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Found 18 results

  1. ‘Major renovations’ planned for Guy-Concordia station Reported on December 13, 2011 With a well-publicized cockroach problem, extensive water damage and what look like stalactites dripping from the ceiling, Guy-Concordia, Montreal’s third busiest metro station, will receive some much-needed repairs next year. “This is a major renovation,” said Marianne Rouette, a spokeswoman for the Société de transport de Montréal. “Due to the station’s state of degradation, and on the recommendation of our inspectors, we chose to prioritize renovations at Guy-Concordia in 2012.” Calling the station “safe,” Rouette said that the repairs would be part of a recently approved $250 million program to repair stations “at the end of their useful lives.” Work is set to start in January, when the STM will double the number of turnstiles at the heavily used Guy Street exit. Used by the majority of the eight million riders who pass through the station annually, the new turnstiles will connect directly to two Concordia buildings. The station’s other exit will undergo yearlong repairs. As of March, access via St-Mathieu St. will be closed for six months as the exit’s doors, lighting, ventilation, and drainage systems are replaced. The STM’s neglect of Guy-Concordia stands in stark contrast with the area above the station, where gleaming new university buildings and an ever-expanding network of tunnels have put record demand on the metro. “The university doesn’t know much about what is going on with the metro station,” said Jean-Philippe Plourde. “We are always trying to find out more, but we haven’t had much shared with us.” Plourde, the co-coordinator at Allégo Concordia, a program established by the Quebec government to encourage sustainable transportation at the university, wasn’t aware of the pending plans to temporarily close the St-Mathieu Street exit. (Concordia University spokesperson Chris Mota said she was also unaware of the plans.) “Guy-Concordia doesn’t help with the whole image of going underground,” said Plourde. “It can be uncomfortably warm, unclean and people are often sleeping on benches. No one will stop using the metro because of water leakages, but it’s part of a larger problem.” According to Plourde, 14 per cent of Concordia’s 50,000 students and staff still drive to the university daily. “That’s a lot of people for a university with two campuses that are well connected by metro and multiple bus lines,” said Plourde, citing a university survey from 2008. His goal is to lower that number. As an example of the lack of coordination between the STM and Concordia, Plourde points to yellow tape that has stopped riders from using the station’s main Guy exit since October. The university has been renovating the pavilion built on top of the metro station but the exit is scheduled to reopen in January, the same time the transit authority plans to start its own renovations. “Concordia closed the exit for security reasons, because they were worried about all the foot traffic walking under construction,” said Plourde. “You would think that the STM would have used the opportunity to do some work, but they didn’t.” Plourde did not want to comment on the STM’s plans without more specific information, however he expressed concern about the lack of elevators in the renovations. Concordia University student and The Link columnist Riley Sparks (who's written about Guy-Concordia's cockroach problem) doesn’t have much faith in the proposed renos, which include a series of functional repairs to the station’s lighting and ventilation. The STM has been short on details about any aesthetic changes to fix the leaking walls and ceilings. “I’ll believe it when I see it,” said Sparks. “A bunch of metro stations have been under renovation for a while and based on the rate of repairs, I won’t hold my breath. “I don’t understand how the STM renovates stations. They shut down Villa-Maria all summer, it didn’t look great at the start of the summer and it didn’t look great at the end of the summer.” Under the STM’s current plan, access to the St-Mathieu St. exit will be closed from March 5 to August 26, 2012. http://montreal.openfile.ca/montreal/text/%E2%80%98major-renovations%E2%80%99-planned-guy-concordia-station
  2. (Courtesy of The Montreal Gazette) I'll post my comment soon, stuck doing some paper work right now
  3. Stewart Museum shuts for $4.5-million refit To reopen in 2010; military drills continue The Gazette Published: 9 hours ago The Stewart Museum in the Old Fort on Île Ste. Hélène has closed for 18 months for a $4.5-million renovation program. The museum, which attracts about 60,000 visitors a year, is housed in a 188-year-old building that needs to be upgraded to meet 21st-century standards. "It means bringing the building up to scratch," said Bruce Bolton, executive director of the Macdonald Stewart Foundation, which rents the facility from the city. The work will include the installation of elevators, new windows and a sprinkler system. Another $500,000 will be spent to refurbish the permanent collection of artifacts, which hasn't been touched since 1992. The city has leased the property to the Macdonald Stewart Foundation since 1963 for use as a military and maritime museum. In 1985 it became the Macdonald Stewart Museum, and in the '90s became simply the Stewart Museum in the Old Fort. The museum is expected to re-open in May 2010. When it does, it will offer a revised educational program of activities. "In the past we offered quite a few group activities, perhaps too many, so we plan to clean up the act," said Sylvia Neider Deschênes, the museum's communications chief. The museum will be closed, but the military drills in the parade square will continue. "We will not touch the two ceremonial military regiments, the Compagnie franche de la Marine and the 78th Fraser Highlanders," Neider Deschênes said. "That's one program that sets us apart from other museums. We're adamant about keeping them. All the military animation programs will run next summer."
  4. http://xactcondos.com/en/you 90 Condos, delivery August 2014 Formerly Hotel du Fort, closed November 2013
  5. via The Gazette : The Restaurant Scene in Montreal : Boom Equals Bust Lesley Chesterman Montreal Gazette Published on: November 21, 2014 Last Updated: November 21, 2014 9:14 AM EST Le Paris-Beurre is an excellent neighbourhood bistro that Outremont residents are lucky to have called their own for more than thirty years. The braised leeks with curry vinaigrette, the goat’s cheese salad, the famous gratin dauphinois and côte de boeuf for two, plus the best crème brûlée in town, make this restaurant a sure bet. Yes, the wine list has been on the predictable side for a decade too many and maybe the soup has a tendency to be a little watery, but the terrasse is divine and the dining room offers the ideal out-of-a-Truffaut-film bistro setting. If Le Paris-Beurre were located in Paris, it would be frequented by both locals and tourists looking for that fantasy French bistro. In Montreal, Le Paris-Beurre has relied on locals to fill its 65 seats. And increasingly, those locals are often grey-haired, owner Hubert Streicher said in a recent interview. Now after 30 years in business, Le Paris-Beurre will be serving its last bavette and duck confit on Dec. 23. Streicher still hopes the restaurant will be sold, yet he’s not holding his breath. “Our sales fell over the last three years,” he said. “We have a very loyal customer base, but those customers are aging. And younger customers are now heading to bistros on Avenue Bernard.” Normally, the closing of this Montreal institution would come as a surprise, but considering the number of iconic Montreal restaurants that have shuttered this year – big players including Le Continental, the Beaver Club, Globe, Le Latini and Magnan’s Tavern – Le Paris-Beurre is just another establishment to give up on the increasingly volatile Montreal restaurant scene. Driving around the former popular restaurant neighbourhoods of our city, and seeing locale after locale with rent signs in the windows, it’s obvious the restaurant industry is hurting. It’s one thing when the bad restaurants close. A regular purging of the worst or the dated is to be expected. But now the good restaurants are hurting as well. There are too many restaurants in Montreal and not enough customers” – Restaurant owner Sylvie Lachance Upon closing, restaurants like Magnan’s Tavern and Globe issued press releases that raised many of the same issues: road work, tax measures, staff shortages, skyrocketing food costs, parking woes, the increasing popularity of suburban restaurants and changing tastes. Add to that list a shrinking upscale tourist clientele, and there are sure to be more closings on the horizon. People have less cash to spend and more restaurants to choose from. Competition is fierce. Tourism Montreal notes that ours is the city with the largest number of restaurants per capita in all of North America. According to François Meunier of the Association des Restaurateurs du Québec, the number of new restaurants with table service increased by 31 per cent from 2005 to 2012 in Montreal. Yet people are spending less. “Sales are down 4.2 per cent in full-service restaurants from last year,” Meunier said. “People don’t have money to spend. We don’t always like to admit it, but Quebec is a poor province.” There’s a definite shift taking place on the Montreal restaurant scene and for many restaurateurs, the obstacles are looking insurmountable. Up the street from Le Paris-Beurre is the restaurant Van Horne. Owner Sylvie Lachance was so discouraged by how the restaurant scene is evolving that she sent an open letter outlining her exasperation to various media outlets last May. “There are too many restaurants in Montreal and not enough customers,” her letter began, before outlining several trends she believed were holding her back from garnering the attention she deserved. Of her chef, Jens Ruoff, she wrote: “(He) is not a hipster, has no tattoos on his arms and does not serve homemade sausage on wood planks.” Of Van Horne’s marketing approach, she said: “We do not have cookbooks for sale, nor a sugar shack, much less a television show. We do not personally know Anthony Bourdain or René Redzepi.” She closed with the final thought: “We are not dying at Van Horne but it is unfortunate, given all the hard work we do, to be forgotten so often.” Now, six months later, Lachance is still discouraged. “Are there too many restaurants in Montreal? Yes!” she said without hesitation. “Everyone is looking for staff. It has become the biggest problem. I have young chefs here who say, ‘I could go to you, Toqué! or Boulud.’ They can go anywhere. And I also see restaurants that open up that are constantly looking for chefs, waiters, bus boys. They don’t even staff their restaurants properly before opening. And as for chefs, they have to be everything these days: creative, good at marketing, eager to meet with suppliers, manage employees, calculate food cost. Good luck finding one who can do all that.” Across town, Carlos Ferreira is facing many of the same concerns at his famous Peel St. restaurant, Ferreira Café. The restaurant’s lunch scene draws the elite downtown crowd. Dinner is equally popular. Now going on 18 years in business, Ferreira should be leaning back, counting the profits, happy with his multi-restaurant empire. Not quite. “Montreal has become a restaurant city focused on fashions and trends,” he said between bites of grilled octopus at lunchtime recently. “New restaurants invest a lot in decor and ambience. In the past, the food in trendy restaurants like Prima Donna and Mediterraneo was very good. But today, it’s not serious. The ambience is exaggerated, the markups on alcohol too. A lot of those restaurants took their clients for granted and now they’re all closed. And today there is this new Griffintown phenomenon. If you don’t go to eat there, you are a loser!” When asked if he thinks there are too many restaurants in Montreal, Ferreira nodded. The problem, he said, is a lack of direction. “We’re losing sight of what a restaurant should be,” Ferreira said. “People are opening restaurants without knowing the business.” Ferreira does know the business – he’s been drawing in customers to enjoy his modern Portuguese food coming up on 20 years. Next year, though, he will be re-evaluating his entire business. “In 2013, we served 1,800 fewer customers,” he said. One of the problems now is that with the ongoing erosion of the high-end restaurant genre and the increasing popularity of casual dining, the middle ground is getting crowded. To Ferreira, restaurants can be divided into four categories: high-end (gastronomic), casual (bistros), cafés and fast-food. “The high-end restaurant is condemned,” he said, matter-of-factly. “They are too expensive and people say they’re very good but … boring. And if people go into a half-full restaurant, they don’t want to return.” Another highly successful Montreal restaurant, Moishes, celebrated its 75th anniversary this year but has faced its share of challenges. Yet owner Lenny Lighter is not willing to blame the lack of business on the booming number of new restaurants. “Competition always makes me nervous,” Lighter said. “And not just another steakhouse but anyone in my price category. But where is that ‘too many restaurants’ statement going? We live in a free society. Anyone can open a business. It’s not for us to tell people what to do. You know what’s not good? Not enough restaurants. The more choices people have, the more interesting the game gets for everyone.” To Lighter, there’s too much going on in Montreal lately to curtail entrepreneurial spirit. Young people willing to raise the capital and take the risk should do it, he said. “Some will close, there will be heartbreaks. But the ones that survive might just be the next big thing. We never know what the next Joe Beef will be or who the next Costas Spiliadis will be. Only the strong will survive. Competition is good. It raises the stakes.” And yet the hurdles in the game may also make for an uneven playing field. Next August, Ferreira will face a lengthy construction period on Peel St. and the makeover of Ste-Catherine St., both of which he is dreading. “I understand it has to be done,” he said. “But it must be done intelligently, so that there is still access to businesses.” The fear of being barricaded by a construction site is a prime concern for many a restaurateur. Even at arguably the city’s most popular restaurant right now, Joe Beef, construction worries loom large. “If the city ripped up the street in front of me here for three weeks,” said co-owner David McMillan, “I’d go under.” At Thai Grill on the corner of St-Laurent Blvd. and Laurier Ave., owner Nicolas Scalera watched his business come to a halt when the sidewalks were widened. For four months, the entrance to his restaurant was accessible only by a small plank set over a mud pit. Construction, estimated to last a month, started in August yet only finished in early November. Scalera said customers not only petered out, many called to see if he was closed. “I paid $68,000 in taxes to the city last year. It would have been nice to see a break during construction.” “I’ve been here for 17 years. I have some rights as well. But they don’t care,” Scalera said. “I had (city councillor) Alex Norris (for the Jeanne-Mance district) tell me right to my face that they don’t want people coming in from other areas or Laval to eat in restaurants in this area. He told me the Plateau is for the Plateau residents. I’d like the city to promote our restaurants instead of doing nothing to help us. Instead, I’ve seen a major decline in business. I will never open anything or invest in the Plateau again. It’s too risky. You could lose everything.” Norris, the city councillor in question, disagrees. “The Plateau gets hundreds of thousands visiting our streets,” he said. “We encourage people from all over the city to frequent our businesses. It’s a densely populated neighbourhood, so we’ve had to manage the relationship between commercial endeavours and residents. To suggest we don’t want people to visit our neighbourhood is absurd.” Inflated taxes didn’t help Le Paris-Beurre’s Streicher in Outremont, either. “I was charged $2,500 in taxes (this year) for my terrasse alone, and my terrasse is part of my restaurant, in the back courtyard, not on the street.” Van Horne’s Lachance is also disheartened by the lack of interest from the people who collect her tax dollars. “In Outremont where I am,” she said, “not one elected municipal representative has been to my restaurant. They go to the cheap restaurant down the street. I’ve served Tony Accurso, but I’ve never had any mayor or elected official in my restaurant. There is a lack of appreciation for our restaurant scene. People don’t talk about what show they went to anymore, but what restaurant they ate at. Restaurants are part of our culture now.” When asked if he frequents restaurants in his neighbourhood, Norris could name only one, L’Express. “There are others,” he said. “I’ll have to get back to you.” We’re losing sight of what a restaurant should be.” – Carlos Ferreira Even at the internationally acclaimed Joe Beef, Montreal officials have been scarce. “I’ve served three former prime ministers,” McMillan said. “The governor of Vermont has eaten at my restaurant four times, but not one Montreal mayor or one municipal councillor from my area has eaten at Joe Beef. The last five times I ate in restaurants in New York, three of the times I saw the mayor eating there, too.” “I have taken note of the comments, and I am pleased to see that the people at Joe Beef’s want to see more of me,” Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre said via email on Thursday. “I was happy to see them recently at the Corona Theatre, where they catered an event celebrating David Suzuki. Unfortunately, the last time I was near Joe Beef’s restaurant, I was in a hurry and went to eat at Dilallo Burger.” “The city doesn’t understand how important the restaurants are in Montreal,” Ferreira said. Lighter is less dismissive, though he does see a lack of interest from above. “They’re not understanding the risk people take,” Lighter said. “There are payroll taxes, property taxes, operating taxes, school taxes. Government should be supporting you, not always policing you. And ultimately, with more sales, they get more taxes. Good business is profitable for them, too.” Despite the many factors hindering business, Montreal restaurateurs are not blaming customers. Client fidelity is at an all-time low, they say, yet they understand the desire to go out and eat around. “Montrealers follow the buzz,” Lachance said, “but they come back.” And yet there is one clientele all restaurateurs would like to see more of: tourists. “There is gigantic work to be done,” Ferreira said. “The summer of 2014 was the worst summer for tourists. Tourism Montreal says it was a record year, but they are drawing in the cheap tourists. These people aren’t spending.” Ferreira would like to see the city attract high-end conventions and tourists with money to spend by focusing more on the luxury market. “But no one will talk about that,” he said, discouraged. Pierre Bellerose, vice-president of Tourism Montreal, agrees the restaurant scene is hurting but with about 6,500 restaurants in the city, that’s to be expected. “We have more restaurants per capita than New York,” he said. “But we’re a poor city. Many close, many open. It’s a lot to ask the population to support the industry.” According to Bellerose, tourism is up 50 per cent from 20 years ago, and drawing visitors to the restaurant scene is one of the agency’s priorities. Bellerose said: “There is a good buzz about Montreal. It’s estimated that between 20 to 25 per cent of the clientele at high-end restaurants are tourists. There’s a lot of interest in food. But that interest varies. Some people just want smoked meat and poutine. And tourists are mostly circulating in the central areas of the city. We can’t follow them around and tell them where to go.” McMillan thinks Tourism Montreal could find better ways to promote our restaurant scene. “Tourism Maine and Tourism New York follow me on social media, but not Tourism Montreal,” he said. “And they keep paying for these bloggers to come in and discover the city. Instead, why not send some of us chefs out to promote Montreal restaurants abroad at food festivals or even in embassies? I’ve never been asked to promote my city or cook in an embassy – and if asked, I would do it.” And there is plenty here to promote. The New York-based website Eater.com recently dropped both their Toronto and Vancouver pages yet held on to their popular Montreal site. Though low on the high-end restaurant count, Montreal has an impressive number of chef-driven restaurants, with an increasing number of them drawing international attention to our scene. Plus, Montreal remains a far more affordable restaurant city than the likes of Paris, London or even Toronto – although the down side of being an affordable dining destination means less money in restaurant owners’ pockets (the ARQ estimates profits at a paltry 2.6 per cent). “We should be a premier destination,” Lighter said. “We have a unique culture, a great reputation. But Montreal has suffered economically. We’re highly taxed. There’s not a lot of disposable income and it’s expensive to eat out. I sense there is a certain defensiveness restaurateurs have with customers, but we have to learn from customers, too. We always have to have our eyes and ears open, ready to adjust.” Restaurants in Montreal: 6,500 People per restaurant in Montreal: 373 People per restaurant in New York City: 457 Increase in the number of new restaurants in Montreal from 2005 to 2012: 31 per cent Decline in sales at full-service restaurants in 2013: 4.2 per cent Sales at high-end Montreal restaurants from the tourism industry: 20 per cent End-of-year profit margin on all sales for Montreal full-service restaurants: 2.6 per cent Restaurants closing this year : Le Paris-Beurre : The bistro on Van Horne Ave. in Outremont will close on Dec. 23 Le Continental : Closed in May Le Latini : Closed in September Beaver Club : Closed in March Magnan Tavern : Will close on Dec. 21 Globe : Closed in September
  6. 10 MINUTES FROM DOWNTOWN NEW PROJECT FEATURING OVER 200 TOWNHOUSE 3 BEDROOMS + BASEMENT, GARAGE, PRIVATE BACK YARD DELIVERY Summer 2010 STEPS FROM MONTREAL-WEST TRAIN BUSSE, SCHOOLS, SERVICES CHOICE OF COLORS, STYLES & OPTIONS NO CONDO FEES BASE PRICE: $ 339,900 (incl all taxes) http://www.lescourspominville.ca The reason why I chose to highlight this project is because of its location and that it lends itself to a much greater discussion. Firstly, it is an example of yet another quality project in an area that is known for being low-income and aesthetically sub-par. Secondly, this project is located in the section of Ville Saint Pierre that is very much ‘Montreal West Adjacent’. In fact if it wasn’t for municipal borders it would make a lot more sense for this area of Ville Saint Pierre in particular to be part of Montreal West as opposed to Lachine. That being said, Montreal West has actually closed off vehicular access to the area from Chemin Broughton making a neighbourhood that should be a theoretical extension of Montreal West into a neighbourhood closed off from it. It is now only accessible from Chemin Avon the street that leads into the rest of Ville Saint Pierre (west of the train tracks).
  7. January 15, 2009 By PATRICK McGEEHAN The retailing of recorded music will take another step toward extinction in early April, when the Virgin Megastore in Times Square closes to make room for Forever 21, a popular chain that sells moderately priced clothing. The closing, which was announced to the store’s 200 employees this week, will leave the Virgin store on Union Square as the last Manhattan outpost of a large music chain. The future of that store has not been decided, Simon Wright, the chief executive of Virgin Entertainment Group, said on Wednesday. Stores that sell prerecorded CDs and DVDs have been done in by the popularity of digitized music that can be downloaded from the Internet onto iPods and MP3 players. But Mr. Wright said that the Times Square store, which has about 60,000 square feet of selling space, is not simply a victim of technological progress. It has remained “very, very profitable” by shifting its merchandise toward apparel and electronics, including iPods, he said, adding that those two categories accounted for about 25 percent of sales during the holiday shopping season. “Stores that rely completely on recorded music have a difficult future,” he said, “but we’ve been changing our business quite dramatically.” But the chain’s owners, two big New York-based real estate development companies, saw greater potential in leasing the prime space to Forever 21. The Virgin chain, once part of Sir Richard Branson’s business empire, has been owned since 2007 by the Related Companies and Vornado Realty Trust. It comprised 11 stores when it was acquired, but now will be down to just five, two of them in California. Virgin closed other stores late last year. The Times Square space, on the east side of Broadway near 46th Street, will be closed for at least a year before it reopens as Forever 21’s largest location. It will be combined with some adjoining space to create a 90,000-square-foot store that will be triple the size of any of Forever 21’s three current stores in Manhattan, said Lawrence Meyer, a senior vice president of Forever 21. Forever 21 is a Los Angeles-based chain that sells trendy clothing for young women and men. It competes with other moderately priced retailers like H & M and Gap stores. “This is a bigger format,” Mr. Meyer said. “It’s going to be a fashion department store. It’s going to offer a deeper assortment of women’s apparel and men’s apparel.” Mr. Meyer said the recession had not diluted his company’s enthusiasm for making a big splash in an expensive area like Times Square. He declined to specify the rent Forever 21 will pay. “We have been doing O.K. in this environment because we have always given great value to our customers,” Mr. Meyer said. “Our stores are exciting and we want to create an exciting environment in Times Square.” http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/15/nyregion/15virgin.html?_r=1&scp=3&sq=virgin&st=cse
  8. http://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/nobel-reit-is-moving-downtown-montreal-577586241.html 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - (TSXV: NEL.UN) Nobel Real Estate Investment Trust (the "REIT" or "Nobel REIT") is pleased to announce that it is moving its head office into its most recent acquisition located at 2045 Stanley in Downtown Montreal. Our offices are therefore closed today for the move; they will reopen in our new premises on Monday May 2nd. The REIT will then be reachable again at its new phone number, 514-840-9339.
  9. C'est de la grande classe. Avec Gordon Campbell, les stars internationales de la gastronomie vont-elles faire de Mtl un terrain de compétition? Ce serait vraiment cool. http://www.montrealgazette.com/Boulud+Ritz+resto+will+lift+competition+chefs/4619441/story.html
  10. Are there any authentic German pubs or eateries in Montreal? I'm aware that there was the Vieux-Munich which closed quite a while ago. Not sure if there is anywhere else? I know there was a German place on Sherbrooke in NDG called Bratwurst that was pretty good. I used to like their sauerkraut in particular. It has since become a Middle-Eastern establishment. Danke sehr!
  11. Halifax could learn a lot from Montreal VICTOR SYPEREK The Daily News You know, as you travel through this wonderful country, you realize just how lucky we are to be Canadians. From the majestic Rocky Mountains to the restless Atlantic Ocean. And what diverse populations. Bringing the best from all of our homelands. Leaving Toronto and heading East quickened my heart, as heading home always does. This is probably what is so compelling about travel. All we see and eat and do can be brought home to add a little diversity to our verdant region. I stopped in Kingston, Ont., which was celebrating the last day of its Busker Festival. It's hard to say how big theirs is, as on the last day, everyone joins together in the main area to watch the best of the week. They had closed a large portion of the downtown and besides the theatrical antics, parking lots were 1/2lled with 3/4ea markets, antique sales, baking and general city groups adding to the fun. After a Guinness, a bite and a leisurely chat with some locals, on I pushed to Montreal. I used to live there about 30 years ago. After the referendum, big business left in droves. Many Anglos followed. Toronto surpassed Montreal as Canada's No. 1 city. I think they went a little over board on their French-only bent, isolating them even further. But a funny thing happened. Rents stayed low. Houses remained affordable. It was the perfect environment for artists and artist expression. Montreal became an incubator and gave birth to the largest comedy festival and one of the largest jazz festivals and, of course, the world's most famous circus troupe, Cirque du Soleil. To some degree, this is all serendipity, the right place and the right time. But that isn't enough. You still need the people with the control and the money to pave the way or, at least, remove the road- blocks. And I chose this word for it's meaning. Obviously a city must function at many levels. Business must function, deliveries must be made, people must get to work and home again. But these days tourism is big business and as well talented people must be attracted to our fair cities. Besides just jobs, we have to address quality of life. Now this means many things. Besides a comfortable and safe place to live, we have to do things. We need theatre, 1/2lm, good food and entertainment. And entertainment can be so many things - from buskers to book fairs, car shows, huge 3/4ea markets, a literal day at the beach and sailing. If we have a happy population, it shows. The tourists 1/2nd out and they come to see why. And at the bottom of it all, you will 1/2nd a progressive administration. As in Montreal, where the arts had the perfect place to be. Flowers won't grow without the proper conditions, they must be encouraged. Montreal gets it. During the jazz festival, most of Montreal's streets are closed around the arts centre. During the Grand Prix the Main St. Laurent is closed and turned into a giant terrace; bars and restaurants spill out onto the street. The comedy fest, for two weeks, shuts down the blocks from St. Laurent past St. Dennis, south of Sherbrooke. The area is the size of downtown Halifax. There were hundreds of thousands of people on the streets. Roaming troupes of stilt walkers, parade 3/4oats, lights everywhere, sound and long lineups at all of the venues. It was a festival 20 years in the making. About 20 years ago, in Halifax, Dale Thompson started the Buskers' Festival and Mardi Gras, a Halloween night to remember. Buskers were a downtown-wide street show. They were everywhere. What could have grown into something approaching Montreal's festival was safely place in a sterile (read boring) package on the crowded waterfront. Same with Mardi Gras. It got out of control. Instead of managing it, it was cancelled, or at least the cost of police and 1/2re control became prohibitive. There is something wrong with our attitude. Mayor Peter Kelly and a few councillors should go on a paid junket to Montreal to 1/2nd out how it's done. There is no need to recreate the wheel. It's been done in Rio, New Orleans and in Montreal. I saw very few police, just on the gates to the streets. A couple of 1/2remen leaning on their 1/2re truck were there just in case. And there were hundreds of thousands of people of all ages with smiles on their faces. Heck, I'll even offer to go with them as translator, to translate into common sense. The film festival in Halifax is in its 21st year and yet the city is still dithering over permits to use Parade Square and surrounding streets. This festival has the potential to put us on the international 1/2lm map, but we need the nurturing and help of our city fathers. And speaking of 1/2lms, I wish our 1/2lm development board would get off their chairs and try to stem the 3/4ow of production from Nova Scotia to New Brunswick and the rest of the country. This was a $200- million-a-year business. Now I know there are circumstances, but let's start with local production. A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned that I hadn't seen many cops walking the beat late at night. Well just to prove me wrong, there they were Wednesday night, handing out parking tickets. C'mon. What gives? We have a world hockey tournament or curling or the Greek Festival or whatever - and the parking commission has a 1/2eld day. You know, if they are not blocking a hydrant or some emergency exit or driveway, do we have to be so fanatical? If it weren't about the revenue, you know you will be towed, if necessary. Let's give our visitors a break. But I guess we have to pay for the parking at Dartmouth Crossing somehow. Well, I'm off to enjoy our jazz festival. It's good here, but it could be better. Have a good one.
  12. Who else is tired of the non-stop traffic around town ? And few or no measures to redirect traffic proprely! All roads lead to headache as repairs, more cars pile up Published: 21 hours ago JASON MAGDER, The Gazette Published: 21 hours ago Joseph Simon has been driving a taxi in Montreal for 19 years, and he says traffic in the last few months is the worst he's ever seen. "My clients have left my car to walk the rest of the way; it's happened three times already," he said yesterday while sitting in his black Buick Century, waiting at a taxi stand on Metcalfe St. in front of the Sun Life Building. "Traffic has been terrible this summer." Several of his fellow taxi drivers agreed. "It's blocked everywhere this year," said Hayssam Hamad, a 12-year veteran who works for Diamond Taxi. "Every year, there is more and more traffic." Montrealers are used to road construction in the summer and fall, but it seems this year has been particularly difficult. In addition to construction on several major highways, many arteries in the city core also are under repair. Add to that the 135 inspections of road structures ordered by the Johnson commission investigating the causes of last year's overpass collapse in Laval, and you have a recipe for traffic mayhem. Mario St-Pierre, a spokesperson for Quebec's Transport Department, said there isn't more construction than usual. "But the construction maybe affects more people," he said. "Especially with the Ville Marie Expressway (which since June has had several lanes closed for repairs). It's very difficult to divert the traffic there." He added there are more cars travelling to and from Montreal than ever before. According to figures from the Auto Insurance Board, car ownership in the areas around Montreal shot up between seven and 11 per cent between the years 2000 and 2005. In Montreal, there were 3.1 per cent more cars in the same period. Yesterday, motorists had a double dose of gridlock to contend with during the morning rush hour. An accident forced the closure of the Montreal-bound lanes of the Mercier Bridge. To make matters worse, the Transport Department closed Côte de Liesse Expressway to and from the Dorval Circle for emergency repairs to the underpass that gives eastbound cars access to Trudeau airport, causing backlogs on Highway 20 westbound, an area usually free of traffic problems in the morning. Yesterday at 7:30 a.m., cars backed up for a kilometre on Highway 20, causing about a half-hour delay, said André Marcotte, the Transport Department's director of planning for the Montreal region. The traffic caused some people to miss their flights yesterday morning, said Christiane Beaulieu, the vice-president of public affairs for Aéroports de Montréal. Some airport employees also were late for work because the parking lot for employees is located where the worst gridlock occurred, she said. The situation eased slightly in the afternoon when westbound Côte de Liesse was reopened. Things should improve even more this morning as the eastbound part from Marshall Ave. to the Dorval Circle is expected to be reopened. The underpass will remain closed until tomorrow and eastbound traffic to the airport will be diverted onto Michel Jasmin Ave. (the expressway's service road) and the Marshall Ave. overpass. The underpass was one of 135 structures flagged for inspection by the Johnson commission. It was found to be structurally deficient. With just 20 inspections carried out so far, Montrealers can expect many more temporary road closures in the coming months. Back at the taxi stand, Hamad said he doesn't mind the highway repairs so much, it's the work being done in the downtown core that is really hurting him. "On the highway, there's just a bit of a delay where the construction is, and then it clears up afterward," he said. He added it has been particularly difficult navigating on de Maisonneuve Blvd., where a bicycle path is being constructed, and on Sherbrooke St. near Amherst St., which has been closed since June for repairs after a section of the road collapsed. There were several other problems downtown recently: part of Bleury St. was closed for a weekend this month. It's still off-limits for heavy trucks. A section of the downtown core was closed last month when cracks were found in a concrete slab in the underground city near the McGill métro station. One block will remain closed for the next few months while crews work to remove the slab and replace it. [email protected] - - - And looking down the road, there's trouble circling More traffic headaches are in store for Highway 20 next year, as the Quebec Transport Department starts work on the much-anticipated reconfiguration of the Dorval circle. André Marcotte, the Transport Department's director of planning for the Montreal area said an announcement of the $150 million project will be made in the coming months. Preliminary work will be done this year with the demolition of a derelict building near the Via Rail train station. The major work will start next year, for completion in 2010. The project will reduce congestion to and from the airport by eliminating the traffic lights in the Dorval circle, Marcotte said. Christiane Beaulieu, Aéroports de Montréal's vice president of public relations, said this is welcome news. "The No. 1 complaint we get about the airport is that it is difficult to access," she said. "This is very good news." The project has been delayed many times in the past. It was originally planned for completion by 2001.
  13. She and her Montreal-born boyfriend Gabriel Aubry have reportedly bought a house in the Laurentians. The 42-year-old actress is said to have closed the deal on a $1.6 million mansion on a private lake in St. Hippolyte about 60 kilometres north of Montreal.
  14. TD and Royal downgraded to sell Posted: January 16, 2009, 8:47 AM by Jonathan Ratner Both Royal Bank and Toronto-Dominion Bank were downgraded to a “sell” at Dundee Securities on expectations for weaker credit quality, bringing them in line with the firm’s bearish view on the sector as a whole and its recommendations for all of the Big 5 banks. Despite significant deterioration in its U.S. loan portfolio’s credit quality, Royal’s earnings have held up reasonably well on the back of its domestic retail banking programs, analyst John Aiken told clients. However, since Canada is unlikely to escape the “economic carnage” occurring in the U.S., he said it is only a matter of time before domestic credit quality begins to weaken materially, as credit card exposures have already started to show. “Consequently, although Royal will likely fair relatively well and should retain a premium to the group, absolute risk still exists,” Mr. Aiken said, cutting his price target on the stock from $38 per share to $35. It closed at $34.04 on Thursday. His forecast for TD moves from $51 to $44 as a result of expectations for a challenged outlook in the coming quarters as a result of additional deterioration in credit quality. It ended the day at $44.05. While Mr. Aiken said TD’s operations remain strong and its long-term prospects are solid based on its U.S. growth platform, he thinks 2009 will be the second straight year of declining earnings. “TD will not be immune and we believe that there is a risk that current expectations for credit losses have a significantly greater chance of being too low rather than too conservative,” the analyst said. Mr. Aiken did upgrade Laurentian Bank from a “sell” to “neutral,” but lowered his price target from $36 to $33. The stock closed at $31.41 on Thursday. “We believe that Laurentian’s valuation is much more reasonable at these levels,” he said, adding that while the bank does not have any direct exposure to the U.S., it will still feel pain on the domestic front. In general, Mr. Aiken feels the impact of underlying economic weakness and credit woes in the U.S., which has produced an earnings drag, increased write-downs and higher loan loss provisions, has also filtered into the Canadian market and will likely linger into the first half of 2009. “Consequently, we believe that headwinds to the banks’ earnings and concerns of capital adequacy will remain in the forefront as the banks begin the journey into 2009, and with it, the remaining perils from the past year, plus those yet unknown,” he said. As a result, the analyst said now is not the time to change his cautionary stance on the sector. Instead, he said it is time to remain “selective and mindful.” Mr. Aiken suggested that strong domestic operations should bode well for the retail market leaders TD, Royal and to a lesser extent CIBC. He also expects higher provisioning will come from the U.S. exposures of TD, Royal and Bank of Montreal, as well as the ripple effects to Bank of Nova Scotia’s Latin America assets. “Overall, valuation outlook will be largely predicated on the depth and breadth of the U.S. economic slowdown,” the analyst said. “Further credit deterioration will result in higher provisions, while added margin compressions will also depress earnings, offering little justification for any meaningful near term increase in valuations.”
  15. http://www.canada.com/montrealgazette/news/saturdayextra/story.html?id=34389692-7401-4f72-8dc1-0193f394a578&p=1 A partir de samedi le 16aoùt 2008, une série de sept articles sur le patrimoine architectural de Montréal. Ce samedi, le restaurant du 9ième étage de l'édifice-amiral de l'ancien magasin Eaton. Aujourd'hui : le Wilder Block Luxury to the 9TH ALAN HUSTAK, The Gazette Published: Saturday, August 16 Like all cities, Montreal has its share of aging buildings that aren't architecturally significant but contribute to the texture of the streetscape and help identify neighbourhoods. Often, how a building fits into its surroundings is more important than how it looks. When old, familiar structures are torn down to make way for another overscale high-rise, the city is diminished, some say. A bigger problem is that many important buildings in Montreal have been allowed to deteriorate as real estate speculators, developers and politicians spar over profit margins, zoning regulations and height restrictions. Montreal is no longer a place where we tally up heritage losses, as we did in the 1960s and '70s, when sections of historic Old Montreal were razed and mansions in the Square Mile were demolished in the name of progress. Still, urban planners keep tabs on sites they consider at risk. We look at some of the properties on Heritage Montreal's list and invite readers to share their views on whether these places should be saved or surrendered. - - - WITH ITS OPAL GLASS WINDOWS, nickel steel railings, and pink marble columns with black Belgian marble accents, Le 9e dining room in the former Eaton's building downtown remains one of the most staggeringly beautiful art deco rooms in Montreal. But the restaurant has been off limits to the public since the Eaton's department store chain went bankrupt and closed its flagship Montreal store in 1999. Inspired by a trip company matriarch Lady Eaton took aboard the transatlantic luxury liner Île de France in the 1920s, the dining room was incorporated into the plan when Eaton's decided to expand its Ste. Catherine St. store to nine floors from six in 1928. The 650-seat dining room opened on Jan. 25, 1931, as Le François Premier, but the ladies who lunched there never called it that. It was always known as "The Ninth Floor." The room is the work of interior designer Jacques Carlu, the French-born professor of advanced design at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He was also responsible for the celebrated Trocadéro in Paris and the Rainbow Room in New York's Rockefeller Plaza. The restaurant is an elegantly proportioned space, 40 metres long and 23 metres wide, with a 14-metre ceiling. It has two smaller dining rooms off to the side, the Gold Room and the Silver Room. At either end of the main room are two allegorical cubist murals, Pleasure of the Chase and Pleasures of Peace, painted by Carlu's wife, Natasha. Initially, the Ninth Floor foyer offered a panoramic view of the city, but the vista disappeared as more skyscrapers arose downtown. Even before the restaurant opened, The Gazette enthused over its opulence. "Spacious and lofty, it is a room fit for a palace," an article in the paper said at the time. It was never a high-end gourmet restaurant, but the food was substantial, the ambience luxurious, and the wait staff attentive and motherly. After Eaton's closed, the building was sold to Ivanhoe Cambridge, a real-estate arm of the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, which invests funds from the Quebec Pension Plan. There were rumours the site would be incorporated into a luxury hotel - which was never built - and it would reopen as a swank supper club. It has been used occasionally for private functions. Even though the Ninth Floor has been declared a heritage site by the provincial government, that classification does not oblige the owner to maintain or conserve the space. An official of Ivanhoe Inc., which owns the former Eaton's building, confirmed the real-estate firm has entertained several offers but has not decided what to do with the property. What should be done? Preserve it: The Ninth Floor restaurant and the elevator shafts leading to it were declared a heritage site by Quebec's Culture Department in 2001. If that floor of the former Eaton's store continues to be mothballed, it might be forgotten altogether or converted into private offices, inaccessible to the public. Forget it: The plumbing at the Ninth Floor requires a major overhaul to meet health standards. And without nine floors of retail space beneath the restaurant to attract customers, the room might not be a profitable commercial venue for another 20 or 30 years. - - - Landmarks in limbo: The series Today: Le 9e, popularly known as the Ninth Floor, the art deco restaurant at the former Eaton's store downtown. Day 2: The Wilder Block on Bleury St. Day 3: The Redpath Mansion on du Musée Ave. Day 4: The Montreal Planetarium at St. Jacques and Peel Sts. Day 5: Grain Elevator No. 5 on Montreal's waterfront. Day 6: Louis-Hippolyte Lafontaine House, at Overdale Ave. and Lucien L'Allier St. Day 7: The Guaranteed Pure Milk Co. bottle, overlooking Lucien L'Allier St. [email protected] montrealgazette.com Share your views Which historical and cultural sites in Montreal should be maintained? Which should be demolished? Give us your opinion at montrealgazette.com/soundoff A trip through the past Log on to our website to view a slide show of Montreal's threatened landmarks and hear the history behind them. Go to montrealgazette.com/galleries
  16. Réaménagement de la sortie 15 Nord. Reconstruit à droite! Pour enfin corriger les erreurs du passé! <iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/28rndC0RMYk" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe> Selon la gazette, des travaux majeur au cour du week-end: http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Construction+affect+interchange+Highways+this+weekend/6350156/story.html Construction to affect interchange at Highways 40 and 15 this weekend THE GAZETTE MARCH 23, 2012
  17. Ce sujet à été démarrer seulement pour les crisses d'épais qui pollue trop souvent ce forum et qui pense qu'il y a juste à Montréal que des choses comme ça arrive. Il n'y a pas juste ici qu'ils trouvent des défauts dans des constructions. Source: CNN Construction crews working on the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge in California discovered a crack that could keep the heavily traveled bridge closed beyond the planned Labor Day weekend shutdown. During inspection of the east span of the bridge, workers found a crack in one of the eyebars on the side of the structure, said Bart Ney, spokesman for the California Department of Transportation. "It's a significant crack -- significant enough to have closed the bridge on its own," he said in a news conference aired on the agency's Web site Saturday night. Ney said the crack has to be repaired immediately and acknowledged that the work may stretch past Tuesday when the bridge was scheduled to reopen. "I want to assure everyone that this repair will be made and we will return the Bay Bridge safer than when we took it out," he said.