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Found 15 results

  1. St. Catherine Street: the changing of the guard Remember that little boutique where you bought the leather jacket 15 years ago? It’s gone. If you have not visited St.Catherine Street in Montreal since the early 1990s, you would not recognize it. Of the stores that were located in the prime area between Bishop and University, not more than fi ve are still in existence. The locallyowned stores are gone, replaced at first by national retail chains, which in turn are giving way to international chains. Storefront retail throughout North America has been in decline for many years. St. Catherine Street is the exception. Rental rates have quadrupled. Vacancies are nonexistent. It is not just any street. Fifteen kilometres long, St. Catherine comprises 1,200 stores, making it the largest concentration of retail outlets in Canada. The street is witness to 3,500 pedestrians per hour, 250,000 offi ce workers at lunchtime, and 100,000 students per day, keeping the street alive at all hours. Furthermore, eight subway stations, 30 kilometres of underground walkways with 178 entrances, and 2,000 underground stores totalling 36 million square feet (sq. ft.) of floor space are used by 500,000 people on a daily basis. In street front retail, if you don’t have a store on St. Catherine Street, you have not made it. There are two strategies for retail chains entering Quebec: 1) open a fl agship store on St. Catherine Street; or 2) open four or five stores in major malls around Montreal, and a flagship store on St. Catherine Street. At the corner of Peel and St. Catherine, three of the four corner stores have changed in the past year. The newcomers are H&M (Hennes & Mauritz of Sweden) with 20,000 sq. ft; Guess with 13,000 sq. ft; and American Eagle, with 17,000 sq. ft and Apple Store. In the last five years, more than 20 flagship stores have opened here, mostly multinationals, such as: Lululemon, Oakley, American Eagle, Esprit, Garage, Guess, Khiels, Geox, GNC, Ecco Shoes, H&M, Mango, French Connection, Quicksilver, Marciano and Adidas. The shortage of space forces stores to take minimal frontage on the ground floor, and more space on the second and third fl oors. Ground fl oor space that leased in the early 1990s for $50 net per sq. ft. (psf ), with the landlord offering $25 per sq. ft. for leasehold improvements, now leases for $200 net psf and up, plus $30 psf for operating costs and taxes. And some of the stores spend $5 million renovating the space. But as they say in Rolls Royce dealerships, if you have to ask the price, you can’t afford it. Some of these stores are not making money, but they are here for image and marketing purposes. All the other banners are here, so they have to be here too. Whereas the mixture of stores constantly evolves, most of the landlords have been here for 30 or 40 years. They have seen the market go up and down. In this market, they will turn down all but the best. For one vacancy last year, there were four multinational chains trying to outbid each other for the space. http://www.avisonyoung.com/library/pdf/National/Fall-Winter_2008_AY_National_Newsletter.pdf
  2. This is the same building as Angela Pizza. Walked by today, noticed some heavy renovations going on at "ground" floor level. All graffitis cleaned up. Peeked inside and saw plenty of ladders and fresh new walls. I think this is a handsome rugged building that deserves a facelift. Gives me NYC vibes. It's been abandoned for as long as I can remember though I think there was a dental clinic in there at some point. Googled a bit for 1668 Maisonneuve and found this listing as well as this Altus profile. [sTREETVIEW]https://maps.google.com/maps?q=maisonneuve+at+st-mathieu,+montreal&hl=en&ll=45.494924,-73.580168&spn=0.001765,0.004106&sll=45.55097,-73.702207&sspn=0.225754,0.525627&hnear=Maisonneuve+Blvd+W+%26+St+Mathieu+St,+Montreal,+Quebec,+Canada&t=m&z=19&layer=c&cbll=45.495001,-73.58008&panoid=-CcEf2QVZaTxF67hFVvEag&cbp=12,152.08,,0,-17.9[/sTREETVIEW]
  3. Some of the measures in the Snøhetta concept sound familiar... http://nymag.com/arts/architecture/features/times-square-2012-4/ Could it become a place where New Yorkers actually want to hang out? By Justin Davidson Published Apr 15, 2012 Snøhetta's plan for Times Square: a low-key, pedestrian-friendly base for the riot of lights above. (Photo: Rendering courtesy of MIR) For two decades, New Yorkers have viewed Times Square as the city’s heart of brightness, a candy-colored hellhole to be avoided whenever possible. At either end of a workday or just before curtain time, we may dart and jostle past slow-moving out-of-towners, but the notion of meeting friends for dinner at the Hard Rock Cafe or whiling away a weekend afternoon held rapt by the symphony of screens doesn’t cross our minds. Starting next fall, workers with jackhammers will tear apart the bow tie, temporarily making it an even less congenial place to hang out. But one major goal of the $45 million construction project is to persuade New Yorkers to love Times Square—to convince them that it’s not just a backdrop for a million daily snapshots but Manhattan’s most central, and most convivial, gathering spot. Architects and visionaries have often addressed that old ambition with high-energy concepts that gave us the current high-tech razzmatazz. Even in this round of ideas, the city has fended off proposals for colored LEDs embedded in the pavement, for ramps, staircases, pavilions, digital information kiosks, heat lamps, trees, lawns, canopies, and, of course, more video screens. Instead, the city hired the architectural firm Snøhetta to produce a quiet, even minimal design that doesn’t try vainly to compete with the glowing canyons. Its beauty lies in dark, heavy sobriety and a desire to be a lasting pedestal to the frenzied dazzle above. In the most straightforward sense, the new plan enshrines a transformation that has already taken place. Ever since vehicles were banned from Broadway between 42nd and 47th Streets, in 2009, Times Square has felt like a temporary art installation. Pedestrians have been able to step off the curb and into the weirdly motor-free street. Rickety red café tables, which replaced plastic beach chairs, dot a blue river painted on the asphalt. Streetlights, lampposts, mailboxes, hydrants, and pay phones remain clustered along the Broadway sidewalk, staying clear of nonexistent traffic. The new construction will eliminate that feeling of making do. Curbs will vanish. Pedestrian areas will be leveled and clad in tweedy concrete tiles that run lengthwise down Broadway and the Seventh Avenue sidewalks, meeting in an angled confluence of patterns. Nickel-size steel discs set into the pavement will catch the light and toss it back into the brilliant air. Instead of perching on metal chairs, loiterers will be able to sit, lean, sprawl, jump, and stand on ten massive black granite benches up to 50 feet long and five feet wide. Electrical and fiber-optic-cable outlets will be packed into the benches so that, for outdoor performances, special-event crews will no longer need to haul in noisy, diesel-burning generators or drape the square in cables and duct tape. Even on ordinary days, the square will be de-*cluttered of the traffic signs, bollards, cones, and boxes that cause foot traffic to seize up. With any luck, crowds will gather and mingle only in the center plain between the benches, leaving free-flowing channels on either side for the rest of us, who have somewhere to be, people! Originally based in Norway and now firmly ensconced in New York, Snøhetta in 2008 created one of the most successful public spaces in recent memory: the pedestrian pathway that winds its way around, inside, in front of, and on top of the firm’s new opera house in Oslo. It’s a cosmopolitan yet utterly local place, an exquisite juncture of sea, sky, and glacier-like building, which seems to be slipping calmly into the fjord. It suggests that the architects understand the interaction of local culture and public space. “We’re not trying to make an instant photograph of happiness,” says the firm’s co-founder Craig Dykers, explaining that Times Square needs a little grit. “There’s been quite a lot done to make the city feel more delicate, which is good, but we shouldn’t forget its industrial history. At Times Square, there were rivets on the old marquees, the steelwork on the signs was industrial, and the lighting was naked bulbs. We want that whole history to be reflected in the experience of the space.” That may be a lot to ask of benches and pavers. Toys ’R’ Us isn’t slinking back to the suburbs, and all the happy, shiny logos won’t be dimming anytime soon. But Times Square has always reinvented itself every decade or two, and it may be shifting again. It’s been the epicenter of the media world, but Condé Nast will soon be moving to the World Trade Center, and Google has settled in Chelsea. In the nineties, Times Square lured law firms and financial outfits with the city’s freshest, most technologically advanced office towers, but new models inexorably supersede the old, and this time they’ll be in lower Manhattan and Hudson Yards. This is not to say that the glitter is flaking off, only that the least likely option for the future is stasis, so Snøhetta had to design a permanent platform for the unpredictable. There are two distinct approaches to public-space renovations: the grand design and the perpetual tweak. If Snøhetta is pursuing the first path, the apostle of the second is Daniel Biederman, who led the fabulously successful renovation of Bryant Park in the early nineties and has been managing it ever since, filling it with activities, temporary structures, and retro details. “If I were the czar of Times Square design, I would do the traditional stuff: plants, kiosks, movable seating, games, programming—small touches,” Biederman says. “Most people look down as far as two feet from the ground and up to fourteen feet off the ground, so at Times Square they have a chance to waste a ton of money on a surface that nobody’s going to see.” Yet Bryant Park’s charms don’t constitute a recipe. Times Square is not a graciously bounded piazza, and it shouldn’t be a verdant oasis. It’s an accidental wedge formed by two major avenues. Seventh Avenue will keep its traffic, and so will the cross streets. Even below ground, ancient water mains, electrical lines, telephone cables, subway tunnels, and long-buried trolley tracks tangle chaotically. The square’s getting a face-lift and major surgery at the same time. Quaintness has no place here. Every bit of this area acts as a showcase of some kind. The new design is to the street what the M&M’s store is to candy and Good Morning America is to television: an urban launchpad for a global commodity. In this case, the product is the philosophy of public space preached by the Bloomberg administration’s impassioned transportation commissioner, Janette *Sadik-Khan. For decades, American cities have treated their streets as traffic conduits meant to speed cars along as efficiently as possible (which is often not very efficiently at all). Instead, the new thinking goes, they should be a flexible network equally comfortable for drivers and dawdlers, parents with strollers, cyclists, truckers, and anyone who would rather just sit for a while and rest. Until 2009, the theater district embodied the disjunction between the way streets were conceived and the way they were used, as Sadik-Khan points out with data-driven fervor. “Times Square had 137 percent more accidents and crashes than any other avenue in the area,” she says of the way she found it when she took office in 2007. “It was a hot spot of congestion. You had 356,000 people coming through on foot every day and less than 10 percent of the space allocated to pedestrians. It wasn’t working, and it was a problem that had been lying in plain sight for 200 years.” You remember: Crowds spilled over the curbs into the street, gridlock stranded taxis in the triangular crossroads, and hurried theatergoers battled through the stationary herds. The Times Square Alliance, which represents local businesses, suggested an incremental solution: Widen the sidewalks a little bit. Sadik-Khan one-upped them and completely closed five blocks of Broadway to traffic. The result was a harvest of happy data: fewer accidents, cleaner air, more satisfied survey respondents, and popular events like the Summer Solstice free yoga classes that last year attracted 6,000 people. (The 2012 edition takes place on June 20.) Clearing out cars also brought a surprising economic roar. Before, annual commercial rents in the area averaged about $800 per square foot. Last week, the eyewear emporium Oakley opened a new store, paying about $1,400 per square foot. Everyone in the Bloomberg administration is watching the countdown to the end of the mayor’s term, and Sadik-Khan’s Department of Transportation seems to be rushing to set her revolution in concrete so that her successor can’t merely paint it over. Times Square is only the most visible representative of a program that spans all five boroughs: Another 50 permanent plaza renovations are completed or in the works, from Madison Square to Myrtle Avenue in Brooklyn and Roberto Clemente Plaza in the Bronx. Uncharacteristically for a city agency, the DOT is resisting uniformity, trying to gear each project to local desires, so the Snøhetta design won’t be an archetype, but it will be a much-*scrutinized example. Tourists already make the crossroads of the world an obligatory visit, but Tim Tompkins, the president of the Times Square Alliance, wants to change both the composition of the crowds and the reasons they come. “Ten years from now, we want people to want to see what public art is happening here,” he says. There is of course the possibility that a rejuvenated Times Square will appeal to New Yorkers so intensely that it will once again become as unbearably crowded as it was before. That’s a risk the city is willing to take.
  4. Excess wind energy to be stored underground for future use Posted Oct 5th 2007 8:57PM by Darren Murph Filed under: Misc. Gadgets We've seen some fairly impressive uses of wind power, but a group in Iowa is looking to actually capture and preserve excess wind energy for use when demand peaks. At the Iowa Stored Energy Park, a number of local utilities is "building a system that will steer surplus electricity generated by a nearby wind farm to a big air compressor," which will be held deep below the ground for future use. The project is being backed by the Energy Department, but more than a hundred municipal utilities in surrounding states are shelling out $200 million to construct the 268-megawatt system. As it stands, Iowa's compressed air energy storage (CAES) installation will be the first of its kind when it's completed in 2011, but there's already work being done in Texas to build a similar unit.
  5. My parents can not stand Old Montreal, anymore and they have been living here since May. They are planning on moving back to the West Island in about 24 months. I told them about prefab homes. My mother was like, those do not work here seeing you need a basement. My father was like you do not need one. So my question is, do you need a basement or can you have something above ground and nothing under?
  6. Zig-zag lines being painted on purpose April 20, 2009 - 12:36pm Zig-zag lines being painted in Loudoun. (VDOT) Adam Tuss, wtop.com LOUDOUN -- Behind the wheel, you want the least amount of distraction possible. So why is a local transportation agency painting crooked lines on the road on purpose? The Virginia Department of Transportation says it's part of a safety campaign to get drivers to slow down in a high pedestrian and bicycle area. The 500 feet of zig-zagging lines are painted on the ground on Belmont Ridge Road, where it intersects with the Washington and Old Dominion trail in Loudoun County. "It is a low cost strategy to get motorists to slow down as they approach the bike trail and pedestrian path," says VDOT's Mike Salmon. "While at first motorists may be a little disoriented, the main point is to get them to pay attention and slow down through that area." There are plans to also paint the crooked lines on Sterling Boulevard where it intersects with the W&OD trail. VDOT says similar programs have been successful in the United Kingdom and Australia. The transportation agency will study the zig-zagging lines for a year and see if they actually reduce speeds. If the lines prove effective, you can expect to see more of them on the ground. (Copyright 2009 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)
  7. 16 stories planned for south east corner of de la Montagne and Maisonneuve. (still a fucking parking lot) Ground and mezzanine commercial 16 stories of apts 2 story penthouse
  8. Hotel overview LUXURY HAS NO LIMITS: A Modernist architectural jewel that rises up from its surroundings like a huge sentinel: the new Hotel ME Barcelona. The hotel is a new symbol for innovation and contemporary luxury in the city of Barcelona. ME Barcelona is the fourth hotel operated under the ME by Meliá brand, hotels with their very own special personality. Located in an impressive building measuring 120 metres in height, the ME Barcelona has a total of 34 floors, 29 above ground and another 5 below ground. The hotel has been designed by the French architect Dominique Perrault, famous worldwide for his avant-garde designs. Rooms 192 Supreme, 44 The Level, 16 Suites, 6 Grand Suites and 1 Sky Suite Interactive 32" plasma TV Wireless internet connection (WI-FI) free throuhout the hotel Audio system for Tango X2 I-pod Direct phone: in bathroom, writing desk and night-table Pillow top mattress 2 Types of gel and/or feather pillows Full-length mirror Shiny white resin or wooden mirror Bathrooms with panoramic views over Barcelona and the Mediterranean Sea Iron and ironing board available in the room Mini-bar (additional charge) Safe Individually controlled air-conditioning and heating Writing desk to measure with Fax-Modem connection for Internet or WIFI (free) Magnetic key card Bathroom with rain shower or bathtub, bathrobe, amenities (Aveda brand), hair-dryer, magnifying mirror Room completely soundproofed Connecting rooms (on request) i-Pod rental additional Services and facilities Special pet service 24-hours room service Customised service through our "everything-is-possible" team Laundry service Personalised call / wake-up service Room cleaning service twice a day I-pod rental (extra charge) Possibility of a baby-sitter Special service for pets Different musical atmospheres (live DJs) Local attractions Puerto Olímpico: 5 minutes by car Torre Agbar: 5 minutes' walk Shopping Center: 5 minutes' walk Sagrada Familia: 5 minutes by car Parque Gúell: 15 minutes by car Restaurants and bars Sky Food Bar & Lounge- relaxed, chic and modern venue. Fresh market cuisine DOSCIELOS Restaurant & Lounge - the Torres brothers' design cuisine, with a charismatic ambience and a panoramic balcony Angels & Kings Club - The New York Club Floor is an exclusive meeting point for people in the city Leisure Fitness Centre with natural light open 24 hours a day /7 days a week Outdoor stainless steel urban swimming pool Sun / chill out terrace on the 6th floor YHI SPA, including sauna, Jacuzzi, pressure showers, hammam and 4 treatment rooms Boutique Different musical ambiences (live DJ) Meeting rooms ME Barcelona has meeting rooms for 14 to 225 persons, all equipped with the latest technology State-of-the-art audiovisual equipment Business Center Catering Cell phone rental Computer rental Secretarial services Fax and photocopy service, printers Simultaneous interpretation services Meeting rooms: 5 Studio, 3 Sky Ballroom and 1 Evolution room http://www.solmelia.com/solNew/hoteles/jsp/C_Hotel_Description.jsp?codigoHotel=0823
  9. Je trouve ça assez épatant !! The project by the young architectural studio Urbanplunger has been recently awarded the third prize in the Night Club Hotel in Hong Kong international competition. The main idea is to create a suspended building structure to comply with the extremely compact planning in Hong Kong. The whole structure is elevated above the ground by leaning on the nearby buildings. The nature of the design allows for a green square underneath the building and increases the area of the existing recreation zone. [...] Source : www.arthitectural.com/
  10. I would have been scared shitless if I was on that flight. Qantas grounded all 6 of their A380s until they figure out what went wrong. I wonder if the other airlines that have the A380 will ground their fleets also. Story
  11. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kCv4UZHkAdo The car was wrong for driving up to the cycle box. But the cyclist was even more wrong for catching up to him and insulting him (called him a fucking prick). In the end, I think they both got what they deserve. Cyclist - A punch to the ground Driver - A nice shiny Audi to drive in :stirthepot:
  12. (Courtesy of The Huffington Post) Plus there is a little demonstration how the system works, if you go to the link
  13. I just noticed on Fedex.com, my package is being shipped to somewhere with no address. I called up Fedex the person there was like please call BrightPoint. I did call BrightPoint, which transferred me to HTC, which told me to call Fedex back. Fedex again tried to change the address but couldn't and told me to contact BrightPoint to send them a fax for a change of address. I called BrightPoint and they said they can't do that seeing the product in transit. Called up Fedex again to tell them what was going on. One person said I need a utility bill to pick up the package in Burlington, VT which doesn't make sense the package has no address. Another person said I can pick it up with my Passport even if I am Canadian and another person said it might just go back to BrightPoint thats in Indiana. Again I called up HTC which they tried to resolve the issue and another issue came up, they can't access my order. Plus I also called up CIBC Visa. They can't do anything about lost packages other than they can refund me for the cost of the package. All this in 2 hours. Funny thing is... I asked for ground delivery and they gave me ground delivery home service, even though I am delivering it to a business. Even if they had the address on the package, they would be trying to deliver it to a business on Saturday thats not open. Thing is I some how managed to find out what trailer my package is on So I guess can try and hijack the Fedex trailer
  14. Les tours prévues à Ground Zero pas achevées avant 2037 Agence France-Presse New York La reconstruction des tours prévues à Manhattan sur le site des attentats du 11 septembre 2001 risque de s'éterniser, et les bâtiments pourraient ne pas être totalement occupés avant près de 3O ans, révèle un rapport confidentiel cité jeudi par des médias locaux. Le quotidien populaire Daily News et la télévision NY1 citent un rapport confidentiel rédigé par l'agence de conseil en immobilier d'entreprise Cushman and Wakefield pour le compte de l'Autorité portuaire de New York et du New Jersey, propriétaire du site de Ground Zero où s'élevaient les tours jumelles du World Trade Center. Selon ce rapport, l'une des trois tours prévues, haute de 71 étages, ne pourra pas être entièrement occupée avant 2037, soit 36 ans après les attentats qui ont coûté la vie à quelque 3.000 personnes. Sa construction ne devrait en effet pas débuter avant 2026. La tour principale, qui atteindrait 541 mètres de haut et dont la construction a débuté, ne sera elle pas totalement accessible avant 2019, selon le rapport, qui indique qu'une troisième tour ne le sera quant à elle qu'à partir de 2026. Le rapport s'appuie pour parvenir à ses conclusions pessimistes sur les effets de la crise économique qui va affecter la demande de bureaux. Les ouvrages devant être construits sur le site de Ground Zero ont fait l'objet de nombreux retards, modifications et polémiques.