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  1. UrbMtl

    Gare Viger

    10 décembre 2013 Merci à MTLskyline pour cette découverte : http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=146803&page=120
  2. Exclusive Business Class Travel Between Toronto and Montreal MONTREAL, Feb. 28, 2017 /CNW Telbec/ - Ufly, a new business class travel experience, announced today that it will sell exclusive flights between the Billy Bishop and Saint-Hubert airports from Monday to Friday, at a frequency of two round trips daily. Offering numerous advantages such as online bookings at a fixed rate, last minute boarding in addition to quick and easy access to aircrafts, Ufly and Pascan Aviation are every business traveler's dream. An accessible, exclusive and efficient service Ideal for frequent business flyers, Ufly truly demonstrates a full executive treatment: comfortable, exclusive and luxurious. Thanks to its unprecedented service offering, Ufly members can take advantage of a VIP lounge, a dedicated phone reservation line, a mobile application, and free parking near the priority security checkpoint and check-in. As a high-end luxury service provider, Ufly sells seats on private nine-seater Pilatus PC 12 planes, the safest on the market, equipped with comfortable, large leather seats that are operated by Pascan Aviation. Available on a member-only basis, Ufly proposes several membership types to meet every travelers' corporate budget allowances. Furthermore, ticket prices do not fluctuate throughout the year, allowing users to benefit from fixed rates that include snacks and beverages and an unlimited number of flights! For more information, go to uFly. About Ufly Launched in February 2017, Ufly sells tickets for Pascan Aviation between Saint-Hubert airport and Billy Bishop airport in Toronto, as well as between Saint-Hubert airport and Québec City, Val-d'Or and Bagotville. Ufly is primarily designed for business professionals and offers preferential access to planes operated by Pascan Aviation. The service is designed to dramatically reducing airport wait times. Members have access to an unlimited number of flights at a fixed rate. Ufly plans to offer more routes in the upcoming year. For more information, go to uFly.
  3. Source: Bloomberg Quebec’s unemployment rate fell to the lowest on record last month while Alberta’s surged to a two-decade high, underlining the the swing in Canada’s economic momentum through the recovery from an energy crash. Joblessness in the mostly French-speaking province fell to 6.2 percent in November from 6.8 percent in October, and in Alberta it climbed to 9 percent. The national jobless rate declined to 6.8 percent from 7 percent, Statistics Canada said Friday from Ottawa. “I’m stunned -- it’s a banner year” for Quebec, said Sebastien Lavoie, assistant chief economist at Laurentian Bank Securities in Montreal. He linked good times to a construction boom in his hometown, a low dollar boosting service industries and business confidence aided by provincial government budget surpluses. The movement of jobs from the western oil patch to central Canada’s service and factory hubs meshed with Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz’s view that non-energy companies will help the world’s 10th largest economy recover over the next few years. Poloz said this week he would only cut his 0.5 percent benchmark interest rate if there was another shock like the oil crash. His next rate decision is Wednesday. “Quebec is within a whisker of posting the lowest unemployment rate in the country, something that we haven’t seen in the 40 years of available data,” said Doug Porter, chief economist at BMO Capital Markets in Toronto. The job report “strengthens the view that the Bank of Canada will be perfectly happy staying on the sidelines.” Quebec is tied more to manufacturers like Canam Group Inc. and Montreal-based software makers, who benefit from Canada’s weaker dollar and a growing U.S. economy. South of the border, payrolls increased by 178,000 jobs, the Labor Department said, bringing the unemployment rate down to a nine-year low of 4.6 percent. The province added 8,500 jobs in November and over the past 12 months the number of unemployed people has dropped by 17 percent. It wasn’t all good news: part of the reason the jobless rate fell was 20,300 dropped out of the labor force, the most since since December 2014. Lavoie at Laurentian Bank said it would be “extremely surprising” for Quebec to make further major gains in the job market over the next year. The figures have yet to reflect some announced cutbacks at Bombardier Inc. that haven’t happened yet, and the U.S. might be about to get tough on Quebec’s large softwood lumber industry. “There are also growing uncertainties linked to trade,” he said. “There will be duties on lumber, so that’s not going to help future job creation.” The mixed pattern also showed up in the national figures. Employment climbed by 10,700 in November as 27,600 left the labor force. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg News projected the jobless rate would be unchanged and employment would decline by 15,000.
  4. Revitalizing Calgary's core: Some possibilities for rebirth 'Calgary has reinvented itself before ... from a ranching/agriculture-based economy to oil and gas' By Richard White, CBC News Posted: Jun 17, 2016 While it is shocking that Calgary's downtown skyscraper vacancy rate skyrocketed to 20 per cent at the end of March, and that it could soon surpass the vacancy record of 22 per cent set in 1983 (twice what it was a year ago), we should keep some perspective. These numbers are not unheard of in major corporate headquarter cities. Back in the 1970s, New York City was in decline. By the mid-70s, the city came close to bankruptcy and its office vacancy rate hit 20 per cent. In 1993, Toronto's downtown office vacancy rate hit 20.4 per cent. Vancouver's rose to 17.4 per cent in 2004. And these may not even be records, as data only goes back to 1990 for those cities. Today, New York City, Toronto and Vancouver's downtowns are booming. All downtowns go through periods of growth, decline and rebirth. Montreal's decline and rebirth In the '60s, the case could still be made Montreal was Canada's business capital. Its downtown was a major office headquarters for Quebec's natural resource industry as well as a thriving financial industry, including the head offices of the Bank of Montreal, Royal Bank of Canada and insurance giant Sun Life. In 1962, when the Place Ville Marie office designed by iconic architects I.M. Pei and Henry N. Cobb opened, it symbolized Montreal's arrival as a world-class city. This was further reinforced with the hosting of Expo '67, the arrival of Montreal Expos baseball team in 1969, and the 1976 Olympics. However, the '70s brought the threat of separation, which prompted many corporate headquarters and their executives to move to Toronto. By 1971, Toronto's population surpassed Montreal's. The 1976 Montreal Olympics, the most expensive in history, plunged the city into a legacy of debt and decline for decades. Today, Montreal has reinvented itself as an international tourist destination and a major player in the gaming and music industries. New York's return from the brink In 1975, New York City was on the brink of bankruptcy. The gradual economic and social decay set in during the '60s. The city's subway system was regarded as unsafe due to crime and frequent mechanical breakdowns. Central Park was the site of numerous muggings and rapes; homeless persons and drug dealers occupied boarded-up and abandoned buildings. Times Square became an ugly, seedy place dominated by crime, drugs and prostitution. Today, New York City is back as one of the world's most successful cities, economically and culturally, and Times Square is again one of the world's most popular urban tourist attractions. Calgary's future Perhaps Calgary has already begun to reinvent itself. Despite the growing vacancy rate downtown, the CBRE's First Quarter 2016 Report says, "Not all commercial real estate in the city has been affected, though. Suburban office space held steady from the last quarter, and the industrial real estate market is still robust because it's not tied to oil and gas." Indeed, Calgary has become one of North America's largest inland port cities, including two state-of-the art intermodal rail operations. Calgary is now the distribution headquarters for Western Canada, a position once held by Winnipeg. And so Calgary's industrial sectors employ more people than the energy sector. Calgary Economic Development is working with the real estate community to implement a "Head Office/Downtown Office Plan" with three action items. One idea is the repurposing of smaller older office spaces as incubators and innovation hubs to attract millennials and/or entrepreneurs. A good example of this is in West Hillhurst, where Arlene Dickenson has converted an old office building at the corner of Memorial Drive and Kensington Road that was once home to an engineering firm into District Ventures, home to several startup packaged goods companies. Another repurposing idea would be to convert some older office buildings into residential uses. In the U.S., programs like Vacant Places Into Vibrant Spaces have been successful but mostly for office to residential conversions of older buildings with smaller floor plates. They don't work for offices buildings with floor plates over 7,500 square feet (which is the case for most of Calgary's empty high-rise office space), as it is expensive and difficult to meet residential building codes, which are very different from commercial ones, making it tough to compete with new residential construction. In an ideal world, Calgary could become a global talent hub, where skilled workers who have been displaced from the energy and related industries continue to live in Calgary but become a remote workforce for energy projects around the world. Temporary and permanent satellite offices could be established in Calgary with teams of engineers, geologists, accountants, bankers etc. working on projects around the world. The obvious strategy would be to woo international companies in the finance, insurance, transportation, agriculture, digital media and renewable resources to set up a Canadian or North American office in Calgary, maybe even relocate here. With cities like San Francisco, Seattle and Boston facing major affordable housing crises for millennial workers, Calgary could become a very attractive place for a satellite office for companies in those cities. One "off the wall" idea postulated by George Brookman, CEO of West Canadian Industries, would be to promote Calgary as an "International Centre for Energy Dispute Resolution," similar to the Netherland's TAMARA (Transportation And Maritime Arbitration Rotterdam-Amsterdam), which offers an extrajudicial platform for conducting professional arbitration for settling disputes. However, one wonders: Could Calgary compete with London and New York, which are already leaders in the international arbitration business? Incentivize rebirth Calgary has reinvented itself before, evolving from a ranching/agriculture-based economy to oil and gas in the middle of the 20th century. Indeed, the downtown core, which is an office ghetto today, would benefit immensely if incentives could be made to convert a dozen or so office buildings into condos, apartments or hotels to foster a rebirth of the core as a place to live. Calgary at a Crossroads is CBC Calgary's special focus on life in our city during the downturn. A look at Calgary's culture, identity and what it means to be Calgarian. Read more stories from the series at Calgary at a Crossroads. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/calgary/calgary-core-kickstart-richard-white-1.3638276
  5. http://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/115-new-jobs-created-in-greater-montreals-fintech-industry---iocs-opens-its-first-north-american-software-development-centre-in-montreal-577237671.html MONTRÉAL and LONDON, United Kingdom, April 27, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - IOCS - the world´s first developer of multi-tenant, end-to-end e-commerce platform for the processing of complex agreements - has chosen Montréal to establish its first software development centre in North America. With the support of Montréal International, IOCS, which is growing at an annual rate of 100%, will pursue its ambitious expansion strategy using Québec's metropolis as a springboard. The company plans to create a team of over 115 highly skilled employees in Montréal within the next three years.
  6. hockey19

    Anglo youth unemployment in Montreal

    C'est quoi vos opinions les gars? Honnêtement j'ai vécu ce scénario. Beaucoup de difficultés à trouver un emploi après mon bac. J'ai quitté pour l'Ontario pour prendre de l'expérience et revenu à Montréal après deux ans, mais je connais beaucoup de personnes éduqués qui ont resté à Ontario et c'est très dommage (avocats, ingénieurs, actuaires, etc). http://globalnews.ca/news/2608967/new-montreal-documentary-explores-anglo-youth-unemployment/ The film looks at the higher rate of unemployment for anglophone youth as opposed to francophone youth in Quebec’s largest city. According to career advisers, the lack of job opportunities for anglophones leads many to move to cities like Toronto. “Quite often, if English is an easier language for them, they leave Quebec,” said Iris Unger, YESMontreal’s executive director. “We’re losing a lot of really talented people.” According to the Association for Canadian studies, the unemployment rate is 8.4 per cent for anglophones and just 5.9 per cent for francophones. But for bilingual people, there’s still a discrepancy with a 5.8 per cent unemployment rate for anglophones versus a 3.4 per cent rate for francophones.
  7. http://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/healthy-economic-outlook-for-montreal-and-quebec-city-in-2016-570899271.html OTTAWA, March 3, 2016 /CNW/ - Quebec's two largest cities are forecast to enjoy healthy economic growth in 2016. Montréal and Québec City can expect growth of 2.3 per cent and 2 per cent, respectively, according to The Conference Board of Canada's Metropolitan Outlook: Winter 2016. "The depreciation of the Canadian dollar and a healthy U.S. economy is bringing good news to Québec City and Montréal and their export-oriented industries. Economic growth in both cities has been on the upswing. In fact, we expect real GDP growth in both Montréal and Québec City to outpace the national average for the second consecutive year in 2016, after trailing it for five straight years" said Alan Arcand, Associate Director, Centre for Municipal Studies, The Conference Board of Canada. Highlights Montréal is expected to see real GDP growth of 2.3 per cent in 2016, up from 1.7 per cent last year. Québec City's real GDP growth is expected to reach 2 per cent in 2016. Vancouver's real GDP is forecast to grow 3.3 per cent, making it the fastest growing economy among the 28 census metropolitan areas covered in this edition of the Metropolitan Outlook. Montréal Montréal's economic improvement will be driven by a strengthening manufacturing sector, a rebound in construction, and steady services sector gains. Manufacturing output is forecast to expand by 3 per cent in 2016, bolstered by the combination of a weaker Canadian dollar and healthy U.S. demand. Two massive infrastructure projects—the $4.2-billion Champlain Bridge and the $3.7-billion Turcot Interchange—will help the local construction industry shake off three straight years of declines. However, a decline in housing starts will limit overall construction output growth to 2 per cent in 2016. Growth among the services-producing industries is projected to be 2.2 per cent in 2016, the same rate as in 2015. All eight industry sectors will advance this year, with the biggest gains coming from the business services sector and the personal services sector. In all, Montréal is expected to post real GDP growth of 2.3 per cent this year, up from 1.7 per cent in 2015. About 26,000 jobs are expected to be created in 2016. A similar rise in the labour force will keep the unemployment rate at 8.2 per cent, well above the national average of 7 per cent.
  8. http://globalnews.ca/news/1895026/business-vacancies-skyrocketing-in-montreals-west-island/
  9. We Win We Win!! #1! It can never be said enough, apparently: Quebecers continue to pay some of the highest taxes in North America, according to a new study released today by Canadian public-policy think-tank the Fraser Institute. The study, Quebec’s Tax Competitiveness: A Barrier to Prosperity, compares Quebec’s personal, corporate, and payroll tax rates to other Canadian provinces and American states in 2014, and examines the effect on Quebec’s economic performance over the past 10 years. “Across the income scale, Quebecers pay more in taxes than virtually anyone else in Canada and the United States,” said Sean Speer, study co-author and associate director of the Fraser Institute’s Centre for Fiscal Studies. For example, Quebecers making $50,000 a year pay 16.37 per cent in provincial income taxes, the highest rate among all Canadian provinces and U.S. states, while Quebecers making $150,000 pay 20.97 per cent, the second highest rate for that income category. Quebec also has a higher corporate tax rate (11.9 per cent) than Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario. Quebec’s lack of tax competitiveness, particularly for individuals, has contributed to a relatively poor economic performance over the past decade, the study says. When taxes are high, individuals save less money, fewer new businesses spring up, and established businesses hire less people and curb their investments, the study says. “There’s no doubt taxes play a vital role in society, but to improve Quebec’s economic prospects and competitiveness in North America, Quebecers and the Quebec businesses need a lighter tax burden,” Speer said. © Copyright © The Montreal Gazette
  10. ProposMontréal

    Criminalité à Montréal

    Imaginez, même Le Globe and mail trouve des bon points sur Montréal c'est temps ci. Source: Globe and mail Montreal's murder rate reaches record low With 29 homicides recorded for 2008, police argue city one of the safest in North America MONTREAL -- In the 1970s, 80s and into the 90s, Montreal was saddled with scores of murders each year, a bloody battle that kept police busy and the crime tabloids happy. This year is closing out with a different kind of Montreal crime story: Homicides have hit record lows. Police report that, provided there are none today and tomorrow, 2008 is ending with 29 homicides, the smallest number recorded since the creation of the force in 1972. Since murder is considered a reliable barometer of social violence, police cautiously argue that Montreal is one of the safest major North American cities. Attempted murders are down, too. "Montreal is becoming like the suburbs," said Clément Rose, police commander of the major crimes division in Montreal. "People have this impression that Montreal is violent. That impression is false, really false, and these figures are real." Cdr. Rose said homicides have dropped so sharply, his 30-odd investigators have been devoting themselves to cold cases dating back as far as 1969. For the past four years, Montreal has recorded the lowest homicide rate among Canada's five biggest cities - the others are Toronto, Vancouver, Edmonton and Calgary. Toronto and Calgary, meanwhile, each recorded their highest homicide rate last year since the early 1990s. By way of comparison, Phoenix, a U.S. city of similar to size to Montreal, recorded more than 200 homicides last year. Philadelphia, with close to Montreal's population, had nearly 400. Several causes are cited for Montreal's drop. Police say efforts targeting street gangs have helped radically cut gang-related deaths; they fell to seven this year, half last year's total. Cdr. Rose said police have actively worked with leaders in immigrant and minority communities, who act as effective liaisons to resolve problems. "We've developed a better understanding of the street-gang phenomenon. It has let us develop informants and a better information network," he said. "In the long term, when you develop partnerships and friendships with these groups, it can't hurt." Homicides have also dropped since an anti-biker operation in 2001 put many organized-crime figures behind bars. Few homicides are committed by strangers, the kind of random crime that most frightens city dwellers. The overwhelmingly number of homicide victims in Montreal, as elsewhere, knew their attackers. Criminologists point to larger social shifts for the drop in homicides in Montreal. An aging population helps, something credited with bringing down the homicide rate across North America. "By the age of 40, you just don't have the guts to shoot people," Cdr. Rose said. "Everyone at 40 is more rational. Even crooks are more rational." But criminologists say that relative stability may help explain in part why homicide rates are consistently higher in Western Canada than in the east. The fast-growing cities of the West tend to be magnets for a younger, more mobile population. "An older society is a society in which people learn to live in peace with one another over time," said Maurice Cusson, a criminologist at the University of Montreal. Experts say it's noteworthy that a province with a dipping homicide rate - homicide in Quebec as a whole hit a 40-year low last year - is known for taking a distinctive approach toward dealing with offenders, favouring rehabilitation over harsh punishment. Quebeckers' attitude has placed it at odds with the tough law-and-order approach promoted by Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Conservatives. Quebec City, the province's second-largest urban centre, didn't record a single homicide in 2007 - a first for a large Canadian city since Statistics Canada began keeping figures in 1981. "Quebec is one province that has placed an emphasis on diverting people from the justice system and finding alternatives to prison," said Margaret Shaw, a criminologist at the International Centre for the Prevention of Crime in Montreal. Sometimes, even police acknowledge that luck can play a role in keeping down crime. Cdr. Rose says there's no way of knowing what a new year will bring; some say an economic downturn can have an impact on crime. "Right now, people love one another in Montreal," he said, half jokingly. "There is love in the city. All we can hope is that the same is true in 2009." Murder in major cities Criminologists say the Western Canadian cities have higher murder rates because of younger, more mobile populations. Homicides per 100,000 population 3.28 Edmonton 3.14 Calgary 2.41 Vancouver 2.01 Toronto 1.80 CANADA 1.58 Montreal
  11. Where to buy now We tell you exactly which neighbourhoods are set to skyrocket in value. MONTREAL A small slice of Europe on this side of the big pond, Montreal has been dubbed Canada’s sexiest city. With a jam-packed festival season that includes the highly rated Just For Laughs comedy festival and the Festival International de Jazz, along with an array of local boutiques, restaurants and bistros, Montreal offers something for everyone—as long as you can find a job. While the national unemployment rate hovers at around 7%, Montreal’s unemployment rate sits at 8.2%. Still, the city saw a 4% rise in its population from 2011 to 2012 and announcements of inner-city rejuvenation—including the new McGill University Health Centre—are helping bolster property prices. Real estate is still cheap compared with other major Canadian cities—the average price of a home on Montreal Island is $481,386, and if you broaden the boundaries and look at the Greater Montreal Area, including the North and South Shores, the average home price is $324,595. “It’s comparatively cheaper than say Toronto or Vancouver, but we also battle to attract jobs,” explains Jeffrey Baker, a realtor with Royal LePage Dynastie. The best real estate opportunities right now are on the island itself. First on our list is the Rosemont/La Petite Patrie area, known locally as Little Italy. “This area is very, very hot,” says Baker. A big reason is that the neighbourhood is on the northern border of the Le Plateau/Mont-Royal area—a vibrant, popular and expensive place located near downtown. “Rosemont/La Petite Patrie isn’t a Plateau want-to-be,” says Baker. “It has its own distinct character. But many people who start out renting in Plateau end up buying here.” In fact, this is what Matthew Taylor, 50, and his 40-year-old Rosa De Leon did earlier this year. “We bought in mid-December after living and renting for 20 years in Plateau-Mont-Royal,” says Taylor, a CEGEP teacher at Dawson College. While the couple originally wanted to purchase in Plateau, they found they were priced out of the market. “Everything we looked at within our budget was far too small for a family of four,” says Taylor. That’s when the couple started looking at other neighbourhoods, eventually settling on a duplex in La Petite Patrie. “We really love checking out the local restaurants,” says Taylor. They aren’t the only ones. In the last three years, as the neighbourhood has become popular with buyers, prices have zoomed up 23%. “This is a high density area with lots of picturesque homes,” Baker says. In recent years many older textile buildings were converted into lofts, explains Amy Assaad, a Royal LePage Heritage realtor. This provided great first-time buyer opportunities, while helping to gentrify the neighbourhood. If the average property price of $468,000 is a bit daunting, consider our next top neighbourhood of Villeray/Saint Michel/Parc-Extension. Directly to the north, this large area has a population of 142,000 residents. The main draw is the neighbourhood’s affordability. Average property prices are more than $100,000 cheaper than neighbouring communities and the area is experiencing dramatic growth. “Lots of condo conversions are taking place in this community,” Assaad says. David Schneider, a Sutton Group Immobilia realtor and history-buff, explains that historically the neighbourhood has been one of the poorest urban communities in Canada. “Cheap rents meant students have been living here for decades. This, in turn, has made the area cool.” The third neighbourhood in our Montreal ranking was South-West (also known as Sud-Ouest). Homes in this area are 11% cheaper than the average Montreal Island home, but area prices have appreciated 40% in the last three years. “I’ve been buzzing about this neighbourhood for the last five years,” says Schneider. “Property values here are undervalued.” It’s an opinion shared by Nikki Tsantrizos, 29, and her partner, Steve Lavigne, 34. Two years ago, the couple started looking in the St. Henri district of South-West for a place to buy. “We’d rented in the area for 10 years and despite being a rough area, just loved it.” That was two years ago. Now, a full reno later, the value of their home has risen 40%. “When we bought there were strip clubs, hotdog stands and poutine shops,” says Tsantrizos. “Now these have been replaced by trendy cafes and boutiques.” But despite being close to downtown, the canal and the Atwater Market, this area’s reputation has been marred by social housing projects. Even so, recent developments are starting to put the community on the map. For instance, a high-tech hospital—slated to open in 2015—is prompting speculation on future home prices. Two other neighbourhoods to consider are Verdun and LaSalle—both on the southern tip of the island. While Verdun is an older neighbourhood (originally settled by the Irish) it’s got a lot of potential. Despite a three-year appreciation of 22%, families may be leery of the area, given its high crime rate. Still, with its close proximity to the canal, downtown, the Métro (Montreal’s subway system) and Concordia University, it’s only a matter of time before the area experiences true gentrification. Homes in LaSalle are also rising, with an 11% increase in the last year alone. “Though it’s much more suburban than the other four neighbourhoods—and not as well-served by transit—it provides a less dense community that’s very family-oriented,” Schneider says. It’s also a place known for having some of the best shopping in the city. http://www.moneysense.ca/property/buy/where-to-buy-now-2
  12. 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
  13. 10. Port Richey, Florida: $59,900 9. Holiday, Florida: $59,900 8. Youngstown, Ohio: $57,550 7. Dearborn Heights, Michigan: $55,000 6. Whiting, New Jersey: $52,450 5. Warren, Michigan: $49,900 4. Redford, Michigan: $40,000 3. Gary, Indiana: $39,900 2. Flint, Michigan: $31,950 1. Detroit, Michigan: $21,000 Cities Where Homes Cost Less Than a Car July 20, 2012 by 247wallst Source: Flickr - Marshall Astor For many Americans, homeownership is the epitome of living the American dream. Yet, in towns with high tumbling home prices and double-digit vacancy rates, median-priced homes now cost the equivalent of new American cars — except, as investments go, they’re slightly more risky. Read: Cities Where Homes Cost Less Than a Car Call it the dark side of the American dream – but if you can only afford to buy just one, which would you choose? In hard-hit cities, why own a home when you can rent one without the risk of foreclosure if your job falls through? Or, for about the same money, you can sport new wheels, facing only the risk of repossession — a lesser credit report complication than a foreclosure. While a car is unlikely to increase in value, its depreciation is both more manageable and predictable than a home. “Buying a home in most places is risky,” says Jed Kolko, chief economist and head of analytics at real estate site Trulia. These high risks in towns such as Detroit, Michigan or Youngstown, Ohio have helped depress housing prices. And until the labor market improves there’s no real chance of a strong recovery in housing. “Towns with a history of job losses probably won’t see big price gains, especially if they have high vacancy rates, because it means buyers have a lot of homes to choose from,” says Kolko. This quandary is especially meaningful to residents of Motor City, who have experienced deepening levels of housing hell in recent years. Much has been written about Detroit’s high misery index, and the challenges of thriving in a city with high unemployment, high crime rates, and city services under severe budgetary constraints. And yet, for those willing to take a long view of the city, Detroit also offers amazing bargains to residents dedicated to living in that community. Despite its problems, even in Detroit, it’s not unusual for multiple buyers to vie for an appealing home in a nice neighborhood. The city has one of the highest rental vacancy rates in America and boasts a four-month supply of homes on the market, according to a recent report in the Detroit Free Press. A buyer’s market is typically six or more months’ supply. Many residents of depressed cities in Michigan, Florida, Indiana and Ohio have been slammed by job losses and tumbling housing prices, too, and recovery is coming slowly if at all. Yet, on the positive side, these towns also offer a low cost of living by American standards that make for attractive buy-side opportunities for those willing to take a long view of homeownership. 24/7 Wall St. asked Trulia, a leading provider of real estate listings and market data, to identify and rank cities by the median prices of homes sold last year. Trulia limited the list to markets with an adequate supply of non-foreclosure, single-family homes, which ruled out markets that may have unusual spikes in median sales prices. To provide further context of how economic data can impact local housing market conditions we also gathered median-income data as well as Q1 2012 vacancy rates from the U.S. Census Bureau, unemployment numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and June 2012 foreclosure figures from RealtyTrac. With home prices at 30-year lows and mortgages available at record low rates, some residents in troubled cities will be tempted to take the plunge and buy a home. Yet, amid this fledgling recovery there’s still the allure of plunking down a small deposit and buying a car that can take you to a city that offers a healthier housing market and stronger long-term job prospects. These are the cities where homes cost less than a car. 10. Port Richey, Fla. >Median listing price: $59,900 >Comparably priced car: Cadillac CTS-V ($71,000) >Housing price change (year over year): -0.1% >Median household income: $31,016 >Unemployment rate: 8.6% Port Richey was clearly devastated by foreclosures, job losses and builders who overestimated demand for new homes. That’s evident in its whopping 24.7% vacant housing rate, which is more than twice the national average. Housing prices in the area have fallen 48% from their peak, according to Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) data. Also Read: The Fastest Growing Cities in America 9. Holiday, Fla. >Median listing price: $59,900 >Comparably priced car: Tesla Model S ($69,900 with 85 kwh battery) >Housing price change (year over year): -0.1% >Median household income: $37,240 >Unemployment: 8.6% Holiday’s 22.2% vacant housing rate, nearly twice the national average, is a hole so big that it will take years for housing demand to match supply. The 8.6% unemployment rate, though unexceptional for America, may further stunt a local recovery. Like neighboring Port Richey, housing prices have also plummeted 48% from their peak, according to the FHFA. 8. Youngstown, Ohio >Median listing price: $57,550 >Comparably priced car: Chevy Suburban ($68,900) >Housing price change (year over year): n/a >Median household income: $25,002 >Unemployment: 7.4% Just as the age of a tree is revealed by rings in its trunk, the age of a town’s housing stock, coupled by new construction rates, speaks volumes about the sturdiness of a city. In the U.S., only 14.4% of homes were built before 1940; in Youngstown, it’s more than 40%. New home construction is at a standstill. Nearly 19% of homes stand vacant, which places further downward pressure on a local recovery. 7. Dearborn Heights, Mich. >Median listing price: $55,000 >Comparably priced car: Cadillac Escalade ($64,800) >Housing price change (year over year): 5.2% >Median household income: $48,905 >Unemployment: 9.9% The city of Dearborn Heights is home to many workers in the auto industry, so it is far from immune to housing and other economic issues plaguing many Michigan cities. Home prices in the city have fallen by a fairly drastic 55.2% since their peak, according to FHFA data. Yet Dearborn Heights would appear to have a little more upside than some of its neighboring cities if only because Ford is preserving it, and because the number of residents earning more than $100,000 annually remains in line with national averages, unlike any of the other cities on this list. 6. Whiting, N.J. >Median listing price: $52,450 >Comparably priced car: Chevy Corvette Grand Sport ($64,650) >Housing price change (year over year): n/a >Median household income: $37,397 >Unemployment: 11.9% Whiting, an unincorporated area in Ocean County, is home to many retirement communities. The aging of the Baby Boomer population may help lead Whiting out of its funk. Unemployment isn’t especially high. In fact, unlike many other towns on this list, the vacant housing unit rate of 7.8% is below the national average of 11.8%. 5. Warren, Mich. > Median listing price: $49,900 >Comparably priced car: Lincoln Navigator ($59,900) >Housing price change (year over year): 6.5% >Median household income: $46,247 >Unemployment: 9.9% Chief among several promising housing trends for Warren is a surprisingly low homeowner vacancy rate, which suggests that the town has seen fewer foreclosures than many other cities in Michigan. Still, sales prices have dropped 35% over the past five years in Warren, says Trulia, which suggests that quite a few homeowners are underwater and perhaps holding onto their properties until things turn around. Also Read: Countries Where People Work Least 4. Redford, Mich. > Median listing price: $40,000 >Comparably priced car: Ford F-450 ($55,000) >Housing price change (year over year): 5.2% >Median household income: $52,573 >Unemployment: 9.9% Redford is not a large city, but it suffers from problems such as 1-in-159 homes in foreclosure, the worst rate among cities on this list. It also has aging homes, most of which were built just after World War II and may be expensive to maintain. Like Warren, prices have dropped by 38.5% from their peak according to FHFA data. On the bright side, at $52,573 the average annual income in Redford is higher than in many of its neighboring cities on this list. 3. Gary, Ind. > Median listing price: $39,900 >Comparably priced car: Ford Expedition ($39,900) >Housing price change (year over year): – 7.5% >Median household income: $27,367 >Unemployment: 8.5% In Gary, as in most other troubled housing markets, employment or rather the lack of opportunities holds the key to its housing recovery. The current high unemployment rate is not a blip unfortunately — Gary has 3% fewer jobs than it did a decade ago, according to Trulia. Much of the local population lives at some of the nation’s lowest income levels as 46.5% earn under $25,000 annually according to Census economic data. Such data suggest that local businesses may have trouble leading the city of recession. 2. Flint, Mich. > Median listing price: $31,950 >Comparably priced car: Chrysler 300 ($31,950) >Housing price change (year over year): n/a >Median household income: $28,835 >Unemployment: 8.9% According to Trulia’s Kolko, both Flint and Detroit experienced significant housing-price declines, not because of overbuilding as in Florida but because of “long-term job decline coupled with declining populations.” Worse, Flint suffers from a significant amount of poverty with about 44% of the population earning under $25,000 a year according to Census economic data. Also Read: The Most Dangerous Cities in America 1. Detroit, Mich. >Median listing price: $21,000 >Comparably priced car: Chevy Malibu ($21,000) >Housing price change (year over year): 5.2% >Median household income: $29,447 >Unemployment: 9.9% Detroit’s leaders are committed to reducing spending and creating a more livable and prosperous city for families and businesses of all sizes. The local automotive economy is improving, especially as Chrysler stages a comeback from its near-death experience. Some may interpret a year-over-year housing price increase as a positive sign for Detroit’s future. But unkind economists might call it a dead-cat bounce. Unemployment is not merely high, population is decreasing, and in 2010, one-in-five homes were vacant. Long term, that’s a lot of downward pressure on housing prices. Rusty Weston http://247wallst.com/2012/07/20/cities-where-homes-cost-less-than-a-car/3/
  14. The French election and business The terror The 75% tax and other alarming campaign promises Apr 7th 2012 | PARIS | from the print edition EUROFINS SCIENTIFIC, a bio-analytics firm, is the sort of enterprise that France boasts about. It is fast-growing, international and hungry to buy rivals. So people noticed when in March it decamped to Luxembourg. Observers reckon it was fleeing France’s high taxes. It will soon be joined by Sword Group, a successful software firm, which voted to move to Luxembourg last month. As France enters the final weeks of its presidential campaign, candidates are competing to promise new measures that would hurt business. François Hollande, the Socialist candidate, and the current favourite to win the second and final round on May 6th, has promised a top marginal income-tax rate of 75% for those earning over €1m ($1.3m). He has declared war on finance. If the Socialists win, he pledges, corporate taxes will rise and stock options will be outlawed. Other countries welcome global firms. “France seems to want to keep them out,” sighs Denis Kessler, the boss of SCOR, a reinsurer. Jean-Luc Mélenchon, an even leftier candidate than Mr Hollande, has been gaining ground. Communists marched to the Bastille on March 18th to support him. The right offers little solace. Nicolas Sarkozy, the incumbent, is unpopular partly because of his perceived closeness to fat cats. To distance himself, he has promised a new tax on French multinationals’ foreign sales. If Mr Hollande wins, he may water down his 75% income-tax rate. But it would be difficult to back away from such a bold, public pledge. And doing business in France is hard enough without such uncertainty. Companies must cope with heavy social charges, intransigent unions and political meddling. The 35-hour work week, introduced in 2000, makes it hard to get things done. Mr Hollande says he will reverse a measure Mr Sarkozy introduced to dilute its impact by exempting overtime pay from income tax and social charges. The 75% income-tax rate is dottier than a pointilliste painting. When other levies are added, the marginal rate would top 90%. In parts of nearby Switzerland, the top rate is around 20%. French firms are already struggling to hire foreign talent. More firms may leave. Armand Grumberg, an expert in corporate relocation at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, a law firm, says that several big companies and rich families are looking at ways to leave France. At a recent lunch for bosses of the largest listed firms, the main topic was how to get out. Investment banks and international law firms would probably be the first to go, as they are highly mobile. Already, the two main listed banks, BNP Paribas and Société Générale, are facing queries from investors about Mr Hollande’s plan to separate their retail arms from investment banking. He has also vowed to hike the corporate tax on banks from 33% to nearly 50%. In January Paris launched a new €120m ($160m) “seed” fund to attract hedge funds. Good luck with that. Last month Britain promised to cut its top tax rate from 50% to 45%. No financial centre comes close to Mr Hollande’s 75% rate (see chart). Large firms will initially find it hard to skedaddle. Those with the status ofsociété anonyme, the most common, need a unanimous vote from shareholders. But the European Union’s cross-border merger directive offers an indirect route: French firms can merge with a foreign company. Big groups also have the option of moving away the substance of their operations, meaning decision-making and research and development. Last year, Jean-Pascal Tricoire, the boss of Schneider Electric, an energy-services company, moved with his top managers to run the firm from Hong Kong (where the top tax rate is 15%). For now, the firm’s headquarters and tax domicile remain in France. But for how long? Pressure to leave could come from foreign shareholders, says Serge Weinberg, the chairman of Sanofi, a drugmaker. “American, German or Middle Eastern shareholders will not tolerate not being able to get the best management because of France’s tax regime,” he says. At the end of 2010, foreign shareholders held 42% of the total value of the firms in the CAC 40, the premier French stock index. That is higher than in many other countries. It is not clear whether the 75% tax rate would apply to capital gains as well as income. As with most of the election campaign’s anti-business pledges, the detail has been left vague. Mr Sarkozy has offered various definitions of what he means by “big companies”, which would have to pay his promised new tax. Some businessfolk therefore hope that the most onerous pledges will be quietly ditched once the election is over. But many nonetheless find the campaign alarming. French politicians not only seem to hate business; they also seem to have little idea how it actually works. The most debilitating effects of all this may be long-term. Brainy youngsters have choices. They can find jobs or set up companies more or less anywhere. The ambitious will risk their savings, borrow money and toil punishing hours to create new businesses that will, in turn, create jobs and new products. But they will not do this for 25% (or less) of the fruits of their labour. Zurich is only an hour away; French politics seem stuck in another century. http://www.economist.com/node/21552219
  15. Malek

    France's future: A country in denial

    VISIT the euro zone and you will be invigorated by gusts of reform. The “Save Italy” plan has done enough for Mario Monti, the prime minister, to declare, however prematurely, that the euro crisis is nearly over. In Spain Mariano Rajoy’s government has tackled the job market and is about to unveil a tight budget (see article). For all their troubles, Greeks know that the free-spending and tax-dodging are over. But one country has yet to face up to its changed circumstances. France is entering the final three weeks of its presidential campaign. The ranking of the first round, on April 22nd, remains highly uncertain, but the polls back François Hollande, the Socialist challenger, to win a second-round victory. Indeed, in elections since the euro crisis broke, almost all governments in the euro zone have been tossed out by voters. But Nicolas Sarkozy, the Gaullist president, has been clawing back ground. The recent terrorist atrocity in Toulouse has put new emphasis on security and Islamism, issues that tend to favour the right—or, in the shape of Marine Le Pen, the far right. Yet what is most striking about the French election is how little anybody is saying about the country’s dire economic straits (see article). The candidates dish out at least as many promises to spend more as to spend less. Nobody has a serious agenda for reducing France’s eye-watering taxes. Mr Sarkozy, who in 2007 promised reform with talk of a rupture, now offers voters protectionism, attacks on French tax exiles, threats to quit Europe’s passport-free Schengen zone and (at least before Toulouse) talk of the evils of immigration and halal meat. Mr Hollande promises to expand the state, creating 60,000 teaching posts, partially roll back Mr Sarkozy’s rise in the pension age from 60 to 62, and squeeze the rich (whom he once cheerfully said he did not like), with a 75% top income-tax rate. A plethora of problems France’s defenders point out that the country is hardly one of the euro zone’s Mediterranean basket cases. Unlike those economies, it should avoid recession this year. Although one ratings agency has stripped France of its AAA status, its borrowing costs remain far below Italy’s and Spain’s (though the spread above Germany’s has risen). France has enviable economic strengths: an educated and productive workforce, more big firms in the global Fortune 500 than any other European country, and strength in services and high-end manufacturing. However, the fundamentals are much grimmer. France has not balanced its books since 1974. Public debt stands at 90% of GDP and rising. Public spending, at 56% of GDP, gobbles up a bigger chunk of output than in any other euro-zone country—more even than in Sweden. The banks are undercapitalised. Unemployment is higher than at any time since the late 1990s and has not fallen below 7% in nearly 30 years, creating chronic joblessness in the crime-ridden banlieues that ring France’s big cities. Exports are stagnating while they roar ahead in Germany. France now has the euro zone’s largest current-account deficit in nominal terms. Perhaps France could live on credit before the financial crisis, when borrowing was easy. Not any more. Indeed, a sluggish and unreformed France might even find itself at the centre of the next euro crisis. Browse our slideshow guide to the leading candidates for the French presidency It is not unusual for politicians to avoid some ugly truths during elections; but it is unusual, in recent times in Europe, to ignore them as completely as French politicians are doing. In Britain, Ireland, Portugal and Spain voters have plumped for parties that promised painful realism. Part of the problem is that French voters are notorious for their belief in the state’s benevolence and the market’s heartless cruelty. Almost uniquely among developed countries, French voters tend to see globalisation as a blind threat rather than a source of prosperity. With the far left and the far right preaching protectionism, any candidate will feel he must shore up his base. Many business leaders cling to the hope that a certain worldly realism will emerge. The debate will tack back to the centre when Mr Sarkozy and Mr Hollande square off in the second round; and once elected, the new president will ditch his extravagant promises and pursue a sensible agenda of reform, like other European governments. But is that really possible? It would be hard for Mr Sarkozy suddenly to propose deep public-spending cuts, given all the things he has said. It would be harder still for Mr Hollande to drop his 75% tax rate. 1981 and all that Besides, there is a more worrying possibility than insincerity. The candidates may actually mean what they say. And with Mr Hollande, who after all is still the most likely victor, that could have dramatic consequences. The last time an untried Socialist candidate became president was in 1981. As a protégé of François Mitterrand, Mr Hollande will remember how things turned out for his mentor. Having nationalised swathes of industry and subjected the country to two devaluations and months of punishment by the markets, Mitterrand was forced into reverse. Mr Hollande’s defenders say he is a pragmatist with a more moderate programme than Mitterrand’s. His pension-age rollback applies only to a small set of workers; his 75% tax rate affects a tiny minority. Yet such policies indicate hostility to entrepreneurship and wealth creation and reflect the French Socialist Party’s failure to recognise that the world has changed since 1981, when capital controls were in place, the European single market was incomplete, young workers were less mobile and there was no single currency. Nor were France’s European rivals pursuing big reforms with today’s vigour. If Mr Hollande wins in May (and his party wins again at legislative elections in June), he may find he has weeks, not years, before investors start to flee France’s bond market. The numbers of well-off and young French people who hop across to Britain (and its 45% top income tax) could quickly increase. Even if Mr Sarkozy is re-elected, the risks will not disappear. He may not propose anything as daft as a 75% tax, but neither is he offering the radical reforms or the structural downsizing of spending that France needs. France’s picnickers are about to be swamped by harsh reality, no matter who is president. http://www.economist.com/node/21551478
  16. (Courtesy of the Financial Post) :confused: Okay, I pay the bank like what $4 a month. That 0.13% for someone that has $50 million the bank, is going to lose like $65,000 per month ($780,000 per year). I have a feeling many people that deal with custodian banks, will look somewhere else. I guess the banks had to go after their largest customers.
  17. The Toronto Board of Trade's Scorecard on Prosperity ranks 24 cities based on economy and labour attractiveness #20 Montreal (Courtesy of The Globe and Mail)
  18. jesseps

    Bye Bye Dubai?

    (Courtesy of Inhabitat) Now thats a hell of a thing, build million dollar buildings just to destroy them
  19. Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/Quebec+highest+acquittal+rate+Country/3338332/story.html#ixzz0v6w8XDYg Wow, this is not good.
  20. July 28, 2010 Economic Snapshot Office vacancy rates hit five-year high, despite uptick in office jobs JOHN CLINKARD consulting economist, CanaData The national office vacancy rate reached 9% in the second quarter of 2010, continuing a trend that started in the fourth quarter of 2008. This rate was up from 8.8% in the first quarter and was its highest level since the second quarter of 2005. According to the most recent numbers from Cushman & Wakefield, the increase was largely due to the addition of 1.5 million square feet of new supply. And it occurred despite the fact that 911,800 square feet of space were absorbed in the quarter. The office vacancy rate retreated slightly in Calgary (from 13.4% to 13.3%) and Winnipeg (from 9.3% to 9.0%) but increased in the remaining eight major metro areas. Among the 10 largest census metro areas, St John’s, N.L. had the lowest office vacancy rate in the country (5.5%), despite a significant decline in office-based employment over the past year. Ottawa recorded the second lowest office vacancy rate (6.6%) due in large part to a strong (+7.6% year over year) increase in office-based employment in the second quarter. Other major metro areas with below (national) average vacancy rates in the second quarter included: Saint John, N.B. (7.9%), Toronto (8.1%), and Vancouver (8.4%). In Montreal the office vacancy rate increased from 9.1% to 9.2%, its highest level since the third quarter of 2007. The office vacancy rate for the 10 largest metro areas in Canada is now at its highest level in five years, and year-to-date commercial building permits are down by 3.5% year over year in May. As such, the near-term outlook for new office construction is quite guarded. The outlook is further clouded by the concerns about the health of the U.S./global recovery. Having said this, the relative strength of office-based employment in Ottawa, Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver continues to point to a pickup in office construction late in 2010 or early in 2011. John Clinkard has over 30 years’ experience as an economist in international, national and regional research and analysis with leading financial institutions and media outlets in Canada. :(:(
  21. (Courtesy of Huffington Post) Honestly some of the comments about the topic is beyond stupid. Some people don't want to move to Canada seeing we are seen as a "socialist" country
  22. mtlurb

    Red Light Cameras

    Houston study lauds red light cameras despite uptick in accidents We all know we shouldn't mess with Texas. And Houston, Texans shouldn't mess around with statistics, because the folks running the show are going to come to any conclusions they want no matter what the statistics say. This is the easy part: a study of red light cameras in the city shows that accidents have actually increased at intersections with the cameras. These are the parts that are open to interpretation: most intersections only have one camera looking at one (out of four) directions of traffic, but the accident rate went up for traffic in the other three unmonitored directions; and, in the one monitored direction, "accidents remained relatively flat or showed only a slight increase." What do you make of that? Mayor Bill White and the study authors say the city in general is experiencing a swell in the number of collisions, and claim that collisions at the monitored intersections haven't risen as much as the wider municipal rate. Yet they have no data to back up an increase in citywide collisions, and no year-on-year accident data at intersections (let alone an explanation for the uptick). White said that a 40-percent year-on-year drop in red light citations in the month of October shows the program is working and keeping drivers more safe. Critics say that the program is nothing but a cash register for city government. The study's authors plan to study insurance industry findings to come up with more substantive conclusions. http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/6185795.html
  23. ErickMontreal

    Ste. Catherine St. has top lease rates

    Ste. Catherine St. has top lease rates Tied with Bloor St. in Toronto. Most expensive retail corridors in Canada By LYNN MOORE, The Gazette June 8, 2010 Toronto's Bloor St. and Montreal's Ste. Catherine St. are Canada's most expensive retail corridors, according to Colliers International's 2010 Global Retail Report, released yesterday. Ste. Catherine St. is tied in 32nd position with Toronto's Bloor St. on the global list of shopping hot spots. Merchants in the two most popular Canadian shopping areas pay an average lease rate of $300 per square foot, according to the report. The 2010 Winter Olympic festivities in Vancouver were not enough for the city's marquee retail stroll -Robson St., with its average rate of $200 per square foot -to overtake Toronto and Montreal's premier retail streets on the list. Jim Smerdon, director of retail and strategic planning with Colliers, said the retailers themselves set the lease rates according to the importance of the location. "The hallmark of strong retail streets is a blend of the size of the market, things like accessibility and parking, and a host of intangibles such as the history of the street as a commercial destination," he said. Even though Toronto is larger than Montreal and the commercial capital of Canada with more head offices and wealthy residents, it's not surprising that Ste. Catherine St.'s shops can command the same rent, Smerdon said. Ste. Catherine St., which is often thick with pedestrians night and day, is an experience, he acknowledged. "Montreal is more of a destination for shoppers than Toronto is ... and Ste. Catherine is more of a lifestyle experience," he said. In 31st spot on the Colliers list was Honolulu's Kalakaua Ave. and 33rd spot was occupied by Amsterdam's Kalverstraat. The report shows that Canada's most exclusive streets are a bargain compared with the world's priciest, in such places as Paris, New York, Hong Kong and London, where rates per square foot exceed $1,000. Topping the list was the Champs Elysees in Paris, with an average lease rate of about $1,256. All figures in the report are in U.S. dollars. The information comes from surveys and material supplied by Colliers staff in 61 countries, Smerdon said. lmoore@thegazette.canwest.com © Copyright © The Montreal Gazette Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/business/Catherine+lease+rates/3125235/story.html#ixzz0qXanL7Xi