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  1. http://www.journalexpress.ca/Actualites/2015-04-13/article-4109695/Ce-sera-le-Grand-Hotel-Times-de-Drummondville/1 DRUMMONDVILLE. L'hôtel qui sera annexé au Centrexpo portera officiellement le nom de Grand Hôtel TIMES de Drummondville. C'est ce qu'indique le site web de l'entreprise dirigée par Jean Audet. «Le Grand Hôtel TIMES de Drummondville directement relié au nouveau centre de foire Centrexpo vous offrira, du haut de ses 12 étages, une perspective panoramique unique surplombant toute la région. Nous vous offrirons un service d’hébergement personnalisé, caractérisé par une anticipation des besoins de ses clients et un souci du détail impeccable, en vous proposant 140 magnifiques chambres et suites dans un design à vous couper le souffle», est-il souligné. La direction ajoute que : «notre vision basée sur l’évolution et l’originalité, apportera un concept réinventé dans le domaine des réunions au Centre-du-Québec. Nos salles de conférences, situées au sommet de l’édifice, entièrement fenestrées et équipées à la fine pointe de la technologie vous ouvriront une voie vers une expérience incontournable». On parle également de diverses commodités telles une piscine intérieure, une salle d’entrainement, ainsi qu’un vaste stationnement. Il est rappelé que l’espace restauration accueillera plus de 200 convives. Le maire Alexandre Cusson a dévoilé, lors de son Souper annuel, que le restaurant Cosmos viendra s'y installer. On précise bien sûr qu'il est possible de faire des réservations ou de s'informer en contactant Sylvie Pomerleau au 1-888-999-3499.
  2. [video=youtube;WH-3FsmU6KQ] At Amtrak we know the future of the Northeast Corridor (NEC) depends on the investments we make today, which is why we are excited to announce the upcoming arrival of the next-generation of high-speed rail. The new trainsets will replace the current Acela Express equipment and begin service in 2021. As part of this multi-faceted modernization program, Amtrak is also investing in the infrastructure needed to improve your customer experience onboard the train and in major NEC stations including Washington Union Station and Moynihan Station New York. This investment will expand and modernize the Acela Express service you’ve come to expect, while adding the amenities and ride quality of international high-speed train services. This next-generation of Acela Express will give you a more comfortable and productive travel experience throughout your entire journey. Just a few of the new amenities include: Approximately one-third more passenger seating, while preserving the spacious, high-end comfort found onboard today Modern interior design Improved Wi-Fi access and quality Personal outlets, USB ports and adjustable reading lights at every seat Enhanced food service options Exceed the ADA minimum accessibility requirements By adding 40-percent more trainsets than the current Acela Express fleet, we are providing you with more travel options. Upon delivery of the new trainsets, Acela Express service will be offered every half-hour between Washington, D.C. and New York City during peak times, and every hour between New York City and Boston throughout the day. This expanded fleet will give you more departure options during peak travel times. The new trainsets are among the safest, most reliable and energy efficient in the world. They have a 35-year track record of transporting billions of customers to their destinations safely. In reliability, we anticipate the new trainsets will be at least eight times more reliable than the equipment it replaces, ensuring that we will get you where you need to go on time, every time. Finally, the new trainsets will reduce operating energy consumption by at least 20 percent, through a combination of minimal aerodynamic drag and lightweight design. This is the most significant investment Amtrak has made in its infrastructure and technology in the 45 years of providing passenger rail service to the American public and it was important to us that these trainsets be “Made in America” as much as possible. For this project, we are pleased to be partnering with Alstom, a leading global provider of innovative systems and equipment in the railway sector. Alstom will be building these new trainsets in New York State, with 95 percent of the trainset’s components being made in America, and parts coming from more than 350 suppliers in over 30 U.S. states. We look forward to having you join us on this journey as we work to revolutionize high-speed passenger rail in the country, support the American economy and continue to provide you with a reliable, smooth and efficient ride as you travel throughout the Northeast. Continue to check back here for more details on the progress of next-generation high-speed rail on the Northeast Corridor. Amtrak’s Next-Generation of High-Speed Trains - blog.amtrak.com
  3. “Le sentiment se répand que l’ère des icônes est bel et bien terminée, que les architectes doivent délaisser les skylines pour redescendre au niveau des rues.” http://www.courrierinternational.com/article/architecture-biennale-de-venise-une-conscience-sociale-retrouvee Ce 28 mai s’ouvre la Biennale internationale d’architecture de Venise. Cette quinzième édition marque un tournant, selon le Financial Times : finie l’ère des starchitectes et de leurs débauches, l’époque exige une architecture socialement engagée. “C’est la première Biennale post-Piketty”, annonce le Financial Times. Ce 28 mai, la Biennale de Venise, vitrine mondiale de l’architecture contemporaine, repart pour une quinzième édition. Huit ans après l’explosion de la crise financière et la multiplication des mouvements Occupy, alors que l’Europe est confrontée à l’afflux de réfugiés, le malaise est perceptible, relève le quotidien britannique : “Le sentiment se répand que l’ère des icônes est bel et bien terminée, que les architectes doivent délaisser les skylines pour redescendre au niveau des rues.” Fini donc, le règne des starchitectes ? Depuis la fin des années 1990, Daniel Libeskind, Frank Gehry, Lebbeus Woods ou encore Zaha Hadid s’étaient fait une spécialité de construire des édifices de prestige au cœur des villes. “Ces projets étaient avant tout une affaire de statut et se souciaient peu du paysage urbain dans lequel ils s’inscrivaient, du fonctionnement de la ville et du quotidien des habitants”, rappelle le Financial Times. L’heure de la contrition En 2016, l’heure serait à “la contrition”, à un retour de balancier vers une “conscience sociale”, assure le quotidien britannique. Toute la question est de savoir comment la culture de l’architecture peut négocier cette transition de la célébrité mondiale aux bidonvilles de l’hémisphère Sud.” Mais le quotidien reconnaît que, avec Alejandro Aravena aux manettes, la Biennale a trouvé un commissaire qui parvient “à équilibrer les deux”. Récipiendaire du prix Pritzker 2016, l’équivalent du prix Nobel en architecture, le Chilien s’est fait un nom en construisant des écoles et des lotissements pour les plus modestes. Il est aussi l’inventeur d’un système de “demi-maisons” : des demeures que les habitants peuvent moduler et agrandir selon leurs besoins et leurs moyens. L’Irak pleure trop tard sa star Zaha Hadid Pour cette Biennale 2016, Alejandro a posé pour thème “Des nouvelles du front”. Tragédie des migrants en Méditerranée, guerre en Ukraine, réfugiés climatiques, pollution, les champs d’exploration sont multiples. Voici quelques-uns des événements qui, selon le magazine d’architecture et de design Deezen, sont à ne pas manquer : - Dans les pavillons allemand et finlandais, des expositions consacrées à l’accueil des réfugiés. - Dans le pavillon danois, un village capable de produire sa nourriture et son énergie, dessiné par le studio Effekt. - Dans les pavillons espagnol et belge, des expositions sur l’impact de la crise économique sur les villes. - Dans les pavillons suisse et israélien, des gros plans sur de nouveaux procédés de construction (robots, impression 3D, fibre carbone, dessins inspirés du vivant…). - Un hommage à Zaha Hadid, disparue le 31 mars dernier. - Un Lion d’or sera remis à Paulo Mendes da Rocha, figure du modernisme brésilien, pour l’ensemble de son œuvre. sent via Tapatalk
  4. Super de belle entrevue ici (Ça confirme plusieurs de nos discussions) As city goes, so do airports (2016-02-13 page B1) As chief executive of the non-profit authority Aéroports de Montréal, James Cherry has invested close to $2 billion in improvements to Pierre Elliott Trudeau Airport over the last decade. He sat down recently with Montreal Gazette contributor Peter Hadekel. Q What economic impact does an airport have on a city? A You may have the best airport in the world but if there isn't an economically vibrant city behind it to drive that traffic, then airlines aren't interested. We are more profitable and have better growth than most of the other airports, but our bond rating isn't as good. The reason is that more than 50 per cent of the rating of an airport is the economic activity in the city around it. Our ability to offer air service is far more affected by the economic vitality of the city. (I know Mark, you told us many times) Q Why did it take so long to convince Chinese airlines to come here? A They weren't necessarily convinced that this was a viable market. It took us years to convince them. Now we have Air China flying three times a week to Beijing and they are enchanted with the results (GREAT). The next logical thing would be for Air China to offer more than three times a week or ultimately, within a few years, go daily. Q So what's the key to getting more destinations? A The city has to be realistic. I get people telling me all the time: 'Why don't you have a daily flight to Helsinki? It's an emerging city.' Well, take a look at the numbers: 10 people a day go from Montreal to Helsinki. I'm sorry, you're not going to get a flight there. In order to get a direct flight at least three times a week, depending on the type of aircraft, you typically need between 30,000 and 40,000 passengers a year. Q What destinations are you adding in 2016? A Reykjavik and Lyon are starting in May. Air Canada to Casablanca is starting next summer, as well. Philadelphia, Denver and Houston are also starting this year. Remember, it's very tough for an airline to make money just on tourist business. They need that business traffic, that's what pays the overhead. Q What about the market for connecting passengers going through Montreal? A It's 18 per cent and growing, but that's not considered high. Toronto and Vancouver would be about 30 per cent. We've been targeting something like 25 per cent. Virtually all that connecting traffic is on Air Canada. We have more destinations for people to connect to today. There are 140 destinations served directly by this airport with more than 30 airlines. Transit passengers are very important because there's revenue to be gained from having them go through your airport. They are also important to justify a flight. There are two or three European destinations to which we would not have flights, were it not for connecting passengers. Zurich, Brussels and Geneva are good examples. Q The domestic traffic in Toronto is three times what it is here and in Vancouver and Calgary it's close to two times. How do you explain that? Calgary it's close to two times. How do you explain that? A Quebecers don't fly domestically. They don't vacation in Alberta, B.C. or Ontario and the business traffic here is as much north-south as east-west. Q You offer financial incentives to attract airlines to serve Montreal. Is that getting more expensive? A Yes it is. Airlines know that everybody wants them. They will not establish a new route unless they are getting some sort of incentive. The logic of it is that the upfront cost tends to be expensive because of promotions and everything else. And there's a period where they tend to lose money so we offer them some support, usually in the form of lower landing fees or a budget to help them promote the flight. Q Is the cross-border competition significant from airports like Plattsburgh and Burlington? Do you feel it? A No, and it's going down this year because of the dollar. It's way down. Q You have complained in the past about the rent that Aéroports de Montréal is charged by the federal government and the property tax due to the city of Montreal. Is that still an issue for you? A Yes, I take every opportunity to talk about it but I know it falls on deaf ears. So far, the federal government has shown absolutely no interest in solving the problem. The city of Montreal is even worse. They just close their ears. Between the two of them, we will pay close to $100 million this year. Property taxes and rent take 20 per cent offthe top just to provide a public service. This is happening across the country. More than $300 million a year goes to the government of Canada from the airports. Q In the surveys that you do, what is the biggest concern for passengers using the airport? A Access to the site is the No. 1 complaint: getting in and out, traffic, the Dorval Circle. I'm still looking at the bridge to nowhere (part of the new Dorval interchange under construction). It's been a bridge to nowhere for five or six years. We rebuilt all the roads on this property to match with it. This was all supposed to be ready in 2011. We spent $100 million of our money making that happen and it was done on time. And we're still waiting for the project to be completed. Q What's going on with Mirabel following the decision to demolish the passenger terminal? A Mirabel is still operating for freight. There are between 15,000 and 20,000 aircraft movements there. Business aircraft use it, too. Bombardier is up there with Pratt Whitney. We characterize it as a business, industrial and freight airport. We're going to put between $50 million and $60 million up there in the next year to redo the principal runway. We're not abandoning Mirabel; the vocation is solid. The decision wasn't made in a vacuum. We consulted with the city of Montreal, the Quebec government and Transport Canada. There was nothing wrong with the process. We were very highly accountable. Q Part of the debate about keeping Mirabel as a passenger airport was the noise and congestion issue at Dorval. Do you think you've managed that issue adequately? A Essentially, over the last 14 years we've doubled the passengers at this airport with the same number of aircraft movements. (interesting) The airlines have gotten very good at this. They don't fly half-empty planes. Is it perfect? No - there will always be people who are not going to be happy with noise. (Also, YUL dates back to 1941; nobody was around then...Overall noise also went down since Q What's the case for public transit to the airport? A We have over 11,000 parking spaces here and for three months of the year, there's no room. I don't want to build more parking spaces because I think it's a dumb thing to do and will encourage more people to bring cars here. We need two things: a Dorval Circle that works and a train that connects to downtown. Q The Caisse de dépot et placement is looking at funding the rail project. Do you think this is providing some new momentum? A It's interesting. They haven't progressed far. But from our perspective there should be better transit to the West Island that incorporates the airport. If the Caisse makes this happen, we're ready. We've done all sorts of ridership studies and feasibility studies, and we've given them all of it. Q You have a train station location that's ready in the centre of the airport? A Yes. In 2006, when we started the project to build out the U.S. jetty and a new hotel, we had a choice to make. We said: 'If we don't do this now, we're going to shut off any possibility of having a train station.' So the shell is there. We're parking cars in it now but it could be fitted out within a year and ready to roll.
  5. Premier épisode d’une série de quatre courts métrages documentaires sur les gratte-ciel, Terre retrace les origines de la tour d’habitation, depuis la tour de Babel de la Bible jusqu’aux immeubles locatifs de piètre qualité de la ville de New York. Narré par la chanteuse Feist, ce film a été réalisé par Katerina Cizek à partir des archives du New York Times. http://www.onf.ca/film/la_vie_a_la_verticale_partie1
  6. mont royal

    Urban renewal by demolition?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/12/us/blighted-cities-prefer-razing-to-rebuilding.html?nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20131112&_r=0 Absolutely fascinating article in the New York Times abut the demolition of inner city areas throughout the States. The figures for population exodus are staggering. It reminds me of Drapeau`s slum clearance programme here. . What is it now? 50 years later? And we still have great swaths of abandoned land along Rene Levesque ouest. Our urban challenges seem fairly minor compared to some.
  7. Source: Rue89 L’artiste Banksy a quelques trucs à dire sur la tour du One World Trade Center, qui vient d’être achevée. Sur son site internet, il a mis en ligne un billet sur le sujet, écrit sur une fausse une du New York Times. Il explique qu’il a proposé son texte aux pages opinion du New York Times mais que le journal l’a refusé – contactée par The Atlantic Wire, la rédaction n’a pas encore répondu. Le texte ? Une violente charge contre la tour qui remplace les tours jumelles détruites le 11 septembre 2001. Banksy, « en tournée » à New York, considère que ce monument est la plus « grande agression visuelle » de la ville et le surnomme le « shyscraper », jeu de mots avec « shy » (timide) et « skyscraper » (gratte-ciel). Extraits : « Cet immeuble est un désastre. Non, les désastres sont intéressants. Le One World Trade Center est un non-événement. C’est de la vanille. On dirait un truc construit au Canada. » [Le Canada n’est pas connu pour la beauté de ses gratte-ciels, ndlr] [...] « Ce qui est remarquable pour une structure de cette taille, c’est que le One World Trade Center manque de confiance en lui. Comment fait-il pour tenir sans colonne vertébrale ? On dirait qu’il n’a jamais voulu exister. Il vous rappelle ce grand gamin dans une soirée qui baisse ses épaules bizarrement pour ne pas émerger de la foule. C’est la première fois que je vois un gatte-ciel timide. » [...] « On pourrait voir le One World Trade Center comme une trahison de tous ceux qui ont perdu la vie le 11 septembre, car il proclame clairement que les terroristes ont gagné. Ces dix hommes nous ont condamnés à vivre dans un monde plus médiocre que celui qu’ils ont attaqué, au lieu d’être les catalyseurs d’un nouveau monde plus éblouissant. »
  8. Interesting article about our unique situation. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/02/world/americas/when-montreal-is-on-the-move-with-mattresses-and-dishwashers-in-tow.html?_r=0
  9. The most expensive tunnel in the world Jul 29th 2012, 17:28 by N.B. | WASHINGTON, D.C. EARLIER this month, Amtrak, America's government-owned passenger rail corporation, released a plan outlining how it's going to spend $151 billion it doesn't currently have (and has no prospect of receiving anytime soon) to bring true high-speed trains to America's crucial Boston-New York-Washington rail axis. Gulliver has already explained why Amtrak's project is ambitious, expensive, and unlikely. But the more you delve into the details of the plans, the sillier they appear. Take, for example, Amtrak's proposal to bore a 10-mile rail tunnel underneath Philadelphia. As Steve Stofka, a transport blogger, explains, this proposal would require the most expensive type of tunnel imaginable—"It is freaking expensive to bore a ten-mile-long tunnel through an alluvial floodplain under a highly urbanised area—and to maintain it, since it will reside below the water table," Mr Stofka writes. At $10 billion, he notes that the project would be about three times as expensive per mile as the Gotthard Base Tunnel under the Swiss Alps. And all this is for marginal improvements in speed and access. The tracks around and through Philadelphia aren't, generally, big obstacles to high-speed rail—the tunnels in and around Baltimore, Maryland are. It would be much cheaper to replace Baltimore's terrible tunnels than to build a fancy new one under Philadelphia. The Philadelphia tunnel, unfortunately, isn't even the worst part of Amtrak's plan. That honour goes to a $7 billion renovation of Washington's Union Station (pictured), which Slate's Matthew Yglesias rightly calls "insane". Amtrak's cost estimate is many times higher than for similar projects in Europe. And as Mr Yglesias notes, it seems that Amtrak doesn't have its priorities straight: [F]rom the look of Amtrak's proposal in addition to the high unit costs problem, there seems to be an awful lot of emphasis on doing stuff that has no really clear operational benefits. For example, they don't like the fact that right now Union Station's existing platforms have unsightly and inconvenient columns in the middle of them. To get rid of the columns, they need to scrap the 2,000-space parking deck that they're supporting. Then they want to replace the parking deck with a 5,000-space four-level underground garage. That's an awful lot of money to spend on something that has minimal operational value from the standpoint of actually operating a railroad. There's no doubt that America's big east-coast cities could benefit from access to true high-speed rail. But before it gets the funding necessary to make that happen, Amtrak should put forth a credible, smart proposal that puts the needs of passengers and the public first. I have taken Amtrak trains out of Union Station several hundred times. I've never given more than a moment's thought to the "unsightly and inconvenient" columns on the platforms, but I have noticed how trains crawl through the tunnels in Baltimore and move much more slowly, overall, than similar trains in Europe. Renovating Union Station and replacing its parking garage isn't likely to make Amtrak's trains go any faster. Amtrak needs to get a handle on which kind of projects are worth billions of taxpayer dollars—and which aren't. http://www.economist.com/blogs/gulliver/2012/07/rail-renovations
  10. Some of the measures in the Snøhetta concept sound familiar... http://nymag.com/arts/architecture/features/times-square-2012-4/ Could it become a place where New Yorkers actually want to hang out? By Justin Davidson Published Apr 15, 2012 Snøhetta's plan for Times Square: a low-key, pedestrian-friendly base for the riot of lights above. (Photo: Rendering courtesy of MIR) For two decades, New Yorkers have viewed Times Square as the city’s heart of brightness, a candy-colored hellhole to be avoided whenever possible. At either end of a workday or just before curtain time, we may dart and jostle past slow-moving out-of-towners, but the notion of meeting friends for dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe or whiling away a weekend afternoon held rapt by the symphony of screens doesn’t cross our minds. Starting next fall, workers with jackhammers will tear apart the bow tie, temporarily making it an even less congenial place to hang out. But one major goal of the $45 million construction project is to persuade New Yorkers to love Times Square—to convince them that it’s not just a backdrop for a million daily snapshots but Manhattan’s most central, and most convivial, gathering spot. Architects and visionaries have often addressed that old ambition with high-energy concepts that gave us the current high-tech razzmatazz. Even in this round of ideas, the city has fended off proposals for colored LEDs embedded in the pavement, for ramps, staircases, pavilions, digital information kiosks, heat lamps, trees, lawns, canopies, and, of course, more video screens. Instead, the city hired the architectural firm Snøhetta to produce a quiet, even minimal design that doesn’t try vainly to compete with the glowing canyons. Its beauty lies in dark, heavy sobriety and a desire to be a lasting pedestal to the frenzied dazzle above. In the most straightforward sense, the new plan enshrines a transformation that has already taken place. Ever since vehicles were banned from Broadway between 42nd and 47th Streets, in 2009, Times Square has felt like a temporary art installation. Pedestrians have been able to step off the curb and into the weirdly motor-free street. Rickety red café tables, which replaced plastic beach chairs, dot a blue river painted on the asphalt. Streetlights, lampposts, mailboxes, hydrants, and pay phones remain clustered along the Broadway sidewalk, staying clear of nonexistent traffic. The new construction will eliminate that feeling of making do. Curbs will vanish. Pedestrian areas will be leveled and clad in tweedy concrete tiles that run lengthwise down Broadway and the Seventh Avenue sidewalks, meeting in an angled confluence of patterns. Nickel-size steel discs set into the pavement will catch the light and toss it back into the brilliant air. Instead of perching on metal chairs, loiterers will be able to sit, lean, sprawl, jump, and stand on ten massive black granite benches up to 50 feet long and five feet wide. Electrical and fiber-optic-cable outlets will be packed into the benches so that, for outdoor performances, special-event crews will no longer need to haul in noisy, diesel-burning generators or drape the square in cables and duct tape. Even on ordinary days, the square will be de-*cluttered of the traffic signs, bollards, cones, and boxes that cause foot traffic to seize up. With any luck, crowds will gather and mingle only in the center plain between the benches, leaving free-flowing channels on either side for the rest of us, who have somewhere to be, people! Originally based in Norway and now firmly ensconced in New York, Snøhetta in 2008 created one of the most successful public spaces in recent memory: the pedestrian pathway that winds its way around, inside, in front of, and on top of the firm’s new opera house in Oslo. It’s a cosmopolitan yet utterly local place, an exquisite juncture of sea, sky, and glacier-like building, which seems to be slipping calmly into the fjord. It suggests that the architects understand the interaction of local culture and public space. “We’re not trying to make an instant photograph of happiness,” says the firm’s co-founder Craig Dykers, explaining that Times Square needs a little grit. “There’s been quite a lot done to make the city feel more delicate, which is good, but we shouldn’t forget its industrial history. At Times Square, there were rivets on the old marquees, the steelwork on the signs was industrial, and the lighting was naked bulbs. We want that whole history to be reflected in the experience of the space.” That may be a lot to ask of benches and pavers. Toys ’R’ Us isn’t slinking back to the suburbs, and all the happy, shiny logos won’t be dimming anytime soon. But Times Square has always reinvented itself every decade or two, and it may be shifting again. It’s been the epicenter of the media world, but Condé Nast will soon be moving to the World Trade Center, and Google has settled in Chelsea. In the nineties, Times Square lured law firms and financial outfits with the city’s freshest, most technologically advanced office towers, but new models inexorably supersede the old, and this time they’ll be in lower Manhattan and Hudson Yards. This is not to say that the glitter is flaking off, only that the least likely option for the future is stasis, so Snøhetta had to design a permanent platform for the unpredictable. There are two distinct approaches to public-space renovations: the grand design and the perpetual tweak. If Snøhetta is pursuing the first path, the apostle of the second is Daniel Biederman, who led the fabulously successful renovation of Bryant Park in the early nineties and has been managing it ever since, filling it with activities, temporary structures, and retro details. “If I were the czar of Times Square design, I would do the traditional stuff: plants, kiosks, movable seating, games, programming—small touches,” Biederman says. “Most people look down as far as two feet from the ground and up to fourteen feet off the ground, so at Times Square they have a chance to waste a ton of money on a surface that nobody’s going to see.” Yet Bryant Park’s charms don’t constitute a recipe. Times Square is not a graciously bounded piazza, and it shouldn’t be a verdant oasis. It’s an accidental wedge formed by two major avenues. Seventh Avenue will keep its traffic, and so will the cross streets. Even below ground, ancient water mains, electrical lines, telephone cables, subway tunnels, and long-buried trolley tracks tangle chaotically. The square’s getting a face-lift and major surgery at the same time. Quaintness has no place here. Every bit of this area acts as a showcase of some kind. The new design is to the street what the M&M’s store is to candy and Good Morning America is to television: an urban launchpad for a global commodity. In this case, the product is the philosophy of public space preached by the Bloomberg administration’s impassioned transportation commissioner, Janette *Sadik-Khan. For decades, American cities have treated their streets as traffic conduits meant to speed cars along as efficiently as possible (which is often not very efficiently at all). Instead, the new thinking goes, they should be a flexible network equally comfortable for drivers and dawdlers, parents with strollers, cyclists, truckers, and anyone who would rather just sit for a while and rest. Until 2009, the theater district embodied the disjunction between the way streets were conceived and the way they were used, as Sadik-Khan points out with data-driven fervor. “Times Square had 137 percent more accidents and crashes than any other avenue in the area,” she says of the way she found it when she took office in 2007. “It was a hot spot of congestion. You had 356,000 people coming through on foot every day and less than 10 percent of the space allocated to pedestrians. It wasn’t working, and it was a problem that had been lying in plain sight for 200 years.” You remember: Crowds spilled over the curbs into the street, gridlock stranded taxis in the triangular crossroads, and hurried theatergoers battled through the stationary herds. The Times Square Alliance, which represents local businesses, suggested an incremental solution: Widen the sidewalks a little bit. Sadik-Khan one-upped them and completely closed five blocks of Broadway to traffic. The result was a harvest of happy data: fewer accidents, cleaner air, more satisfied survey respondents, and popular events like the Summer Solstice free yoga classes that last year attracted 6,000 people. (The 2012 edition takes place on June 20.) Clearing out cars also brought a surprising economic roar. Before, annual commercial rents in the area averaged about $800 per square foot. Last week, the eyewear emporium Oakley opened a new store, paying about $1,400 per square foot. Everyone in the Bloomberg administration is watching the countdown to the end of the mayor’s term, and Sadik-Khan’s Department of Transportation seems to be rushing to set her revolution in concrete so that her successor can’t merely paint it over. Times Square is only the most visible representative of a program that spans all five boroughs: Another 50 permanent plaza renovations are completed or in the works, from Madison Square to Myrtle Avenue in Brooklyn and Roberto Clemente Plaza in the Bronx. Uncharacteristically for a city agency, the DOT is resisting uniformity, trying to gear each project to local desires, so the Snøhetta design won’t be an archetype, but it will be a much-*scrutinized example. Tourists already make the crossroads of the world an obligatory visit, but Tim Tompkins, the president of the Times Square Alliance, wants to change both the composition of the crowds and the reasons they come. “Ten years from now, we want people to want to see what public art is happening here,” he says. There is of course the possibility that a rejuvenated Times Square will appeal to New Yorkers so intensely that it will once again become as unbearably crowded as it was before. That’s a risk the city is willing to take.
  11. http://www.nytimes.com/slideshow/2012/04/15/fashion/20120415-FORAGING.html For decades, period architecture and pristine cobblestone streets have kept Old Montreal well trodden by tourists. But this gracious waterfront area, dating back centuries, is regaining cachet with locals, and high-end retail has followed. A western stretch of narrow Rue St. Paul, where souvenir shops once hawked Québécois kitsch, has become an unlikely hub for high fashion. Huge picture windows in restored stone buildings now showcase of-the-moment looks to rival the hippest that New York or Paris have to offer — all with an insouciant Montreal twist. — MICHAEL KAMINER Credit: Yannick Grandmont for The New York Times
  12. ça coute cher

    why bilinguals are smarter

    interesting article in the ny times http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/18/opinion/sunday/the-benefits-of-bilingualism.html?src=me&ref=general
  13. Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/business/Montreal+severely+unaffordable/4167729/story.html#ixzz1CBr3AL86
  14. Gazette begins charging for website access May 25, 2011 – 6:54 am| Posted in Media Publisher Alan Allnutt announced in Wednesday's paper that The Gazette is moving back to a paid model for its website. Based on a similar move by the New York Times earlier this year, montrealgazette.com will have a metered paywall, which allows a certain number of free articles a month and then charges for access beyond that. The model is designed to get heavy users to pay for content while not discouraging occasional readers who might reach an article through a Google search or a blog link. The system, which is managed by Press+ and expected to be running by the end of the day, will allow 20 free articles a month, then charge $6.95 a month (or $69.95 a year) for access. This compares to $26.19/month for six-day print delivery or $9.95/month for the Digital Edition. Print subscribers will, once they register, have unlimited access to online content. The meter will only apply to "premium" content from The Gazette and Postmedia News, including photo galleries and videos. "Major" breaking news stories, blogs and content on affiliated websites like Hockey Inside/Out and West Island Gazette Plus won't be subject to the meter. It's unclear whether other wire copy (Reuters, AFP, etc.) will apply. Wire stories, including those from Postmedia News, Reuters and Agence France-Presse, will count toward the meter, even though many of those are freely available elsewhere. Users of the iPad app will not be metered. Nor will mobile users. "A great deal has been written about the economics of publishing newspapers in 2011," Allnutt writes. "The 'old' model - selling newsprint products very cheaply to readers and selling the audience to advertisers for the majority of income - is increasingly challenged. Simply transferring advertisers from print to online may not work for all. In order to continue our investment in the quality and depth of our award-winning journalism and offer you the features and functions you want from our website, we believe we have to find new sources of revenue." Once upon a time, The Gazette used to charge for online access, under a model similar to what Le Devoir uses today: Some articles free, but most completely locked down behind a paywall, with only the first paragraph available to non-subscribers. Like the Times, The Gazette abandoned this model with the hope that increased advertising revenue would be more profitable than the subscriber revenue that comes out of the paywall. The big question, of course, is whether or not this will work. The Times got 100,000 subscribers in its first month (most of those at 99 cents for four weeks), but its model isn't universally loved, and it has been criticized as being too loose and having too many loopholes. More importantly, there are still plenty of free sources of local, national and international news online, so paid sites need a significant amount of original content that can't be found elsewhere. People aren't going to pay for stories about highway crashes, politics and press releases they can get from six different sources. There's also the added difficulty that, as part of the Postmedia Network, The Gazette shares content with websites of other newspapers, and those newspapers share content with it. Charging for a Gazette article will be pointless if it can be found unmetered on ottawacitizen.com. The Victoria Times-Colonist is also moving to a metered system (one that charges print subscribers as well), but other Postmedia websites are not. Postmedia is waiting to see how The Gazette and the Times-Colonist fare. Of course, as much as I'm a fan of an open Internet and getting things for free, being a Gazette employee I stand to benefit indirectly if this results in a lot of new revenue. So subscribe away! A page of frequently asked questions has been posted, and subscriptions are being taken. UPDATE: Some early reaction from Twitter. As you can imagine a lot of it is negative (or at least sarcastic): trelayne: #Montreal Gazette going to "meter" your access to 10 views/month, then U pay! cooky-clueless readers R screwed justinCgio: Without debate @mtlgazette moves to a "metered" model. $6.95 per month after free 20 articles. #media #nevergoingtopay ArcadiaMachine: I guess I'll be reading Cyberpresse a lot more from now on. MsWendyKH: Check it: @MtlGazette adopts French literacy program! jacobserebrin: The Gazette is setting up a paywall. Why? Gaz has little pull, isn't the NY Times. Other Postmedia sites still giving away same content. codejill: I could imagine paying that for a coalition of papers, but not for the gazette all by itself... NathalieCollard: Ouf! Bonne chance! conradbuck: So they'll start writing premium content? justinCgio: In a job interview with @mtlgazette I brought up how the #RSS feeds were broken and how the web wasn't live enough. Now you want me to pay? ALundyGlobal: Interested to see results in a few months Sita311: #lame I'd put up with advertisement if would remain free. Andrew_MTL: great, that's a simple delete from my bookmarks. PLENTY of credible news resources for free. You going to charge for tweets too? ikenney: Goodbye Montreal Gazette. I won't be reading you anymore!! montrealmarc: People respect the truth. You should just admit that you need the money, not that u r following NY Times business model. tomhawthorn: What will readers do to get around paywall? Whatever it takes. Or they will go elsewhere. They will not pay. noahtron: the #paywall put up by @mtlgazette will certainly help increase readership... just cuz it works for @nytimes doesn't mean it works for you! AVassiliou: We have to pay for @mtlgazette on-line now?? #hugefail Fortunately, plenty of free news sites remain. Times must be tough for @mtlgazette finnertymike: Re Montreal Gazette paywall: current online offer not wow, plus @Cyberpresse outstanding and free. Subscriber interest likely tiny methinks finnertymike: Re MTL Gazette paywall 2: Need an online strategy beyond "Ok, pay now": must-read voices? multimedia/graphics? liveblogs? pizazz? delmarhasissues: Hilarious that The Gazette cites The NY Times when justifying charging for online content. I'll pay for The Times. YOU'RE NOT THE TIMES! jfmezei: Unless all Postmedia papers lock down, people will just go to other postmedia sites to get the exact same news. montrealmarc: All the big newspapers need to meet like the heads of the 5 families in "The Godfather" & make a group agreement to all go metered furry_princess: There's a reason I stopped subscribing to the Gazoo back in 2002. #tabloidfluff JulienMcEvoy: Voir une annonce «The Gazette cherche un(e) directeur(trice) du marketing» le jour où ils annoncent leur paywall, c'est comme ironique. Milnoc: The Gazette already lost me as a reader years ago @finnertymike. What makes them think a paywall will encourage me to come back? Sheesh! aranr: The Gazette's paywall scheme is so misguided. I'd pay to read their HockeyInsideOut mini-site but not the paper itself. #montreal cdiraddo: So now that @mtlgazette has started to meter their site, it means I will no longer link to them in fear that they may ask my visitors to pay jesspatterson: how else are they to pay their costs? gotta come from somewhere. spafax_arjun: If the Montreal Gazette wants people to pay for the content online it needs to step up its game by 2000% The comments on the story on The Gazette's website are even worse (and less grammatically correct), as are those on the Times-Colonist story. There's also some reaction on The Gazette's Facebook page. Other coverage from: The Globe and Mail The CBC (Comments there are similarly not very nice) Presse canadienne Canadian Press Global Montreal Financial Post Métro J-Source UPDATE (May 26): Postmedia boss Paul Godfrey was on Toronto's Metro Morning to explain the paywall deal. Summarized by J-Source. Tags: newspapers, paywalls, The Gazette, Victoria Times-Colonist | Short URL for this post: http://fagstein.com/?p=10546 http://blog.fagstein.com/2011/05/25/gazette-charging-for-online/
  15. Coup d'éclat dans la Grosse Pomme Marie-Joëlle Parent NEW YORK – Les créatures étranges de Tourisme Montréal ont réussi un coup d’éclat dans la Grosse Pomme. La nouvelle campagne marketing pour attirer les touristes américains dans la métropole a retenu l’attention du New York Times. Il est souvent question de Montréal ces derniers temps dans le New York Times. On parle des chefs montréalais qui rayonnent de Manhattan à Brooklyn, de la nouvelle salle de l’OSM, du Cirque du Soleil et de Robert Lepage. Cette fois, on parle des nombreux festivals dans un article publié sur le site web du quotidien, mercredi. Tourisme Montréal et l’agence de création Sid Lee se réjouissent de cette vitrine inespérée pour la métropole. Les États-Unis demeurent le principal marché de Montréal. «On parle d’un million de touristes comparativement à 20 000 touristes qui viennent de Chine, c’est énorme, et ce, malgré la question du passeport à la frontière et le prix de l’essence», a expliqué Emmanuelle Legault, directrice des communications de Tourisme Montréal. «Le «feed-back» est vraiment bon, surtout du côté des médias. C’est comme si le New York Times nous donne en quelque sorte le sceau d’approbation avec ce papier. C’est quand même un des journaux les plus influents au pays», a expliqué Stéphanie Preston de la firme de relations publiques Laura Davidson à New York. La firme a été engagée par Tourisme Montréal pour promouvoir cette campagne de 6 millions $ qui vise les villes de New York, Boston, Chicago et la Californie. «Comme 2010 a été une année excellente pour le tourisme, on a pu réinjecter des fonds dans une campagne sur plusieurs plateformes», a expliqué Mme Legault. «On a choisi une approche beaucoup plus «Edgy» cette année», a précisé Stéphane Alozi, Vice-Président contenu chez SidLee avec qui Tourisme Montréal travaille depuis cinq ans. Sid Lee vient d’ailleurs d’ouvrir une cinquième branche à Austin au Texas. Ils ont choisi de créer des figurines hybrides pour véhiculer les différents événements qui se dérouleront à Montréal. «On les surnomme les «crocotames», chacun représente un thème concret, comme le jazz, la mode, l’humour, etc.» Des cartons grandeur nature de ces créatures se sont promenés un peu partout à Manhattan et Brooklyn il y deux semaines pour montrer les couleurs de Montréal. La campagne intitulée Montreal : a new breed of culture. Where 106 eclectic festivals coexist met l’accent sur les 106 festivals qu’offre Montréal, comme le Jazz, les FrancoFolies, Juste pour Rire, mais aussi des événements temporaires comme Totem du Cirque du Soleil ou Indiana Jones et l’Aventure archéologique au Centre des Sciences. Bref, on veut véhiculer le message qu’en termes de tourisme, Montréal est un «animal» culturel d’une espèce rare. Les salles de rédaction de New York ont d’ailleurs reçu des cartons de ces figurines. Les publicités se retrouvent dans le New York Post, le New York Times, dans le Chicago Tribune, dans le Condenast Traveler, le New Yorker, GQ, le magazine Bon Appétit et sur des sites web comme Blackbook.mag, nymag.com et les réseaux sociaux. «À New York, être vu ce n’est pas simple, a expliqué Stéphane Alozi. Le but était de faire comprendre qu’à Montréal on peut s’amuser, que c’est convivial, que c’est une ville qui attire les courants créatifs, un peu comme à Marseille, où les touristes viennent pour les gens et les festivals.» http://fr.canoe.ca/voyages/decouvrir/destinations/archives/2011/06/20110601-220331.html
  16. WestAust

    Le "Times Square" de Montreal

    Voici ce que je ferais pour que Montreal aie son times square une belle renovation de la tour ou rogers est actuellement passer de cela (ok un vague dessin) a cela, ou les sections en rouge seraient des ecrans animés.
  17. Cyrus

    World War III is coming!

    Oooh that is not good: http://www.dailynk.com/english/read.php?cataId=nk00100&num=7051 http://www.dailynk.com/english/read.php?cataId=nk00400&num=7050 If they had decided to make their megalopolis somewhere reasonable in the south instead of in that sleepy little town it would be so much easier to have taken care of this problem decades ago...
  18. Une imitation de Times Square au centre-ville ? Kathleen Lévesque Édition du mardi 26 juin 2007 Mots clés : Times Square, écran géant, Busac, Construction, Montréal L'installation d'un écran électronique géant pourrait bientôt être autorisée Photo: Pedro Ruiz Le centre-ville de Montréal pourrait bientôt prendre une allure clinquante à la façon de Times Square, à New York. L'arrondissement Ville-Marie s'apprête à autoriser l'installation d'un écran électronique géant avec publicités, vidéos et messages qui défilent, a appris Le Devoir. L'immense écran électronique trônerait sur l'immeuble situé au 1200, McGill College, une avenue de prestige bordée au sud par la Place Ville-Marie et tournée au nord vers le mont Royal. showBigBox(); C'est le promoteur immobilier Busac, celui-là même qui a mené le projet de l'îlot Voyageur constituant un dérapage financier pour l'UQAM, qui talonne depuis plusieurs mois l'arrondissement Ville-Marie afin de changer les règles d'affichage publicitaire. L'insistance de Busac semble donner des résultats. Selon le scénario privilégié par l'arrondissement, le conseil de Ville-Marie pourrait donner son aval à un changement réglementaire en août. L'équipe du maire de l'arrondissement, Benoit Labonté, a jusqu'au premier juillet pour inscrire le projet à l'ordre du jour de l'assemblée. Il s'agirait de permettre un projet-pilote d'une année. «Les élus doivent prendre une décision rapidement. Si cela se fait, il y aura des revenus pour l'arrondissement. Et le type d'affichage devra être soumis à des règles», a expliqué au Devoir le directeur des affaires publiques de l'arrondissement, Jean-Yves Duthel. Ce dernier estime qu'il s'agirait d'un nouveau champ de revenus fort intéressant pour Montréal. Selon le pourcentage négocié avec Busac, Ville-Marie pourrait empocher quelque 200 000 $ par année, par écran géant. Cela semble s'inscrire dans un contexte où Montréal est aux prises avec des difficultés financières et souhaite diversifier ses sources de revenus. Le gouvernement du Québec a d'ailleurs déposé jeudi dernier un projet de loi donnant entre autres choses de nouveaux pouvoirs de taxation (divertissement et stationnements commerciaux) à la Ville de Montréal. Outre les règles d'urbanisme qui interdisent les écrans électroniques géants, un autre obstacle se pose. La Charte de la Ville de Montréal ne permet pas que la municipalité puisse bénéficier de redevances sur le domaine privé. Ainsi, le projet de Busac devra être soumis à l'approbation du conseil municipal qui pourrait ainsi demander une modification à sa loi constituante. Le changement législatif qui en découlerait pourrait être adopté en décembre par l'Assemblée nationale et entrer en vigueur dès 2008, selon ce que prévoit Ville-Marie. Au-delà des revenus anticipés, l'arrondissement Ville-Marie aimerait profiter de cet écran géant pour diffuser de l'information destinée aux citoyens, comme la tenue de certains événements. Or l'arrondissement Ville-Marie planifie déjà depuis plus d'un an la construction d'un édifice (vitrine culturelle) dans le contexte plus large du développement du Quartier des spectacles. L'immeuble s'élèverait au coin des rues Sainte-Catherine et Saint-Laurent avec en façade, un écran surdimensionné destiné uniquement aux événements culturels. Le projet de Busac est d'une autre nature. Pour André Poulin, directeur général de Destination centre-ville, une société de développement commercial représentant 8000 commerces, l'écran sur McGill College serait «un irritant inquiétant». «Si on veut une qualité de vie, il ne faut pas imiter ce que les grandes villes font. Venir au centre-ville de Montréal, ce n'est pas pour être assailli par de la pollution visuelle. Il faut protéger les gens contre l'envahissement commercial», croit M. Poulin. Ce dernier se questionne également sur le problème de sécurité que pourrait engendrer la présence d'un écran électronique. Il croit que les automobilistes pourraient être distraits par la diffusion des publicités et des messages à lire. Les affiches lumineuses, les écrans électroniques géants et les néons publicitaires sont chose courante dans plusieurs grandes villes du monde, notamment sur le continent asiatique. Times Square, à New York, demeure toutefois le quartier le plus célèbre pour son animation et sa démesure. En 2000, un nouvel écran, haut de plus de 36 mètres, a été construit au coût de 37 millions de dollars. NASDAQ loue l'emplacement pour plus de 2 millions par année. À Montréal, le projet de Busac pourrait ouvrir la porte à une avalanche de demandes similaires. Busac, qui est une filiale d'une entreprise new-yorkaise installée ici depuis 1998, a de l'ambition. En moins de dix ans, Busac s'est hissée parmi les douze plus grands propriétaires immobiliers au Québec. Elle a acquis des immeubles comme le 1200, MGill College, la Place Dupuis et l'immeuble voisin (888, de Maisonneuve Est) où loge le maire Benoit Labonté et la fonction publique de l'arrondissement Ville-Marie. Busac n'a pas rappelé Le Devoir hier
  19. MtlMan

    Tremblay vante Montréal à NY

    Ce n'est pas tant pour Tremblay à NY que je poste ça, mais pour ce que j'ai surligné. Les New-Yorkais aiment Mtl...... http://fr.canoe.ca/infos/quebeccanada/archives/2010/09/20100930-163213.html
  20. China's nine-day traffic jam stretches 100km (AFP) – 16 hours ago BEIJING — Thousands of vehicles were bogged down Monday in a more than 100-kilometre (62-mile) traffic jam leading to Beijing that has lasted nine days and highlights China's growing road congestion woes. The Beijing-Tibet expressway slowed to a crawl on August 14 due to a spike in traffic by cargo-bearing heavy trucks heading to the capital, and compounded by road maintenance work that began five days later, the Global Times said. The state-run newspaper said the jam between Beijing and Jining city had given birth to a mini-economy with local merchants capitalising on the stranded drivers' predicament by selling them water and food at inflated prices. That stretch of highway linking Beijing with the northern province of Hebei and the Inner Mongolia region has become increasingly prone to massive jams as the capital of more than 20 million people sucks in huge shipments of goods. Traffic slowed to a snail's pace in June and July for nearly a month, according to earlier press reports. The latest clog has been worsened by the road improvement project, made necessary by highway damage caused by a steady increase in cargo traffic, the Global Times said. China has embarked in recent years on a huge expansion of its national road system but soaring traffic periodically overwhelms the grid. The congestion was expected to last into mid-September as the road project will not be finished until then, the newspaper said. The roadway is a major artery for the supply of produce, coal and other goods to Beijing. Video: http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/World-News/A-100km-Long-Traffic-Jam-In-Beijing-Enters-Its-Ninth-Day-And-Could-Continue-For-A-Month/Article/201008415702670?lpos=World_News_First_Home_Article_Teaser_Region_4&lid=ARTICLE_15702670_A_100km-Long_Traffic_Jam_In_Beijing_Enters_Its_Ninth_Day_And_Could_Continue_For_A_Month
  21. jesseps

    Decarie Square

    (Courtesy of The Montreal Gazette) I removed most parts of the article that aren't really speaking about the Decarie Square project. Plus he voices his opinion on office towers here in Montreal.
  22. jesseps

    CBSA is on Twitter

    So next time your crossing the border check out Twitter for the times. http://twitter.com/CBSA_BWT
  23. SPQR

    Short term rentals

    Hello, I'll be in montreal this summer for about 2 months and i'd like to know if there are any affordable apartments I can rent in downtown. The school I'll go to has 2 options, homestay and residences. I stayed at the mcgill residences the first time and well, didn't like the shared bathroom, lack of A/C and the fact that it was extremely small, specially for 700 bucks a month. Homestay could be good, specially for practicing my french but a lot of times the families you stay with are not in montreal but in the suburbs and I like to go out so I don't if there are curfews or something, I mean I don't think I can go back home drunk at 5 am. So can you guys help me out?
  24. (Courtesy of Gothamist) I know its New York, but its interesting to see the DOT wants to do something like this.