Maisonneuve

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About Maisonneuve

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  • Biography
    Montréal
  • Location
    Montréal
  • Interests
    architecture, sports, business, politics
  • Occupation
    design

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  1. A photo like this, from the MUHC to the Jacques-Cartier Bridge, ten years from now is going to make the skyline more stretched out. More Chicago-like (spread out) and less Los Angeles-like (concentrated).
  2. If Montreal wanted to build something more substantial for cycling than Norreport Station, and do something else above ground, they could do like Strawinskylaan Bicycle Parking in Amsterdam. Bikes could be parked underground:
  3. This site would be good as a large bicycle parking plaza, for the same reasons as those mentioned in the article above. Similar to Nørreport Station in Copanhagen, it would frequently have buses passing by, with a subway underneath. That whole block, including the bus terminus, would be an even larger transportation hub than it is now. And a cycling plaza does not have to be a concrete slab with bike racks, but it does not have to be over designed either. This is what it looks like in Nørreport Station:
  4. There should be regular train service between both Burlington and Plattsburgh to Montreal. Those cities are our U.S suburbs! And the North County Chamber of Commerce in Plattsburgh sees themselves as that.
  5. This is exactly what I was thinking last week. There are many ways to make money off of a condo, other than renting it out to someone who lives there permanently. I met a real estate agent about two months ago who was selling a unit in the McGill and Wellington area. He was telling me of all the different options he sees owners renting their units: International or out-of-province students: 3 to 4 students pool resources to rent out condo units (many times the condo was purchased by one of the parents of the students in the unit) Professionals: After late nights working in the core, professionals rent units during the week, and save the long commute back to the exurbs for Friday. Companies: When companies bring employees in from other offices outside Montreal, or bring consultants in from abroad...when these people will be staying for long periods of time, it is more economical for companies to rent a condo than place them in hotel rooms for hundreds of dollars a night. Obviously, how you rent it and to who depends on the unit, and your comfort level. But there are people willing and able to pay, you just need people who know how to find them.
  6. I've never seen a condo tower take so long to finish. TDC3 will top out before TOM is completely finished (I am joking of course).
  7. This is a powerful project. Turning a whole street, of that importance, into pedestrian only. This is the type of move that other cities only talk about, but never manage to do, or if they do it, scale it back. This is larger than when New York turned 7th Avenue in Times Square pedestrian only. There are many urban planners who say that Montreal has some of the best public spaces of any city in Canada. It will be something special when this project is completed, and the Esplanade Clark too, to add to the collection of public spaces that we have right now, especially downtown/Old Montreal. New condo towers are great, but all of these new public spaces are just some of the necessary components the city needs to attract and retain people living downtown. Add some schools, more grocery stores/pharmacies at the base of those condos, and as Dave Van Horne use to say, we'll be UP, UP, AND AWAY!!!!!
  8. I think you guys (and ladies too I'm sure) let mark_ac rile you up too much. I use to get mad at him too, but it's better to talk about how people actually live their lives and make decisions, which can be messy and complicated, rather than stats that matter mostly to economists. All the premier city-second city discussions aside, what stats about people moving to a city never show is the failures or outcomes that are not ideal. Not everyone who moves to Montreal from another part of Canada, the US, or abroad has a success story. Some people come here and fail, or their plans get derailed by....life. Some just fail miserably. Others come here and succeed wonderfully. Montreal is no different than other cities when it comes to this. The problem with these "stats show people are moving to city X,Y" articles is that they assume that all those outcomes are successful. That all those people found what they were looking for in their new city. This is not reality. We mostly hear about the success stories, what people would have you believe on their social media profiles, or what boosters of a city would have you believe. We mostly hear: I moved to LA to become an actor, and after a few months, I got a part in a TV show. We rarely hear: I moved to LA to become an actor, but it didn't work out. I'm a car salesman now or I'm just a waitress. We mostly hear: I moved to Toronto and got a job with a fintech startup downtown. We rarely hear: I moved to Toronto and got a job with a fintech startup downtown, but had to get a second job just to make ends meet. We mostly hear(from Montreal International or Contact MTL): I moved to Montreal to take a job with a gaming company from the UK that just opened up shop. We rarely hear (from Montreal International or Contact MTL): I moved to Montreal to take a job with a gaming company from the UK that just opened up shop, but the company cut back its Montreal operations after a year because it was getting mired in too much local red tape. When people leave NEW YORK, where do they go? Austin, Texas....Charlotte, North Carolina....Savannah, Georgia....Los Angeles and other points in between. So people are leaving Montreal? I'm sure they are. As I said in a previous post, people are always leaving cities for other cities for all types of reasons, sometimes without considering the practical pros/cons of their new city, because they assumed it would work out. But cost of living alone, will have some of those people returning to Montreal, and we will never know because the stats consider such people as NEW. Some will return to a better Montreal that is not such of a giant chantier de construction!! And that is not wishful thinking. People do come back and don't regret it. I'm one of them.
  9. I agree with mark_ac. I wouldn't call it Fake News, but I do think that English Quebec media tends to skew stories , as all media do. For example, if an undercover reporter in the English media visited 100 stores in Montreal, and managed to get service in French in 90 stores, their story would be French is Being Use in 9 of 10 Montreal Stores. But if an undercover reporter in the French media did the same experiment, their story would be Le Francais Est Seulement Utilisé dans 9 de 10 magasins Montréalais? That's the nature of the media where we live. Some places in this world it is left-right, protestant-catholic, sunny-shia, muslim-hindu and other combinations. In our corner of the world it is English-French. C'est la vie. But I don't worry about people leaving Quebec, because cost of living alone will have those people coming back to Quebec in several years time after they "make a go" in another province. And the way the stats get skewed, the people who leave and come back get counted as New when they are not really New. And everyone is "leaving" somewhere. How many "Millennials are leaving Vancouver" type articles have been published for the past few years? At least a half dozen. And anecdotally, I know quite a few Vancourites that are moving here. Whether they are native to Van City or former Montrealers, I don't know. So I take these "people are leaving [fill in the blank city]" articles with a grain of salt. And stats can be skewed and they make things simplistic. It is not as simple as saying people are leaving a city because of problem A, B, C, and D and people are moving to a city because of D, E, F, and G. You get a better idea of why people leave or move to a city by talking to them about their everyday practical experience, not some intangible stat. I have a friend who lives in Syracuse, New York who is African American. He had many friends who lived in New York City, who were also African American, who decided to move down south (African Americans leaving NYC in the tens of thousands for the Carolinas, Georgia, and Florida has been a thing for about a decade or more). It is said that they left NYC because it is too expensive even in the suburbs, houses are cheaper down south, less taxes, and less traffic/congestion. What my friend told me was that he thought of moving too, but things don't always turn out as well as they would hope. Sure, there is more house for your buck in Atlanta than Brooklyn, but jobs are harder to get down south if you are not from down south. People there like to hire other southerners like them, even if they happen to be the same race. Now these people don't necessarily move back to NYC, but it serves as an example to remind people that the grass may be greener on the other side, but how much greener is it really? If the grass is greener with a smaller yard, can you live with that? If the greener grass is bordered by concrete walls, whereas at home you had great views, can you live with that? People often overlook the practical day-to-day experience of moving to a city. The streets of Los Angeles are full of people who thought they knew the city they moved to and the promise it would offer them, but things don't always pan out. Don't let stats or people's public image on social media fool you: things don't always pan out. As far as our situation here in Montreal, things can always be better, as is the case in any city. But I left Montreal a decade ago for Toronto and lived there for a few years. I loved Toronto, wanted to stay there, not because I hated Montreal, but it was fun getting to know the ins and outs of Toronto. Learn its strengths, its weakness, its people, etc. But the way things worked out, several years ago I had to come back to Montreal. As much as I love Toronto, I can tell you the practical negatives of living in that city as good as I can tell you Montreal's. That's why when I visit Toronto, I'm ironically happy that I moved back to Montreal. For example, many condo towers in Toronto are built on Yonge. If you fly into Billy Bishop and look out the window as the plane lands, there is a canyon of condos stretching from the Lake Ontario to Steeles Avenue. A top selling point for condos on Yonge is that they are on the Yonge-University subway line (they gave them numbers now to be like New York: a typical Toronto gesture. When they don't copy NYC, they copy Montreal) for people's convenience. There is one big problem: during the morning rush hour it is not convenient. If you live at Yonge and Bloor and you work at King and Bay, the subway is already packed by the time it gets to Yonge and Bloor, by people who thought the same thing - that living on the subway line will be convenient to get to work/school, etc... And when I say packed, I mean can't step on packed. Let 2 or 3 trains pass before I get on packed. And that was 10 years ago with less condos on Yonge, so today it must be even worse (I guess people take Uber and get stuck in traffic on Bayview or the DVP now). Sure, Tory says he will build a Downtown Relief Line, but Toronto needs 6 Downtown Relief Lines. One flaw Toronto has is public transit: they have New York City geographic scale, but a subway system slightly bigger than Montreal's. What Toronto needs is a New York scale of a subway system, but Ontario is broke now, and that will never happen. That's why the day the REM opens cue the stories in the Star, Sun, and Globe and Mail of "How come Montreal built the REM and we can't even...." And if Plante somehow manages to get her Pink Line built, I would hate to be a Toronto mayor explaining to his or her constituents ( Jennifer Keesmaat maybe)why the second largest city in the country can manage to build two substantial subway (type) lines, but all we can get from Ford is money to built one Downtown Relief Line? Lack of scale of Toronto's subway system, and how that can influence how you get to work or a meeting, is a practical negative that I wouldn't expect a Montrealer or Vancouverite who wants to move to Toronto to understand, until they live there. That's what I try to tell my Toronto friends who visit Montreal and want to live here because they love the vibe: You want to move to Montreal? Well, take the bus or metro, speak to the STM worker in English, and after he tells you off, tell me if you still like Montreal. Oh, and just try driving around from point A to point B without being Detoured, Rue Barréd, or throwing up because your car hit a million potholes, and then tell me if you like Montreal....Some of them say they still like it. I say: You guys are crazy man! Congratulations, you are now genuine Montrealers! lol
  10. Yes, California and New York have lost millions of people over the last ten years to more affordable places with less tax like Texas, Florida, Georgia, and the Carolinas. They mainly attract the wealthiest who can afford living there.
  11. It will be fascinating to see how they will renovate the Big O. Hopefully they can be inspired by the Olympiastadion Berlin. Built in 1936, renovated in 2004. A renovated Big O should have less of a 1970s feel and colour scheme.
  12. I prefer the first version too, even if the towers required more creativity. It would have made more of an impact overall on the downtown area. This supposed new version looks like something they would build in Longueuil or Dix30. This is very disappointing. Then again, we trust that Montrealers who live in that area know what's best for their neighbourhood.
  13. Once the Turcot is completed and the new highway 20 is open, there are plans to develop the land where the existing highway is. That land between the new highway 20 and the canal. Does anyone have any knowledge about serious plans or intentions to develop that land? My desire is for that land to be zoned for buildings taller than the St. Jacques Escarpment. I would prefer a mixed-use master-planned neigbourhood like CityPlace or Concord Pacific Place. It would be a nice way to stretch the skyline of Montreal, because west of Westmount Square there are few tall buildings. Having a mixed-use master-planned neigbourhood would be better than an industrial no-mans land.