expected to reach more than 2,600 feet into the sky when it is completed next year, nearly 1,000 feet more than Taipei 101, which was completed in 2004. To put it in perspective, that’s almost an entire Chrysler Building higher. Not to be outdone, the Saudi Arabian multibillionaire Prince al-Walid bin Talal recently unveiled plans for a mile-high tower near the Red Sea port of Jeddah that, if built, would be twice the height of the Burj Dubai. “It is the modern equivalent of New York in the 1920s,” said David Scott, a principal at Arup, an engineering firm, and the chairman of the Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat. A three-part exhibition in Manhattan at the Skyscraper Museum — “Future City: 20|21” — explores this theme by comparing New York in the 1920s and ’30s, when audacious skyscrapers rose up and captured the public’s imagination, with its modern-day peers in Asia, namely Hong Kong and Shanghai. “New York Modern,” the first leg of the exhibit, concludes later this month, and will be followed by “Vertical Cities: Hong Kong|New York.” An examination of Shanghai is planned for next year. As the show suggests, the center of gravity today has shifted from North America and Europe to Asia and the Middle East, where supertalls are rising at a frenetic pace. (In Dubai, the construction crane is jokingly called the national bird.) Supertalls are also going up in countries like India, Kazakhstan and Brazil. The trend, said Carol Willis, an urban historian and director of the Skyscraper Museum, reflects the expanding economies of those regions and their desire to compete for international status and business. In contrast, she says that large developments in New York and other Western cities these days are likely to encounter public opposition — as evidenced by initial public reaction to Forrest City Ratner’s plan for the 22-acre Atlantic Yards in Brooklyn, and Jean Nouvel’s soaring Midtown Manhattan tower, commissioned by Hines, an international real estate developer. And tighter credit in the United States has developers increasingly looking at emerging markets. “People are looking at where else they can put their money to work,” said Jeff Cushman, executive managing director of Cushman & Wakefield, the real estate services firm. The newest skyscrapers are breaking old molds. In the United States, the tallest buildings have tended to be office towers, but in Asia and the Middle East, the towers now going up are often residential or mixed-use buildings, with developers selling off residential units to generate cash flow. The new towers are also likely to be built from concrete or composite materials rather than traditional steel and to incorporate so-called green design features. In many cases, they serve as a focal point for larger-scale master plans. The Burj, for example, is at the center of a $20 billion, 500-acre development of downtown Dubai. Residential units in the Burj are selling for as high as $3,500 a square foot. The tower’s presence has already increased the value of nearby properties by as much as 60 percent, according to Emaar. To get a sense of the pace of change, the Council on Tall Buildings has projected what will be the tallest 20 buildings in 2020, measured by height from sidewalk to their architectural top. (Its researchers included only buildings that have developers and financing and have moved beyond the concept phase, but there is no certainty that they will be built, especially given the current economic downturn. The list does not include developments that are being planned but kept under wraps, like the Saudi mile-high tower.) Icons like the Empire State Building in New York and the Sears Tower in Chicago, which have long been enshrined among the tallest buildings in the world, are bumped from the list. The Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, currently just behind Taipei 101, fall to 20th place. Only two towers in the United States make the list. At 2,000 feet and 150 stories, the Chicago Spire, a twisting residential tower designed by Santiago Calatrava that broke ground last summer, ranks sixth on the list. It is being developed by the Shelbourne Development Group, a developer based in Dublin that took over the project from Fordham Development. One World Trade Center in New York, also known as the Freedom Tower, from Silverstein Properties and designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, comes in at No. 11, at a symbolic 1,776 feet. By that time, the fruits of other urban-planning ideas may emerge. At the World Science Festival last month, a session titled “Future Cities” explored ideas like vertical urban farms growing local produce and zero-carbon mini cars that can nest like airport luggage carts when not in use. http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/15/realestate/commercial/15sqft.html?_r=1&ref=world&oref=slogin
  17. Place Ville Marie

    For some reason yesterday I was thinking about what if PVM was one or two buildings it would be one of the tallest buildings on the planet, if the city did not have height restrictions. Seeing PVM is like 4 towers + the middle connecting everything together, just to make one. Each tower has 46 floors (188 meters). It would be like 230 floors (with the middle part connecting everything). If it was like 1 tower it be 940 meters. It would be bigger than both: Petronas Tower put together (though it would still have about 1/2 the amount of sq.ft). If it was two towers each one would be like 470 meters and it if was divided into 3 towers smaller towers of 313 meters. Something to think about.