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Found 47 results

  1. MONTREAL, July 6, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - Technoparc Montreal is pleased to present its activity report of 2015 via its annual report. The annual report describes the activities of 2015, a definite year of building! During the year, three major industrial projects (amongst the largest in Greater Montreal) were launched. These projects are the installation of the North American headquarters of Green Cross Biotherapeutics, the installation of ABB's Canadian headquarters and the construction of Vidéotron's 4Degrés data centre. These three major projects can be added to the list of companies that have chosen to locate their activities at the Technoparc. According to an analysis conducted by E&B DATA in 2015, the future construction of the new buildings at the Technoparc will generate $580 million to Quebec's GDP, $109 million to Quebec's public administration revenues and $37 million to federal public administration revenues. According to Carl Baillargeon, Technoparc Montreal's Director – Communications & Marketing "These projects represent the creation of more than 1,000 new jobs at the Technoparc, an investment of $400 million and the addition of 600 000 square feet to the real estate inventory. These are indeed excellent news for the economy of Montreal and the province of Quebec. This also confirms Technoparc's role as an important component of the economical development. In addition, the recent announcement of the proposed Réseau Électrique Métropolitain (electric train) by the CDPQ Infra, in which a station is planned at the Technoparc, reinforces the strategic location of the site and will thereby facilitate the access to the site via transportation means other than the car. " Technoparc Montréal is a non-profit organization that provides high-tech companies and entrepreneurs with environments and real-estate solutions conducive to innovation, cooperation and success. For more information, please see the website at http://www.technoparc.com. The 2015 annual report can be consulted online at: http://www.technoparc.com/static/uploaded/Files/brochures-en/Rapport-2015-EN_WEB.pdf SOURCE Technoparc Montréal
  2. Carte intéressante sur la répartition des types d'industries par arrondissement : Via Montreal Gazette : http://montrealgazette.com/news/local-news/maps-whos-putting-montrealers-to-work Maps show who's putting Montrealers to work ROBERTO ROCHA, MONTREAL GAZETTE Published on: October 23, 2014Last Updated: October 28, 2014 2:06 PM EDT If you want a job at a clothing store, you’ll have better chances finding work in St-Léonard. But if working at a private residence is your thing, Hampstead is a good place too look. Data released by Montreal’s statistics bureau breaks down the number of jobs in each industry, for every borough and demerged suburb. The data confirms obvious truths — that the main industry in Dorval is transportation, and that manufacturing is heavy in St-Laurent and the east end — but it also offer some surprises. The data details the number of jobs in each type of industry and workplace. These are jobs that exist inside a borough’s or city’s borders, not the jobs of residents who live in those places. There’s a large swath, stretching from Pierrefonds to Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, where the dominant industry is health care and social services. And though it’s no surprise that places like Ville-Marie and Westmount would be heavy in professional services, but Sud-Ouest is less obvious. We can assume the condo boom in Griffintown, as well as the gentrification of Pointe St-Charles created demand for skilled workers. However, only 13 per cent of jobs in Sud-Ouest are in that field, which suggests the borough has a rich diversity of jobs. However, this maps only gives us a big-picture view of general industries. The data also breaks down the number of jobs by more granular workplaces. Here’s another map, this time by type of employer. We see that the boroughs where health and social services are strong are split between hospitals and schools as main employers. Banking, not surprisingly, is the main employer downtown, while the top job in the Plateau is in restaurants. Surprisingly, it’s the same in Dollard-des-Ormeaux. And did you ever imagine so many people in Montreal-East worked in furniture stores? Or that the federal government employs lots of Westmounters? A curious outlier is Hampstead, which has, as the dominant employer, private households. These refer to domestic labour, like cleaners, maids and cooks. “Being a city with one of the highest incomes in the region, it’s plausible to find so many jobs in that sub-category,” said Yan Beaumont, researcher at Montréal en statistiques. Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue also stands out, with colleges and CEGEPs being the main employer. The tiny, partly rural city is home to John Abbott College and Gérand Godin College. Here is the summary of the data for the three levels of the Montreal area. [TABLE=class: grid, width: 600] [TR] [TD][/TD] [TD]Montreal metropolitan region[/TD] [TD]Montreal agglomeration[/TD] [TD]City of Montreal[/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD]Largest industry[/TD] [TD]Retail[/TD] [TD]Health care and social services[/TD] [TD]Health care and social services[/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD]Second-largest industry[/TD] [TD]Health care and social services[/TD] [TD]Manufacturing[/TD] [TD]Professional, scientific, and technical services[/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD]Largest employer[/TD] [TD]Hospitals[/TD] [TD]Hospitals[/TD] [TD]Hospitals[/TD] [/TR] [TR] [TD]Second largest employer[/TD] [TD]Primary and secondary schools[/TD] [TD]Primary and secondary schools[/TD] [TD]Primary and secondary schools[/TD] [/TR] [/TABLE] Full data sheet at the end of the article
  3. (Courtesy of The Globe and Mail) First stop London, next stop global domination!
  4. http://www.bloomberg.com/visual-data/best-and-worst/highest-rents-us-cities Plein de stats pour ceux qui aiment cela...très bien fait.
  5. Middle-class communities disappearing Big increase in poor neighbourhoods in Toronto and more rich districts, according to U of T study February 08, 2009 Daniel Dale STAFF REPORTER "PRIMO PIZZA," the sign reads. "SINCE 1965." Like the store's walls, it is green and white and red, the colours of the Italian flag, and, on the left, there is a cartoonishly mustachioed man carrying a pepperoni pie above his head. This could be any Italian-owned pizza joint in the city. It was indeed Italian-owned until last year. Then a man named Rocky sold it to a man named Abdul. Abdul Malik, a 43-year-old Indian immigrant, kept its name and its oven and its sauce and its dough. He made just one addition to the top right corner of the sign, easy to miss if you're darting in from the cold, above the shop's phone number. "Halal 100%." "Some people, when they see the sign `halal,' they don't come," said Malik, who also drives a taxi. "We're losing some customers. But we're gaining other types of customers." The neighbourhood known to Statistics Canada as Census Tract 354 is changing. A community of 1950s red-brick bungalows, sturdy front-lawn maple trees and long, narrow driveways, it seems the very embodiment of white middle-class suburban Canadiana. But like the rest of Scarborough, it is decreasingly white. And by University of Toronto Professor David Hulchanski's definition, it is no longer middle-class. Later this year, Hulchanski – associate director for research at the U of T's Cities Centre – and a team of researchers will release an update of their 2007 report The Three Cities within Toronto. Their new analysis of data from the 2006 census confirms a trend they found in the first study: the income gap between Toronto's rich areas and poor areas is growing, while its middle-income neighbourhoods are disappearing. Hulchanski's findings, in aggregate, are dramatic. At the micro-level of this individual neighbourhood, however, the impact of relative economic decline is not unlike Malik's change to the pizza shop's sign. Significant, certainly, but subtle. Between 1995 and 2005, the 5,225-person census district, roughly bordered by Lawrence Ave. E. to the north, Knob Hill Park to the south, Brimley Rd. to the west and McCowan Park to the east, gained 1,020 members of visible minority groups. They now comprise more than 55 per cent of the population, up from about a third in the 1990s. Most of the newcomers came to Canada this decade or last from South Asian countries – predominantly India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Like recent immigrants of all types, many of them struggle to make an adequate living. The area's average individual income in 2006 – $29,929 – was 25 per cent lower than the average for Toronto census districts: $40,074. Hulchanski classifies areas 20 per cent or more below the city-wide average as low-income; according to him, this area has been low-income since at least 2000. Yet ask long-time white residents to classify their neighbourhood and they will inevitably call it middle-class. Ask them to describe recent demographic changes and they will think for a moment, then point down the street to a house an Indian family bought from a British couple, or around the corner to another now owned by Sri Lankans. "When we moved in almost 30 years ago – we moved in '79 – there were more Anglo-Saxon people," said Filomena Polidoro, 53. "Now there are more ethnic people. It's more mixed. And it's nice, still nice. We like it." The old-timers' shrugs about its low-income status reflect a key caveat to the discussion of the disappearance of the city's middle-class census tracts: to fall from "middle-income" to "low-income," in relative terms, a neighbourhood need not get significantly poorer. Since the city's high-income neighbourhoods are getting richer, a middle-class neighbourhood that maintains its income level will be relatively poorer. The influx of South Asians has not made this one destitute; it remains largely populated, said Polidoro, by people who work as teachers, nurses, and factory and construction workers, among other unpretentious jobs. But the new arrivals contributed to a decline of about $1,000 in the neighbourhood's inflation-adjusted average individual income between 2000 and 2005. Two local real estate agents said about 70 per cent of people now inquiring about houses in the neighbourhood are South Asian. Many recent buyers, said Coldwell Banker agent Raffi Boghossian, are large extended families who have pooled limited incomes, sometimes "not much more than minimum wage," to acquire property. Local businesses have adjusted accordingly. At Reliable Parts, an appliance parts shop beside Primo Pizza, employee Warren Lastewka has a polite "the price is the price" speech he delivers when cash-strapped customers reared in haggling-friendly countries ask for unadvertised discounts. The Paperback Exchange, a bookstore in the plaza since the 1970s, now stocks elementary educational books with titles like Basic Learning Skills and Parts of Speech near its sci-fi novels. "I'll get a family of Pakistanis in when the teacher says to them, `Your kid's not going to make it if they can't read English.' From now through to June, that's when they usually get the notice," said Joy Ritchie, 64, the mother of owner Troy Ritchie. "I keep those books on the wall there. And I do very good business on that from now to June." Low-income areas sometimes lack proximity to social services and other essential conveniences. This one is served by Scarborough General Hospital, a Royal Bank, a Shoppers Drug Mart, a library and a Price Chopper. "Everything is convenient for us in this area," said Kaushik Maisuria, 28, an India-born auto garage employee who lives with his two uncles and two young cousins. "We can get whatever we want." Including, increasingly, products and services targeted to them, like Malik's halal pizza or the plaza's JD's Market and Halal Meat, where large bags of basmati rice line the aisles and a butcher works out back. Once a Becker's Milk, the location was a standard convenience store until October, when Jaffer Derwish's Afghanistan-born family converted it into a small grocery. In a tough economy, business is slow, said Derwish, 23. So is demand for local real estate. "The market is sort of dead in the area," Boghossian said. Many prospective buyers, he said, "are people with income that is not certain." "Typical Scarborough," said Royal LePage Signature realtor Joan Manuel. "You're not getting multiple offers. And if you do, you're not getting them over (the listed price)." Those people still making offers, however, are drawn to the neighbourhood's increasing ability to meet distinct South Asian needs. About 800 metres from Brimley Rd. is the large new Jame Abu Bakr Siddique mosque, a gleaming white facility whose minarets loom over another halal pizzeria. Prospective buyers have cited the mosque as a key lure to the area, said Manuel. And other attractions abound. Down the street is the bustling Bombay Bazaar grocery store in a Lawrence Ave. plaza so busy people park their cars in the middle of the parking lot, preventing those lucky enough to find spots from backing out. Nearby are a Hindi video rental store-slash-hair salon and a fish market. It is, for some, a sight to behold. "Where there used to be an old mom-and-pop operation," said Joy Ritchie, a touch of wonderment in her voice, "now they're selling saris." http://www.thestar.com/News/GTA/article/584203 Poor neighbourhoods growing across Toronto RENÉ JOHNSTON/TORONTO STAR Newspapers in South Asian languages serve the city's many new immigrants. Toronto's middle class is disappearing. Since 2001, 15 of the city's middle-income neighbourhoods have vanished, according to a yet-to-be released University of Toronto report. The majority became low-income areas, where individual earnings are 20 to 40 per cent below the city average. Hardest hit are the suburbs. Declines in Scarborough and north Etobicoke have continued. Falling income is also affecting parts of Brampton, Mississauga and Durham. In 1970, 86 per cent of 905 neighbourhoods were middle class. In 2005, that number had tumbled to 61 per cent. From 2000 to 2005, the number of city neighbourhoods with very low earnings – more than 40 per cent below the Toronto-area average – grew by almost 50 per cent. Residents in these neighbourhoods live on welfare-level earnings, says U of T researcher David Hulchanski. The report, due out this year, is an update of the groundbreaking 2007 The Three Cities within Toronto report by Hulchanski and a team of university researchers. It analyzed and mapped Statistics Canada census data from 1971 to 2001, finding that not only were middle-class neighbourhoods disappearing, but Toronto was divided into three distinct geographic areas: City 1, which consistently gained income; City 2, which maintained its income but shrunk in size; and City 3, whose residents saw their earnings fall over the 30-year period. Hulchanski says municipal governments are not to blame. "The people of Toronto did not do this to themselves. This is a national trend. What we're showing on these maps is the way federal and provincial policies, as well as the economy, have played out in Toronto's neighbourhoods." He says policies such as universal health care and social assistance helped build the middle class. Cutbacks, including downloading of social services from the province to cities and a lack of affordable housing and job protection, are leading to its destruction. "You didn't talk about McJobs in the 1970s, or even part-time jobs without benefits. Whoever heard of a job that wasn't full-time without benefits?" he asks. "That would be shocking 25 years ago. Now it's normal." Hulchanski's updated study, with another five years of data from the 2006 census, confirms the decline of the middle class and the continued polarization of rich and poor neighbourhoods. From 2001 to 2006, individual incomes in wealthy areas grew 14 per cent, while residents of low-income neighbourhoods made only modest gains. During the 1970s, Toronto was a predominantly middle-class city, with 341 of its 520 census tracts – neighbourhood areas determined by Statistics Canada so that they have roughly 4,000 residents each – in the middle-income category. Poverty was contained in the city's urban core. Thirty years later, it's a city divided. Richer residents live along the Yonge St. corridor, close to services and transit. Individual incomes average almost $90,000 a year. The proliferating poorer communities are located in Toronto's pre-amalgamation suburbs, the middle-class bastion of the 1950s. In 2006 that area included 40 per cent of the city's census tracts. Sixty-one per cent are immigrants. There is little rapid transit and an average income of $26,900. Sandwiched between the two areas is a shrinking City 2, neighbourhoods with static income where the average income is about $35,700. Hulchanski began his research in 2005 with a $1 million grant (spread over five years) from the Social Science Humanities Research Council of Canada. He teamed with St. Christopher House, an omnibus social service agency in the city's west end, to examine how gentrification was changing the neighbourhood. The data was difficult to analyze. Within the 30-year period, census boundaries had changed and some of the information wasn't available electronically. A U of T data analyst took more than a year to get it into shape. By the time Hulchanski began his work, Toronto and the United Way had completed research showing the city's poverty was highest in 13 priority neighbourhoods. "The trend line was clearly there. Researchers saw it and the city's work with the United Way was going on," says Fiona Chapman, manager of social research and analysis for Toronto. "What David's work has done is absolutely confirmed the concerns. And I think why everybody doffs their cap to David is (that) he's been very good at helping the public understand these concerns." BY THE NUMBERS How the income decline affects the outer suburbs $40,074 Average 2005 individual income, all Toronto census districts 61 Percentage of population comprising immigrants in districts where incomes have declined more than 20 per cent since 1970 34 Percentage of population comprising whites in such districts 19 Number of subway stations within 300 metres of such districts, versus 40 for biggest-gaining districts 54 Percentage of 2005-07 homicides in such districts, versus 12 per cent for biggest-gaining districts Source: University of Toronto Cities Centre U of T analysis of census data shows middle class shrinking, especially in Scarborough, Etobicoke February 08, 2009 Patty Winsa STAFF REPORTER http://www.thestar.com/Article/584204 interactive map: http://www3.thestar.com/static/Flash/map_middleclass.html PDF:http://multimedia.thestar.com/acrobat/51/c7/2cc835a5403d8d76478fae97bba0.pdf
  6. http://9to5google.com/2011/09/22/google-becomes-a-virtual-mobile-network-operator-in-spain-rest-of-europe-coming-soon/ It be interesting to see them come here and become an MVNO with one of the carriers here and maybe even start up their own ISP.
  7. (CNN) -- Scientists have produced the first worldwide map showing the height of forests using data from NASA satellites. The map will help scientists work out how much carbon is locked up in forests and how quickly that carbon cycles through the eco-system and back into the atmosphere. Read more: NASA images used to map world's tree heights
  8. Yesterday Rogers rolled out new data plans for use in Canada/US. 500 MB @ $35 1 GB @ $40 Plus it comes different forms of payment: monthly, 1 year, 2 year and 3 year. I might finally get data on my phone. It seems worth it.
  9. http://www.theatlanticcities.com/jobs-and-economy/2013/06/new-global-start-cities/5144/ RICHARD FLORIDA Author's note: Start-up companies are a driving force in high-tech innovation and economic growth. Venture capital-backed companies like Intel, Apple, Genentech, Facebook, Google, and Twitter have powered the rise of whole new industries and shaped the way we live and work. Silicon Valley has long been the world's center for high-tech start-ups. Over the next few weeks, I'll be looking at the new geography of venture capital and high-tech start-ups and the rise of new start-up cities in the United States. I'll be also track to what degree start-up communities are shifting from their traditional locations in the suburbs to urban centers. America's start-up geography, with its well-established high-tech clusters in Silicon Valley and along Boston's Route 128, as well as more recent concentrations in urban centers like San Francisco and lower Manhattan, has been much discussed. But what does the world's start-up geography look like? What are the major start-up cities across the globe? Up until now, good data on the geography of start-ups outside the United States has been very hard, if not impossible, to come by. That's why a relatively new ranking of start-up cities across the globe by SeedTable is so interesting. SeedTable is a discovery platform that's built on the open-source database of more than 100,000 technology companies, investors, and entrepreneurs available at CrunchBase (one of the TechCrunch publications). SeedTable has information on more than 42,500 companies founded since 2002, including whether the companies are angel- or venture capital-funded (angel funders invest their own money; venture capitalists raise money from others), and whether the funder has exited, either by IPO or acquisition. The data cover 150 cities worldwide. It is reported by separate city or municipality, so the Martin Prosperity Institute's Zara Matheson organized the data by metro area and then mapped it by three major categories: global start-ups, companies receiving angel funding, and companies receiving institutional venture capital. The first map tracks start-ups across the cities of the world. New York tops the list with 144, besting San Francisco's 135. London is next with 90, followed by San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara (Silicon Valley) with 66, and Los Angeles with 64. Toronto and Boston-Cambridge tied for sixth with 34 each, Chicago is eighth with 31, Berlin ninth with 27, and Bangalore 10th with 26. Austin (23), Seattle (22), and São Paulo (21) each have more than 20 start-ups. Another 20 cities are home to 10 or more start-ups: Istanbul with 19; Vancouver and Moscow each with 17; New Delhi (15); Paris, and Atlanta with 14 each; Washington, D.C., Amsterdam, and Miami with 12 each; San Diego, Madrid, Singapore, and Sydney with 11 apiece; and Barcelona, Dublin, Tel Aviv, Dallas-Fort Worth, Mumbai, Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro, with 10 start-ups each. The second map charts the leading locations for companies receiving angel funding. Angel funding comes typically from wealthy individuals, often established entrepreneurs who invest their own personal funds in start-up companies. San Francisco now tops the list with 138 companies receiving angel funding, followed by New York with 117. London is again third with 62. San Jose is fourth with 60, Boston-Cambridge fifth with 50 and L.A. sixth with 48. Chicago and Philadelphia are tied for seventh with 19, and Seattle and Portland tied for 10th with 18 apiece. Nine more cities have 10 or more companies receiving angel funding: Toronto (17), D.C. (14), Berlin, and Paris (13 each), Atlanta, Barcelona and Boulder (12 each), Dublin (11), and Cincinnati (10). The third map above charts the locations of companies that attracted venture capital funding. Now the ranking changes considerably. San Francisco tops the list with 354, followed by Boston-Cambridge with 248, and San Jose with 216. New York is fourth with 160 and London fifth with 73. L.A. is sixth with 65, Seattle seventh with 57, San Diego eighth with 48, Austin ninth with 47, and Chicago 10th with 29. There are seven additional cities with 20 or more venture capital backed companies: Berlin (25), Toronto and Boulder (22 each), D.C., Paris, and Atlanta (21 each), and Denver with 20. The big takeaways? For one, these maps speak to the urban shift in the underlying model for high-technology start-ups. With its high-tech companies clustered in office parks along highway interchanges, Silicon Valley is the classic suburban nerdistan. But, at least according to these data, it appears to have been eclipsed by three more-urbanized areas. New York and London, admittedly much larger cities, both top it on start-up activity and the number of angel-funded companies, while the center of gravity for high-tech in the Bay Area has shifted somewhat from the valley to its more-urban neighbor San Francisco, which tops it in start-up activity, angel-funded, and venture capital-backed companies. The globalization of start-ups is the second big takeaway. American cities and metros — like Boston-Cambridge, L.A., Seattle, San Diego, Washington, D.C., Chicago, and Austin, as well as New York and San Francisco — all do very well. But London now ranks in the very top tier of start-up cities, while Toronto and Vancouver in Canada; Berlin (so much for the argument that Berlin is a lagging bohemian center with hardly any tech or entrepreneurial future), Paris, Amsterdam, Dublin, Madrid, and Barcelona in Europe; Bangalore, New Delhi, and Mumbai in India; Singapore and Sydney in the Asia Pacific region; and Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro in South America each have significant clusters of start-up activity. The world, as I have written, is spiky, with its most intensive economic activity concentrated in a relative handful of places. Global tech is no exception — and it is taking a decidedly urban turn. All maps by the Martin Prosperity Institute's Zara Matheson; Map data via Seedtable Keywords: London, New York, San Francisco, Maps, Start-Up, Venture Capital, Cities Richard Florida is Co-Founder and Editor at Large at The Atlantic Cities. He's also a Senior Editor at The Atlantic, Director of the Martin Prosperity Institute at the University of Toronto's Rotman School of Management, and Global Research Professor at New York University. He is a frequent speaker to communities, business and professional organizations, and founder of the Creative Class Group, whose current client list can be found here.
  10. There are an article in The Gazette (which I shall put after this post) that speaks about Montreal embracing open data. Also, anybody every been to Ottawa, Quebec? lol How Open Data Initiatives Can Improve City Life by Aliza Sherman Major city governments across North America are looking for ways to share civic data — which normally resides behind secure firewalls — with private developers who can leverage it to serve city residents via web and mobile apps. Cities can spend on average between $20,000 and $50,000 — even as much as $100,000 — to cover the costs of opening data, but that’s a small price to pay when you consider how much is needed to develop a custom application that might not be nearly as useful. Here are a few examples of initiatives that are striving to make city governments more efficient and transparent through open data. 1. Apps4Ottawa – Ottawa, Quebec Careful to adhere to security and privacy regulations for their open data program, the City of Ottawa started sharing data in several areas: geo-spatial (roadways, parks, runways, rivers, and ward boundaries); recreation facilities; event planning; civic elections data; and transit, including schedules. Other data the city is pursuing includes tree inventory, collections schedules for garbage, recycling and compost, and bike and foot paths. Ottawa aligned their first open data contest, Apps4Ottawa, with the school year (September 2010 to January 2011 ) to involve colleges and universities as well as residents and local industry. Categories for the contest included “Having Fun in Ottawa,” “Getting Around,” “Green Environment/Sustainability,” “Community Building,” and “Economic Development.” The winner is scheduled to be announced later this evening. Guy Michaud, chief information officer for the City of Ottawa, said their open data efforts have already spurred economic development and is meant to be good for local entrepreneurs. The city receives no revenue through the apps, and the developers can sell what they create. In turn, Ottawa residents get improved services from applications that are created, with better access to city data and more user-friendly formats and platforms. 2. CivicApps.org – Portland, Oregon After tracking Vivek Kundra’s efforts at the federal level with data.gov, Portland, Oregon launched CivicApps.org, a project initiated out of the mayor’s office to bring a more localized approach to the open data movement. Skip Newberry, economic policy advisor to the mayor, say that the project’s main objective is to improve connections and the flow of information between local government and its constituents, as well as between city bureaus. To call attention to the release of public data, they also launched an app design contest, highlighting the tech talent in Portland’s software community. According to Rick Nixon, program manager for the Bureau of Technology’s Open Data Initiative for the city of Portland, CivicApps.org took a more regional approach to cover the multiple layers of local government: County, Metro, TriMet, and the City of Portland, all of which collect and maintain various kinds of public data. Data sets released include regional crime, transit, infrastructure (i.e. public works), and economic development programs. Additional projects, such as the PDX API, have been launched in order to make the raw data from CivicApps more useful to developers. In addition to developer-specific apps, a number of transit related apps — bike, train, bus, mixed modes — were also developed. A very popular and established transit app, PDXBus, was re-released as open source under the rules of the CivicApps contest. Other popular apps helped provide residents greater awareness of their surroundings such as where to find heritage trees, where to find urban edibles, and where to locate each other during disaster relief efforts. 3. CityWide Data Warehouse – Washington, DC For years, the District of Columbia provided public access to city operational data via the Internet. In keeping with the mayor’s promise to be transparent, the program CityWide Data Warehouse was launched, and provides citizens with access to over 450 datasets from multiple agencies. The first two datasets released were service requests from the mayor’s call center, including trash pickup, pot hole repair, street light repair, snow removal, parking meter issues and crime data. According to David Stirgel, program manager for Citywide Data Warehouse, the project looks for data that be of interest to the widest possible audience and which will remain reusable over time. Some of the applications that have come out of the program include Track DC, which tracks the performance of individual District agencies, and summary reports that provide public access to city operational data. Some of the applications built by companies and individuals using the data include Crime Reports and Every Block. In 2008, the District Mayor’s office, the District of Columbia’s Office of the Chief Technology Officer, and digital agency iStrategyLabs launched Apps for Democracy, an open code app development contest tapping into District data that cost $50,000 and generated 47 apps. The contest was repeated in 2009. Over 200 ideas and applications were submitted, and the winner was an iPhone and Facebook app called Social DC 311. It could be used to submit service requests, such as reporting potholes and trash problems. An honorable mention was given to FixMyCityDC. Unfortunately, neither app is maintained today. 4. NYC Data Mine – New York, NY NYC BigApps 2.0 is part of an initiative to improve the accessibility, transparency, and accountability of city government. According to Brandon Kessler, CEO of ChallengePost, the company and technology powering the NYC BigApps 2.0 Software Challenge, Mayor Bloomberg challenged software developers to use city data from the NYC.gov Data Mine to create apps to improve NYC, offering a $20,000 in cash awards to the winners. The second annual challenge closed its call for submissions at the end of January 2011 and opened the vote to the public. Voting ends on March 9. Requirements included that the software applications be original and solely owned by the entrants, that they use at least one of the datasets from the NYC.gov Data Mine, and be free to the public throughout the competition and for at least one year after the challenge. The panel of judges reads like a “who’s who” of New York tech luminaries, and includes Esther Dyson of EDVenture, Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures, Jack Dorsey of Square and Twitter, and Kara Swisher of All Things Digital. One of the first year’s winning apps was WayFinder, an augmented reality Android app which allows users to point their phone in a direction and see which subways and Path trains are in front of them. 5. DataSF – San Francisco, California Like other city governments, San Francisco’s goal for their DataSF program was to improve transparency and community engagement as well as accountability. Ron Vinson, director of media for the city’s Department of Technology also stated potential for innovation in how residents interact with government and their community. With an emphasis on adhering to privacy and security policies, the city can stimulate the creation of useful civic tools at no cost to the government. Before launching, they reached out to Washington, DC to identify the most popular datasets, and learned that 20% of the datasets represented over 80% of the downloads. With this information, they went out first with crime, 311, and GIS data. They also allowed the public to request data through a submissions mechanism on the website where others could vote on their suggestions. This input is now required reading for the city administrator thanks to an executive directive and open data legislation. Since launching in August 2009, DataSF has accumulated over 60 applications in its showcase. According to Vinson, the city stays engaged with their tech community by participating in local unconferences and meetups. http://mashable.com/2011/02/15/how-open-data-initiatives-can-improve-city-life/
  11. Un ami à moi m'a refilé ce lien. Il nous lit parfois mais n'est pas membre. Il m'a dit que ça nous intéresserait. En effet!! Bien qu'il faille toujours demeurer prudent avec ce genre d'exercice, ça détonne tout de même dans le paysage médiatique actuel concernant la circulation à Montréal! Enjoy! http://gizmodo.com/5838333/the-most-horrific-traffic-in-the-entire-world
  12. Analysis of Flickr photos could lead to online travel books Representative images for the top landmark in each of the top 20 North American cities. All parts of the figure, including images, textual labels and the map itself, were produced automatically from the researchers' geo-tagged photos. April 28th, 2009 By Paul Redfern Cornell scientists have downloaded and analyzed nearly 35 million Flickr photos taken by more than 300,000 photographers from around the globe, using a supercomputer at the Cornell Center for Advanced Computing (CAC). Their research, which was presented at the International World Wide Web Conference in Madrid, April 20-24, provides a new and practical way to automatically organize, label and summarize large-scale collections of digital images. The scalability of the method allows for mining information latent in very large sets of images, raising the intriguing possibility of an online travel guidebook that could automatically identify the best sites to visit on a vacation, as judged by the collective wisdom of the world's photographers. The research also generated statistics on the world's most photographed cities and landmarks, gleaned from the analysis of the multi-terabyte photo collection: • The top 25 most photographed cities in the Flickr data are (in order): New York City, London, San Francisco, Paris, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington, D.C., Seattle, Rome, Amsterdam, Boston, Barcelona, San Diego, Berlin, Las Vegas, Florence, Toronto, Milan, Vancouver, Madrid, Venice, Philadelphia, Austin, Dublin, Portland. • The top seven most photographed landmarks are (in order): Eiffel Tower, Paris; Trafalgar Square, London; Tate Modern museum, London; Big Ben, London; Notre Dame, Paris; The Eye, London; the Empire State Building, New York City. Interestingly, the Apple Store in midtown Manhattan was the fifth-most photographed place in New York City -- and the 28th-most photographed place in the world. The researchers developed techniques to identify places that people find interesting to photograph, showing results for thousands of locations at both city and landmark scales. "We developed classification methods for characterizing these locations from visual, textual and temporal features," said Daniel Huttenlocher, the John P. and Rilla Neafsey Professor of Computing, Information Science and Business and Stephen H. Weiss fellow. "These methods reveal that both visual and temporal features improve the ability to estimate the location of a photo compared to using just textual tags." As the creation of digital data accelerates, said CAC director David Lifka, "supercomputers and high-performance storage systems will be essential in order to quickly store, archive, preserve and retrieve large-scale data collections." The research was supported in part by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and by funding from Google, Yahoo! and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. The CAC is supported by Cornell, the NSF, the Department of Defense, the Department of Agriculture and members of its corporate program. http://www.cs.cornell.edu/~dph/paper...omap-www09.pdf .
  13. Toronto a suburb? It's begun RENÉ JOHNSTON/TORONTO STAR Apr 08, 2009 04:30 AM Vanessa Lu city hall bureau chief Toronto is at risk of becoming a bedroom community for the booming 905 regions, warns a new report by the Toronto Board of Trade. Cities that were once outer suburbs are now growing employment areas as more businesses have pulled up stakes in the downtown core for cheaper real estate. Meanwhile, the city itself faces increasing disparity between the wealthy, who buy downtown condos where factories once stood, and the poor who inhabit the increasingly deprived inner suburbs. So Toronto remains an attractive place to live, but struggles to keep up with its neighbours on key economic indicators such as employment, productivity and income growth. "It's a tale of two cities," president and CEO Carol Wilding said at yesterday's release. "We see the reverse, or mirror images, from the city proper versus the 905." Wilding agreed with a release for the report that said Toronto has become a "magnet for living, while the surrounding municipalities form the more powerful economic engine." "If you stand back, the data shows that at this point," said Wilding. "Given the employment growth that isn't there in the city centre – yet it is a hugely attractive place – suggests the doughnut effect. ... People flock to and live in the city ... but are actually travelling outwards in the region for employment opportunities." The split between the two regions is reflected in a prosperity scorecard that compares the Toronto region with 20 others around the world on 25 important indicators. While the Toronto region scored very well overall – tying for fourth place with Boston, New York and London, but behind Calgary, Dallas and Hong Kong – the findings show a growing gap between the city itself and surrounding communities. (The study is based on the Toronto Census Metropolitan Area, a tract that includes most of the GTA except Burlington and Oshawa.) If the 416 and 905 area codes were ranked separately, the suburban regions would have taken second place on the world list – after Calgary – and Toronto would have fallen into the bottom half. But Wilding credited Toronto city hall for taking steps to counteract the trend and boost economic growth, including a policy of gradually shifting more of the property tax burden from commercial and industrial property onto homeowners. "I think from a policy perspective, we've put in place many of the changes the data would have suggested we do ... two years ago. We didn't wait," Mayor David Miller said yesterday, reacting to the report. However, he said, "Toronto starts from a very good place" as Canada's financial capital and the third biggest centre of information communications technology in North America. "Council adopted a strategy two years ago because we didn't believe we could take success for granted," he added. "And I think the underlying data says we took the right step and we're on the right path." He noted both the tax rate cuts and the creation of two new agencies, Build Toronto and Invest Toronto, to lure business and investment to the city. Given that traffic is now jammed both ways on the Gardiner Expressway and the Don Valley Parkway in the morning rush hour, it hardly comes as a surprise that employment growth has been strong outside Toronto proper. But the data shows the gap is "far larger than people would have expected it to be," Wilding said. Employment in the suburban regions grew by an average of 2.8 per cent a year between 2002 and 2007, compared with 1.1 per cent in the city of Toronto. In fact, most of the employment growth over the past two decades has occurred outside Toronto. "That's a significant divide. Until we start to narrow that, then we aren't serving the interests of the region as a whole," Wilding said. Average real GDP growth during the same period was just 1.2 per cent in Toronto – compared with 4.2 per cent in neighbouring cities. After-tax income growth over the same period was 3.5 per cent in Toronto, compared with 5.9 per cent outside. Deputy Mayor Joe Pantalone said the report's data is already a couple of years old and doesn't reflect recent actions the city has taken to stem the flow of jobs. The report cites a 10.2 per cent growth in non-residential building permits in the surrounding regions, versus only 8.9 per cent in the city. But Pantalone pointed out that today, 4 million square feet of office buildings are under construction in Toronto, compared with only 1.5 million square feet in the 905. "That's a historical reversal. It shows those policies are working," he said. "We have established new trend lines to correct that. And it seems to be working." As Miller pointed out, the report isn't all bad news for the city. It notes that Toronto is "a study in contrasts, struggling to keep pace on the economic fundamentals but scoring well on all the attributes of an attractive city." Using research from the Conference Board of Canada, the report points out the city is doing well on indicators such as commuter travel choices, a young labour force, university education and percentage of jobs in the cultural industry. New infrastructure investments by the province, notably in transit, will also help make Toronto more competitive. Some 44 per cent of Toronto residents walk, bike or take transit to work, while only 13 per cent of residents outside Toronto do. One of Toronto's biggest advantages is its diversity, with immigrants making up close to half of the city's residents. That puts it at Number 1 among the 21 global cities, above Los Angeles at 41 per cent and New York at 36 per cent. But Board of Trade chair Paul Massara warned that the talent that exists among newcomers must not be squandered – and their integration has to be ensured. "It's absolutely essential that we get this productive part of the economy working and enhance that," Massara said, noting governments have been working to improve settlement services. With files from Paul Moloney
  14. Telus announces $33 million "Green" Internet data centre Wednesday, 08 October 2008 Telus announces $33 million "Green" Internet data centreTelus today announced that it would be investing over $33 million to build a more energy efficient Internet data centre to be located in Laval, Quebec. The company says the state-of-the-art facility will be designed according to the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards. An Internet data centre is a highly secure building that houses extremely powerful computer servers; all of which have redundant power, cooling and security systems. Recent estimates suggest that data centres now consume about 1 to 1.5% of all energy produced in North America and its share is growing therefore, longer term, greener data centres could make a significant dent in overall energy consumption. Telus, which currently operates eight data centres across Canada, says its newest Internet data centre will be a 44,500 square foot facility that will be connected to six mega-volt-amps of power, equivalent to the needs of more than 5,000 homes! In addition to the power required to power individual computer servers, data centers require a vast amount energy to counter the heat generated by the computer servers. The new data center features a high density power design and efficient heat exchange system will turn Quebec's cold climate into "free cooling" during two thirds of the year. Large, highly efficient air conditioning units will be used when "free cooling" is unavailable. The company says its newest, greenest Internet data centre will become operational in 2010.
  15. Greece | Oil | Keystone XL | RRSPs | BoC | Apple | Target | Bombardier How the falling loonie and low rates could lure more foreign investors to Canadian housing Republish Reprint Garry Marr | February 26, 2015 | Last Updated: Feb 26 7:12 PM ET More from Garry Marr | @DustyWallet Twitter Google+ LinkedIn Email Typo? More Jason Payne/Postmedia News, file Jason Payne/Postmedia News, fileLennon Sweeting, a Toronto-based dealer with US Forex which trades in currencies, says the loonie is making housing more attractive to foreign buyers. Canada’s two priciest housing markets may not need the boost, but Toronto and Vancouver could be on the verge of a spike in foreign investment. Toronto's rental market reborn as housing prices surge out of reach for many ‘There’s a huge demand for rental… We are seeing for the first time in 40 years people are starting to build rental,’ says managing director of Timbercreek Asset Management With the loonie falling about 10% against the U.S. dollar in the last six months, foreigners who have their money parked in greenbacks or in currencies pegged to the American dollar are likely to ramp up their interest in the Canadian marketplace, say industry experts. Alberta, which is now facing a crunch of new listings and weak demand, is unlikely to see any benefit as investors run away from the province over oil price fears. “The reputation of the oilpatch here has been tarnished a bit,” says Dan Scarrow, the Shanghai-based managing director of Canadian Real Estate Investment Centre, which was set up just two months ago, and is run by Vancouver-based Macdonald Real Estate Group. He says the opposite is true in Vancouver and Toronto, where prices in January were up 7.5% and 6.1% respectively from a year ago, according to the Canadian Real Estate Association. “With the Chinese economy slowing down a bit and with the Canadian dollar depreciating 20% versus the RMB, it might change the calculus of some people of how much they want to leave in China and how much they want to bring to Canada.” To [foreign investors], the Canadian market has gone on sale Mr. Scarrow’s firm caused a stir last year with data it produced from its client base that showed 33.5% of all single-family homes sales in the Vancouver area could be traced to buyers from mainland China. Foreign buyers and their position in the marketplace have been a concern for some market watchers, who fear these investors are inflating housing prices. But there hasn’t been definitive data. Even the chief executive of Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp., Evan Siddall, conceded there were data gaps. The Crown corporation finally produced data two months ago on the condominium market that showed as much as 2.4% of Toronto highrises were in foreign hands and 2.3% in Vancouver, with some people still disputing those findings. Mr. Scarrow says in terms of Chinese investors they are divided between people still living overseas and people already living in Canada but with money still parked in RMBs. With Chinese New Year over, he expects investment to pick up. Related Foreign buyers taking over — this time it's Canadians in Florida IMF says housing in Canada overvalued by as much as 20% “Decisions have been held off until this week,” he says. “There is a lag for these things in terms of stats and what we see on the ground.” Brian Johnston, chief operating officer of Toronto-based Mattamy Homes, has never been a believer of the idea that foreign investment was a huge factor in Canadian housing, but he says when you get can a 10% to 20% currency swing it has to be positive. “To [foreign investors], the Canadian market has gone on sale,” said Mr. Johnston, noting his company also develops property in the United States it tries to sell to Canadians. “The reverse is true for them. The price of U.S. real estate just went up by 10%.” Lennon Sweeting, a Toront0-based dealer with US Forex which trades in currencies, says the loonie is making housing more attractive to foreign buyers. “The Bank of Canada has tried to offset lower prices with a weaker currency making investing in Canada more attractive,” said Mr. Sweeting, adding most high net worth investors are likely holding U.S. dollars right now. “Absolutely it makes it easier to buy [Canadian real estate]. If you’re holding U.S. dollars you are looking at buying at a discount and there’s plenty of supply.” Low interest rates have also boosted demand, even though foreign investors tend to have to put up larger down payments when borrowing to buy property. Shaun Hildebrand, senior vice-president at condo research firm Urbanation Inc., noted new condo sales in the Greater Toronto Area in 2014 rose over 50% from a year ago but it’s hard to pinpoint how much is attributable to foreign investors. “I wouldn’t be surprised at all to see more foreign investment in 2015,” said Mr. Hildebrand, adding surveys of Urbanation clients peg the foreign component of Toronto’s condo market at just under 5%. sent via Tapatalk
  16. Lots to lose: how cities around the world are eliminating car parks | Cities | The Guardian Cities Lots to lose: how cities around the world are eliminating car parks It’s a traditional complaint about urban life: there’s never anywhere to park. But in the 21st century, do cities actually need less parking space, not more? Paris has banned traffic from half the city. Why can’t London? Houston, Texas Parking lots dominate the landscape in downtown, Houston, Texas. ‘Though the perception is always that there’s never enough parking, the reality is often different,’ says Hank Willson. Photograph: Alamy Cities is supported by Rockefeller Foundation's logoAbout this content Nate Berg Tuesday 27 September 2016 12.23 BST Last modified on Tuesday 27 September 2016 15.51 BST With space for roughly 20,000 cars, the parking lot that surrounds the West Edmonton Mall in Alberta, Canada, is recognised as the largest car park in the world. Spread across vast expanses of asphalt and multi-storey concrete structures, these parking spots take up about half the mall’s 5.2m sq ft, on what was once the edge of the city of Edmonton. A few blocks away, a similar amount of space is taken up by a neighbourhood of nearly 500 homes. Despite its huge scale, the West Edmonton Mall’s parking lot is not all that different from most car parks around the world. Requiring roughly 200 sq ft per car plus room to maneuvre, they tend to be big, flat and not fully occupied. Often their size eclipses the buildings they serve. Even when they’re hidden in underground structures or built into skyscrapers, car parks are big and often empty: parking at homes tends to be vacant during the workday, parking at work vacant at night. A 2010 study of Tippecanoe County, Indiana found there was an average of 2.2 parking spaces for each registered car. The US has long been the world leader in building parking spaces. During the mid 20th century, city zoning codes began to include requirements and quotas for most developments to include parking spaces. The supply skyrocketed. A 2011 study by the University of California, estimated there are upwards of 800m parking spaces in the US, covering about 25,000 square miles of land. Nobody goes to a city because it has great parking Michael Kodransky “As parking regulations were put into zoning codes, most of the downtowns in many cities were just completely decimated,” says Michael Kodransky, global research manager for the Institute of Transportation and Development Policy. “What the cities got, in effect, was great parking. But nobody goes to a city because it has great parking.” Increasingly, cities are rethinking this approach. As cities across the world begin to prioritise walkable urban development and the type of city living that does not require a car for every trip, city officials are beginning to move away from blanket policies of providing abundant parking. Many are adjusting zoning rules that require certain minimum amounts of parking for specific types of development. Others are tweaking prices to discourage driving as a default when other options are available. Some are even actively preventing new parking spaces from being built. A typical road in San Francisco. A road in San Francisco. Photograph: Getty To better understand how much parking they have and how much they can afford to lose, transportation officials in San Francisco in 2010 released the results of what’s believed to be the first citywide census of parking spaces. They counted every publicly accessible parking space in the city, including lots, garages, and free and metered street parking. They found that the city had 441,541 spaces, and more than half of them are free, on-street spaces. “The hope was that it would show that there’s actually a lot of parking here. We’re devoting a lot of space in San Francisco to parking cars,” says Hank Willson, principal analyst at the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency. “And though the perception is always that there’s never enough parking, the reality is different.” Knowing the parking inventory has made it easier for the city to pursue public space improvements such as adding bike lanes or parklets, using the data to quell inevitable neighbourhood concerns about parking loss. “We can show that removing 20 spaces can just equate to removing 0.1% of the parking spaces within walking distance of a location,” says Steph Nelson of the SFMTA. The data helps planners to understand when new developments actually need to provide parking spaces and when the available inventory is sufficient. More often, the data shows that the city can’t build its way out of a parking shortage – whether it’s perceived or real – and that the answers lie in alternative transportation options. Parking atop a supermarket roof in Budapest, Hungary. A parking lot on a supermarket roof in Budapest, Hungary. Photograph: Alamy With this in mind, the city has implemented the type of dynamic pricing system proposed by Donald Shoup, a distinguished research professor of urban planning at the University of California, Los Angeles. In his book The High Cost of Free Parking, Shoup explains that free or very cheap on-street parking contributes to traffic congestion in a major way. A study of the neighbourhood near UCLA’s campus showed that drivers cruised the area looking for parking for an average of 3.3 minutes. Based on the number of parking spaces there, that adds up to about 950,000 extra miles travelled over the course of a year, burning 47,000 gallons of gasoline and emitting 730 tons of CO2. After San Francisco implemented a pilot project with real-time data on parking availability and dynamic pricing for spaces, an evaluation found that the amount of time people spent looking for parking fell by 43%. And though there’s no data available on whether that’s meant more people deciding not to drive to San Francisco, various researchers have shown that a 10% increase in the price of parking can reduce demand between 3-10%. Sometimes, the supply of parking goes down because nobody needs it. Since 1990, the city of Philadelphia has conducted an inventory of parking every five years in the downtown Center City neighbourhood, counting publicly accessible parking spaces and analysing occupancy rates in facilities with 30 or more spaces. Because of plentiful transit options, a walkable environment and a high downtown residential population, Philadelphia is finding that it needs less parking. Between 2010 and 2015, the amount of off-street parking around downtown shrank by about 3,000 spaces, a 7% reduction. Most of that is tied to the replacement of surface lots with new development, according to Mason Austin, a planner at the Philadelphia City Planning Commission and co-author of the most recent parking inventory. Philadelphia Planners in Philadelphia have noted the decrease in demand for parking, and reduced spaces accordingly. Photograph: Andriy Prokopenko/Getty Images “At the same time, we’re seeing occupancy go down by a very small amount. So what that’s telling us is the demand for this public parking is going down slightly,” Austin says. “And that could be alarming if we were also seeing some decline of economic activity, but actually that’s happening at the same time as we’re seeing employment go up and retail vibrancy go up.” And though many cities in the US are changing zoning and parking requirements to reduce or even eliminate parking minimums, cities in Europe are taking a more forceful approach. Zurich, has been among the most aggressive. In 1996, the city decreed that there would be no more parking: officials placed a cap on the amount of parking spaces that would exist there, putting in place a trading system by which any developer proposing new parking spaces would be required to remove that many parking spaces from the city’s streets. The result has been that the city’s streets have become even more amenable to walking, cycling and transit use. Copenhagen has also been reducing the amount of parking in the central city. Pedestrianising shopping streets raising prices of parking and licences and developing underground facilites on the city’s outskirts has seen city-centre parking spaces shrink and the proportion of people driving to work fall from 22% to 16%. Paris has been even more aggressive. Starting in 2003, the city began eliminating on-street parking and replacing it with underground facilities. Roughly 15,000 surface parking spaces have been eliminated since. A world without cars: cities go car-free for the day - in pictures View gallery But progress is not limited to Europe. Kodransky says cities all over the world are rethinking their parking policies. São Paulo, for instance, got rid of its minimum parking requirements and implemented a maximum that could be built into specific projects. Beijing, Shenzhen and Guangzhou are hoping to emulate San Francisco’s dynamic pricing approach. And as cities begin to think more carefully about how parking relates to their urban development, their density and their transit accessibility, it’s likely that parking spaces will continue to decline around the world. “Ultimately parking needs to be tackled as part of a package of issues,” Kodransky says. “It’s been viewed in this super-narrow way, it’s been an afterthought. But increasingly cities are waking up to the fact that they have this sleeping giant, these land uses that are not being used in the most optimal way.” Follow Guardian Cities on Twitter and Facebook to join the discussion.
  17. Article intéressant... IMF debunks myth: Taxing rich not bad for economy OTTAWA -- A new paper by researchers at the International Monetary Fund appears to debunk a tenet of conservative economic ideology -- that taxing the rich to give to the poor is bad for the economy. The paper by IMF researchers Jonathan Ostry, Andrew Berg and Charalambos Tsangarides will be applauded by politicians and economists who regard high levels of income inequality as not only a moral stain on society but also economically unsound. Labelled as the first study to incorporate recently compiled figures comparing pre- and post-tax data from a large number of countries, the authors say there is convincing evidence that lower net inequality is good economics, boosting growth and leading to longer-lasting periods of expansion. In the most controversial finding, the study concludes that redistributing wealth, largely through taxation, does not significantly impact growth unless the intervention is extreme. In fact, because redistributing wealth through taxation has the positive impact of reducing inequality, the overall affect on the economy is to boost growth, the researchers conclude. "We find that higher inequality seems to lower growth. Redistribution, in contrast, has a tiny and statistically insignificant (slightly negative) effect," the paper states. "This implies that, rather than a trade-off, the average result across the sample is a win-win situation, in which redistribution has an overall pro-growth effect." While the paper is heavy on the economics, there is no mistaking the political implications in the findings. In Canada, the Liberal party led by Justin Trudeau is set to make supporting the middle class a key plank in the upcoming election and the NDP has also stressed the importance of tackling income inequality. Stephen Harper's Conservatives have boasted that tax cuts, particularly deep reductions in corporate taxation, are at least partly responsible for why the Canadian economy outperformed other G7 countries both during and after the 2008-09 recession. In the Commons on Tuesday, Employment Minister Jason Kenney said the many tax cuts his government has introduced since 2006, including a two-percentage-point trim of the GST, has helped most Canadians. Speaking on a Statistics Canada report showing net median family wealth had increased by 44.5 per cent since 2005, he added: "It is no coincidence because, with the more than 160 tax cuts by this government, Canadian families, on average, have seen their after-tax disposable income increase by 10 per cent across all income categories. We are continuing to lead the world on economic growth and opportunity for working families." The authors concede that their conclusions tend to contradict some well-accepted orthodoxy, which holds that taxation is a job killer. But they say that many previous studies failed to make a distinction between pre-tax inequality and post-tax inequality, hence often compared apples to oranges, among other shortcomings. The data they looked at showed almost no negative impact from redistribution policies and that economies where incomes are more equally distributed tend to grow faster and have growth cycles that last longer. Meanwhile, they say the data is not crystal clear that even large redistributions have a direct negative impact, although "from history and first principles ... after some point redistribution will be destructive of growth." Still, they also stop short of saying their conclusions definitively settle the issue, acknowledging that it is a complex area of economic theory with many variables at play and a scarcity of hard data. Instead, they urge more rigorous study and say their findings "highlight the urgency of this agenda." The Washington-based institution released the study Wednesday morning but, perhaps due to the controversial nature of the conclusions, calls it a "staff discussion note" that does "not necessarily" represent the IMF views or policy. It was authorized for distribution by Olivier Blanchard, the IMF's chief economist. Read more: http://www.ctvnews.ca/business/imf-debunks-myth-taxing-rich-not-bad-for-economy-1.1704643#ixzz2uRo5ElZH
  18. How safe is your métro station? http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Montrealers+safe+your+m%C3%A9tro+station/8972463/story.html Quiet stations tend to have more crime per capita Berri-UQÀM, in eastern downtown, recorded 12.5 million boardings in 2009. There were 20.4 crimes per 1 million boardings. Photograph by: Marie-France Coallier , Marie-France Coallier MONTREAL - For the first time, Montrealers can find out which métro stations see the most crimes. Turns out some least-used subway stops have the highest per capita crime rates. The Gazette has obtained station-by-station statistics after Quebec’s access-to-information commission sided with the newspaper in a three-year battle with the Montreal police department. The figures cover 2008 and 2009, as police only revealed partial information for more recent years. Between 2008 and 2009, criminality jumped at 38 of 64 stations patrolled by Montreal police. At 13 of those, the number of criminal infractions more than doubled. The network’s busiest station, Berri-UQÀM — a transfer point served by three métro lines — saw the largest number of crimes. There were 255 crimes in 2009, up from 243 the previous year. In 2009, 18 stations saw at least 10 crimes involving violence or threat of violence (“crimes against the person”), including Berri-UQÀM (59 cases), Lionel-Groulx (33), Sherbrooke (20) and Vendôme, Snowdon and Jean-Talon (17 each). For every station, The Gazette calculated the number of criminal prosecutions per 1 million passengers who entered the network there. Berri-UQÀM, in eastern downtown, recorded 12.5 million boardings in 2009. There were 20.4 crimes per 1 million boardings. But it was Georges-Vanier, in Little Burgundy southwest of downtown, that recorded the most crimes per capita. At that station — the network’s least used with only 742,000 boardings in 2009 — there were 28.3 crimes per 1 million boardings. Georges-Vanier is a reatlively desolate location, especially at night. It’s next to the Ville-Marie Expressway and no buses serve the station. Beaudry and Monk stations are other examples. Both are among the bottom five for boardings but in the Top 5 for per capita crimes. Click for an interactive map showing crimes in the métro. Reading this on a mobile device? Find the link at the end of the story. The figures give only an approximation of station-per-capita crime rates. The STM only maintains statistics for the number of people who pass through turnstiles at individual métro stations. That means ridership figures used in these calculations only give an idea of how busy stations are. Some stations have few people entering but a high number of passengers disembarking. In addition, transfer stations are busier than boarding figures would suggest because passengers there move from one line to another without going through turnstiles. Bylaw infractions, including graffiti and malicious damage to STM property, were also detailed in the 2008-09 statistics. In more than one-quarter of Montreal métro stations, there were at least 10 bylaw infractions in 2009, with Berri-UQÀM (378 incidents), Sherbrooke (76) and Atwater (67) having the most. The figures obtained by The Gazette cover the 64 stations on Montreal Island and Île Ste-Hélène. Laval and Longueuil stations are patrolled by their respective police forces. Every year, Montreal police publish crime statistics for the entire métro network, but the force has resisted providing more detailed data. After failing to convince the access commission that the data should be kept secret (see sidebar), police recently provided The Gazette with the number of crimes and bylaw infractions at every station in 2008 and 2009. But when the newspaper subsequently requested 2010, 2011 and 2012 statistics, the department did not provide comparable data. Instead, it lumped incidents such as lost objects and calls for ambulances with crimes and bylaw infractions, rendering the 2010-12 statistics almost meaningless. The Gazette is appealing the police department's decision to keep the 2010-12 crime figures under wraps. Police and the STM say Montreal has a very low subway crime rate compared with other cities. Crimes in the métro are relatively rare and the métro's overall crime rate has dropped significantly between 2008 and 2012. Montreal police started patrolling the network in 2007. Before that, STM officers were in charge of security in the métro system. The Gazette sought the station-by-station figures so it could tell readers at which station passengers are the most likely to become the victim of a crime or to witness crimes or bylaw infractions. Making the data public also allows the public to monitor progress in reducing incidents at particular stations. [email protected] Twitter: andyriga Facebook: AndyRigaMontreal © Copyright © The Montreal Gazette
  19. http://www.theatlanticcities.com/ https://www.facebook.com/TheAtlanticCities About The Atlantic Cities The Atlantic Cities explores the most innovative ideas and pressing issues facing today’s global cities and neighborhoods. By bringing together news, analysis, data, and trends, the site is an engaging destination for an increasingly urbanized world.
  20. Infographic: Every Person In The U.S. And Canada, On One Crazy, Zoomable Map FORGET LAKES, RIVERS, STATES, AND CAPITALS--THIS MAP JUST SHOWS PEOPLE. ALL OF 'EM. Most maps are curious combinations of the natural and the man-made, charts that show us the rivers, lakes, and mountains that have developed across millenia as well as the lines we humans have established, in much more recent history, to divide them all up. But this map by Brandon Martin-Anderson, a graduate student at MIT’s Changing Places lab, shows one thing and one thing only: people, as counted in the most recent U.S. and Canadian censuses. Martin-Anderson’s map (which is really worth a look in its full, zoomable glory) is dizzyingly dense, with some three hundred million data points, but it’s also exceedingly straightforward. One dot per person--nothing else. The designer says he got the idea when he was looking at a series of race and ethnicity dot density maps created by designer Eric Fischer. Curious about what his own neighborhood would look like in greater detail, he started plotting census data. "I started with the University District neighborhood in Seattle," he says, "but then I was curious about Seattle. Then I was curious about western Washington, then Washington, then the whole West Coast, then the U.S." At first glance, the picture it shows is understandable enough. Major cities are dense pockets of black, with more uninhabited white space cropping up as you move from east to west. But it’s remarkable just how pronounced that drop-off is moving from states like Minnesota, Iowa, and Missouri to the Dakotas, Nebraska, and Kansas, and the states beyond. As Martin-Anderson points out, that abrupt drop-off lines up neatly with the average precipitation experienced by those areas. "I love this a lot," he says, "because it illustrates the extent to which humans in large numbers act like something so simple and biological--like a field of grass growing under the reach of a sprinkler." Other observations from the mapmaker? For one thing, the map shows just how sparse northern Canada really is; 64% of the country’s population actually resides south of Seattle. It also illustrates some unique regional trends. The band of black along the Eastern Seaboard isn’t much of a surprise, but the metropolitan axis running from Atlanta to Raleigh-Durham is surprisingly dense. For Martin-Anderson, the process of making the map was also enlightening. Sifting through the census data, he found that the highest density blocks were prisons, dorms, barracks, homeless shelters, and luxury apartments. "It’s an extremely heterogeneous collection of outliers," he says. "People are prone to making politically charged statements about the goodness or badness of population density, but it’s very difficult to make any true and wide-reaching statements about areas with extremely high population density." But the project raises other questions still, mainly about the types of maps we make and use as a society. If the concept behind the dot-a-person map is so straightforward, and the results so insightful, why don’t we see them more often? The answer, says Martin-Anderson, can be traced to the fact that we’ve only recently become familiar with an easy-to-use tool for making sense of insanely dense, multi-scale maps: pinch-to-zoom. "I think designers are scared of overwhelming their users," he says, explaining the dearth of similar efforts until now. "Glancing around my computer’s screen right now I see maybe 3,000 characters of text or clickable regions--3,000 elements. The population map throws about 340 million objects at you at once, and I think most people’s intuition is that that’s just far too many things to display at once." But as we’ve all become masters of our maps apps, designers may need to change that assumption. "It’s super amazing how comfortable the average person is with zooming in and out of an image illustrating data with scale-free structure," the designer says. "I think it’s due to the tremendous amount of work that Apple and Google have done acclimating people to zooming. The majority of traffic to the map so far has been on devices where people are navigating through pinch-zoom. Point being: In the past, unfamiliarity and difficulty in zooming made scale-free graphics difficult, so designers either simplified them or ignored them. Now that people are used to zooming, we don’t have to make decisions for our users about where they should spend their attention. We can just give them everything at once." To test that theory for yourself, grab your iPad and check out the zoomable version of the map on Martin-Anderson’s site. http://bmander.com/dotmap/index.html Via : fastcodesign.com
  21. Ouch! The Startup Genome, which collects data to figure out what makes startups successful, has released its latest results. TechCrunch reported that, these are the 25 best startup ecosystems in the world: Silicon Valley (San Francisco, Palo Alto, San Jose, Oakland) New York City (NYC, Brooklyn) London Toronto Tel Aviv Los Angeles Singapore Sao Paulo Bangalore Moscow Paris Santiago Seattle Madrid Chicago Vancouver Berlin Boston Austin Mumbai Sydney Melbourne Warsaw Washington D.C. Montreal In Silicon Valley, for instance, the Startup Genome's data showed that it had the following characteristics, which attracted entrepreneurs: "Strong early stage funding ecosystem. More mentors. Most Ambitious. High Risk." New York, on the other hand, had the following characteristics: "Diverse. Niche Focus. Marketplace and Social Network focus. High risk." Please follow SAI on Twitter and Facebook. Follow Boonsri Dickinson on Twitter. Ask Boonsri A Question > Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/the-best-25-places-to-live-if-youre-starting-a-startup-2012-4#ixzz1rqyx4diF http://www.businessinsider.com/the-best-25-places-to-live-if-youre-starting-a-startup-2012-4
  22. Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/technology/million+supercomputer+just+cool/4947908/story.html#ixzz1PNeR8W5L
  23. Houston study lauds red light cameras despite uptick in accidents We all know we shouldn't mess with Texas. And Houston, Texans shouldn't mess around with statistics, because the folks running the show are going to come to any conclusions they want no matter what the statistics say. This is the easy part: a study of red light cameras in the city shows that accidents have actually increased at intersections with the cameras. These are the parts that are open to interpretation: most intersections only have one camera looking at one (out of four) directions of traffic, but the accident rate went up for traffic in the other three unmonitored directions; and, in the one monitored direction, "accidents remained relatively flat or showed only a slight increase." What do you make of that? Mayor Bill White and the study authors say the city in general is experiencing a swell in the number of collisions, and claim that collisions at the monitored intersections haven't risen as much as the wider municipal rate. Yet they have no data to back up an increase in citywide collisions, and no year-on-year accident data at intersections (let alone an explanation for the uptick). White said that a 40-percent year-on-year drop in red light citations in the month of October shows the program is working and keeping drivers more safe. Critics say that the program is nothing but a cash register for city government. The study's authors plan to study insurance industry findings to come up with more substantive conclusions. http://www.chron.com/disp/story.mpl/front/6185795.html