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  1. (Courtesy of The Montreal Gazette) I am just surprised no one tried this before. I know someone tried stealing one with their pick up truck a while back.
  2. Urbanites want an urban, Sainte-Catherine style, shopping experience, complete with walk along to consecutive and contiguous storefronts lining the street. Suburbanites want the freedom and accessibility of just driving to the mall with their car, parking and going in and finding everything in one place. Why don't we see shopping centres that truly combine both? Obviously, there are malls that kind of do, but i've yet to encounter a mall that fully implements both sides of the coin. So introducing.. my vision for a mall: -Not a single exterior surface parking spot. -The mall is meant to be located in a dense part of a grid patterned city. -There are wide sidewalks going all around, with stores lining the streets. -For those who want to park, there are roads leading through the mall, directly into a massive indoor parking garage, which is surrounded by the mall itself. Ta-da! Everybody's happy!
  3. Selon cet article paru dans le brossard eclair au mois de décembre dernier. A termes avec les phases a venir, il s'agirait du 2e plus grand centre commercial au canada après le West Edmonton Mall http://virtuel.brossardeclair.canoe.ca/doc/hebdo_brossard-eclair/bro_03122009_opt/2009120201/
  4. Not sure if this really counts as a renovation of sorts. Cineplex is planning on fixing up one or more cinemas with their UltraAVX. Plus the larger seats are supposedly in pleather. Whats funny that Montreal and Canada are finally making the cinema experience more upscale. In Mexico and Thailand certain cinemas have been like this for years. Especially the ones in Bangkok at the mall called: Siam Paragon (massive mall). The Paragon Cineplex in the mall has 15 screens. 1 of them only for members called: Enigma. One of them in Ontario or something is open to people only 19+ because they serve alcohol in one of the cinemas also they have food delivery to the seats.
  5. THE CANADIAN PRESS MONTREAL–Cadillac Fairview has announced a $52-million investment to "bring elegance and luxury to the shopping experience" at Carrefour Laval in suburban Montreal. The renovation, starting immediately and set for completion by the autumn of next year, includes relocating the shopping centre's food courts into a new 1,200-seat complex, adding more stores and ``harmonizing the common areas with the garden court." Cadillac Fairview, owned by the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, said Wednesday the design is "inspired by the urban trend seen in shopping centres of leading international cities." The upgrading of the 34-year-old mall, now with about 300 retailers in its 1.3 million leasable square feet, will include new flooring, ceilings, lighting and soft seating areas, with construction planned to minimize inconvenience for shoppers. Other properties in Cadillac Fairview's $16-billion portfolio include the Toronto-Dominion Centre and Eaton Centre in Toronto and the Pacific Centre in Vancouver
  6. The Shopping Mall Turns 60 (and Prepares to Retire) The Atlantic Cities EMILY BADGER JUL 13, 2012 The enclosed suburban shopping mall has become so synonymous with the American landscape that it’s hard to imagine the original idea for it ever springing from some particular person's imagination. Now the scheme seems obvious: of course Americans want to amble indoors in a million square feet of air-conditioned retail, of course we will need a food court because so much shopping can’t be done without meal breaks, and of course we will require 10,000 parking spaces ringing the whole thing to accommodate all our cars. The classic indoor mall, however, is widely credited with having an inventor. And when the Vienna-born architect Victor Gruen first outlined his vision for it in a 1952 article in the magazine Progressive Architecture, the plan was a shocker. Most Americans were still shopping downtown, and suburban "shopping centers," to the extent they existed, were most definitely not enclosed in indoor mega-destinations. At the mall’s peak popularity, in 1990, America opened 19 of them. But we haven’t cut the ribbon on a new one since 2006. Gruen’s idea transformed American consumption patterns and much of the environment around us. At age 60, however, the enclosed regional shopping mall also appears to be an idea that has run its course (OK, maybe not in China, but among Gruen’s original clientele). He opened the first prototype in Edina, Minnesota, in 1956, and the concept spread from there (this also means the earliest examples of the archetypal American mall are now of age for historic designation, if anyone wants to make that argument). At the mall’s peak popularity, in 1990, America opened 19 of them. But we haven’t cut the ribbon on a new one since 2006, for reasons that go beyond the recession. As we imagine ways to repurpose these aging monoliths and what the next generation of retail should look like, it’s worth recalling Gruen’s odd legacy. He hated suburbia. He thought his ideas would revitalize cities. He wanted to bring urban density to the suburbs. And he envisioned shopping malls as our best chance at containing sprawl. "He said great quotes on suburbia being 'soulless' and 'in search of a heart,'" says Jeff Hardwick, who wrote the Gruen biography Mall Maker. "He just goes on and on with these critiques. And they occur really early in his writing as well. So it’s not as if he ends up bemoaning suburbia later. He’s critiquing suburbia pretty much from the get-go, and of course the remedy he offers is the shopping mall." Gruen wanted to create better versions of the American downtown in the suburbs. He wanted these places to be civic centers as much as commercial ones, with day cares, libraries, post offices, community halls and public art. He wanted the shopping mall to be for suburbia what the public square was to old European cities. In fact, that mall in Edina, called Southdale, was supposed to be the centerpiece of a 500-acre master plan to include houses, apartments, office buildings, a medical center and schools. In his book, Hardwick unearths a great quote from the president of Dayton’s, the downtown Minneapolis department store that developed Southdale. He, like Gruen, believed that all of this could happen at no expense to the city. "We do not believe," he said, "we or anybody else will lose any business because of the suburban move." • • • • • Gruen’s creations did an amazing job of luring customers (and holding them captive in the shopping bliss now known as the Gruen Effect). The day Southdale opened, 75,000 happy shoppers streamed in. And it’s hard to imagine now where Gruen thought these people were coming from, if not in an exodus from downtown. He also built a series of satellite shopping centers around Detroit for the department store J.L. Hudson. When the first of them opened in 1954, Detroit was the fifth largest city in the country and the fastest growing in the East or Midwest. Of course Gruen’s shopping centers aren’t solely to blame for Detroit’s decline. But his idea helped set off a chain reaction that recurred in cities everywhere. Suburban malls drew consumers who found shopping and parking in the city too difficult. They contributed to a boom in development that enabled not just shopping dollars, but whole households to relocate to suburbia. Cities, eying this exodus, tore down buildings and tried unsuccessfully to recreate the ease of parking and the shopping experience people found in the suburbs. And this only further hastened their decline. "Gruen will often go on about how they’re going to push each other, 'what we’ve created in the suburbs can now be a model for downtown,'" Hardwick says. "But he doesn’t imagine that what we created in the suburbs is going to bankrupt downtown." In Edina, those plans for a whole town anchored around the mall were never executed, and perhaps Gruen was naïve to think the developers of shopping malls would also be interested in developing entire communities. At the time, Gruen believed that by locating all of a community’s shopping needs in an enclosed mall, with a nondescript exterior, we could do away with the "commercial blight" of scattered hot-dog stands and gas stations and neon storefronts that made America, in his eyes, so ugly. But the property value around Southdale quickly went up. And instead of developing the full 500-acre site, Dayton’s sold off chunks of it for what would become the kind of "anonymous mass housing" Gruen detested, and precisely more of the commercial sprawl he wanted to eradicate. Repeatedly, his plans did not turn out as he had imagined them, and later in life he bitterly lamented that Americans had debased his ideas. In one of the strangest legacies of his career, just as he was building these suburban shopping malls, Gruen was trying to revitalize urban downtowns with pedestrian-friendly master plans for cities like Fort Worth, Texas, and Kalamazoo, Michigan. He wanted to bring people back into the city even as he was trying to bring city-like amenities to the suburbs that lured so many people away. "They’re totally at odds," Hardwick says. "He never is able to explain that, or justify it. It’s a fundamental contradiction of his career." And then there was the problem in the suburbs of all that mall parking. How do you make a mall the civic heart of a community when it is, by definition, isolated in a sea of asphalt? "Even if we had realized Gruen’s ideas," says Georgia Tech professor Ellen Dunham-Jones, "if it’s just this self-contained pod surrounded by berms that you drive to, I don’t think the suburbs would actually look or function all that differently [today]." • • • • • By Dunham-Jones' count, today about a third of our existing malls are "dead" or dying. That’s not to say they’re mostly vacant. But they have dreadful sales per square foot. High-end dress stores have moved out, and tattoo parlors have replaced them – "things," Dunham-Jones says, "that would normally be considered way too déclassé for a mall." About a third of our malls are still thriving, and those are the biggest, newest ones. But America is no longer building many new highways, which means we’ve stopped creating prime new locations for mall development. Some of the earliest amenities of the enclosed mall – air-conditioning! – no longer impress us. And the demographics of suburbia have changed dramatically. Malls draw the largest share of their customers from teenagers, and the baby boomers who largely populate suburbia no longer have teenagers at home. For all these reasons, the suburban mall of Gruen’s plan appears to be victim of more than just the recession. Dunham-Jones, who has tracked this trend in her book Retrofitting Suburbia, estimates that more than 40 malls nationwide have been targeted for significant redevelopment. And she can count 29 that have already been repurposed, or that have construction underway. In 2010, Columbus, Ohio, tore down the dead mall in its downtown for a park. Voorhees, New Jersey, demolished half of its dead mall, built a new main street and relocated its city hall into the remaining building. In Denver, eight of the area’s 13 regional malls now have plans for redevelopment. One of them, in suburban Lakewood, was converted from a 100-acre super block into 22 walkable blocks with retail and residences. "It’s the downtown that Lakewood never had before," Dunham-Jones says. Ironically, this is what Gruen had been aiming for. "Except that now it’s open-air." Americans haven’t particularly outgrown the consumer impulse that Gruen detected. We still love to flock to dense agglomerations of Body Shops and Cinnabuns and Brookstones. But now those places look increasingly like open-air "lifestyle centers," with condos above or offices next door. Some of these places are just the old mall in a new Main Street disguise. But when you add residences, and cut Gruen’s mega-block into what actually looks like a downtown street grid, that begins to change things. "You’ve got to get a mix of uses, but the connectivity is probably even more important," Dunham-Jones says. "The uses will come and go over time, but if you can establish a walkable network of streets, that’s when you’re really going to establish a ripple effect in changing suburban patterns."
  7. Je trouve que l'utilisation actuelle de l'ancien Forum est assez lamentable et aucunement digne de sa renommée. Je sais que le coin est délabré et que tous attendent le développement du quadrilatère d'à coté soit celui ou se trouve le Séville mais je crois qu'un projet différent et d'envergure pourrait donner une plus-value à ce coin de la ville et à Montréal en général. Je suis un peu tanné des ''Mall'' intérieur au Centre-ville donc j'imagine agréablement un ''Musée du sport Québécois'' ou ''Musée du sport du Québec'' en plein dans l'emplacement du Forum au lieu de ce pénible ''mall'' Sur la partie arrière (De Maisonneuve) on pourrait ériger une tour de condo et sur la partie centrale et avant (Ste-Catherine) il pourrait y avoir ce ''musée du sport''. Rien n'empeche de garder la partie cinéma et un Rest-Bar de type sport cadrerait bien avec la formule. Je crois que le Québec ne manque pas d'événement, de lieu, de personnalité sportive ou d'histoire pour créer un certains intéret. Je sais que le Canadien ont crée leur propre petit musée à l'intérieur du centre Bell et cela est bien dommage car j'aurais bien aimé insérer le tout dans un ensemble d'envergure comprenant tout sur le Sport au Québec. Imaginons tous les thèmes que l'on pourrait abordé genre : L'histoire du Forum en lui meme Le club de Hockey Canadien Les nombreux joueurs du club Les non-québécois s'étant illustré au Québec (S. Crosby, P.Lafontaine etc..) Les Maroons Les Nordiques Les grands commentateurs sportifs (Danny Gallivan, René Lecavalier) La ligue junior majeur du Québec avec des joeurs d'ici mais n'ayant jamais joué pour le CH (Marcel Dionne, Mario Lemieux, Martin Brodeur, Michael Bossy etc...) Les Expos Les Royaux Les joueurs de baseball québécois (Éric Gagné) Le stade Delorimier Jackie Robinson Les Olympiques de 1976 Le Stade Olympique Le parc Jarry Les tournois de Tennis annuel (Coupe Rogers) Les Alouettes Le Concorde Le Stade Percival-Molson Les ligues canadienne de Football et universtaire du Québec Les athlètes québécois ayant remporté des médailles tant aux olympiques d'été que d'hiver (Étienne Desmarteau, Gaétan Boucher, Marc Gagnon etc...) La Formule 1 et le circuit Gilles-Villeneuve Gilles Villeneuve lui-meme La Motoneige et la participation de Joseph-Armand Bombardier Les Grands boxeurs québécois ou ayant combattu à Montréal ( Fernand Marcotte, les Hiltons, Yvon Durelle, Arturo Gatti, etc...) Les Grands combats à Montréal (Duran-Léonard) Le monde de la lutte avec Yvon Robert, Jean Ferré, Édouard Carpentier, Les Rougeau etc.... Les hommes forts comme Louis Cyr, Jos Montferrand, Le Grand Antonio Les différents sports d'hiver pratiqué au Québec (La peche, la peche sur la glace, la chasse, le ski etc...) Le Soccer L'impact Le Manic L'histoire des courses de chevaux Blue Bonnets Les clubs de golf du Grand Montréal Les grands parcs de Montréal et du Québec Le Marathon de Montréal Le tour de l'ile en vélo Les jeux du Québec Les émissions de sports à la télé et à la radio Et j'en passe surement plusieurs..... Qu'en pensez vous ?
  8. Un article, qui, je le sent, fera plaisir à Malek Should Downtown Crossing be reopened to traffic? Would car traffic bring back the crowds? Boston Globe, by Michael Levenson, Globe Staff | March 1, 2009 Downtown Crossing's problems have been well-documented: Crime has spawned fear, heightened by a stabbing and shooting in the midst of a bustling afternoon. Shops that once thrived next to Jordan Marsh and Filene's have shuttered, leaving empty storefronts cheek-by-jowl with pushcarts, discount jewelry stalls, and gaping construction sites. Sidewalks that teem with rowdy teenagers and office workers by day lie empty and forbidding at night. For years, city planners have been promising to restore the area to its former grandeur and make it a major urban destination. But as they have attempted solution after solution without success, they have never tried one idea: reopening the streets to traffic. Indeed, Downtown Crossing remains one of the last vestiges of a largely discredited idea, the Ameri can pedestrian mall, which municipal planners once believed would help cities compete with proliferating suburban malls. In the 1970s, at least 220 cities closed downtown thoroughfares, paved them with bricks or cobbles and waited for them to take hold as urban destinations. Since then, all but about two dozen have reopened the malls to traffic, as planners, developers, and municipal officials came to believe that the lack of cars had an effect opposite of what they had intended, driving away shoppers, stifling businesses, and making streets at night seem barren and forlorn. "Pedestrian malls never delivered the type of foot traffic and vitality they had expected," said Doug Loescher, director of The Main Street Center at The National Trust for Historic Preservation. "The sense of movement that a combination of transit modes provides - whether on foot or in car - really does make a difference," he said. "People feel safer, because there's some kind of movement through the district, other than a lone pedestrian at night. It just creates a sense of energy that makes people feel more comfortable and makes the district more appealing." Boston planners are against opening up Downtown Crossing, but as the district suffers the exodus of anchor businesses and a deepening malaise has settled in, some shop owners long for the energy, ease, and excitement they remember before Downtown Crossing closed to most traffic in 1978. "There was a constant flow of cars, stopping and going; it was very active, very busy, like a typical city street," said Steve Centamore, co-owner since 1965 of Bromfield Camera Co., on Bromfield Street, part of which is open only to commercial traffic. "There were people coming and going. It didn't seem to impede any pedestrians. It was a lot busier. People could just pull up and get what they needed. Now, it takes an act of Congress to even get through here." Pellegrino Bondanza, 72, who has sold vegetables in Downtown Crossing since he was a boy, said the pedestrian mall "didn't work out well." He hopes the city will reopen it to traffic. "Maybe it would bring some of the action back in town," he said. "I remember as a kid, I tried to squeeze in with a pushcart and, if I could locate at a corner, I could sell what I had in an hour and make a good living there. You had to be a little careful crossing the streets and everything, but don't forget the cars went slow when they were going up them streets there. There was no fast driving." Boston officials say they considered reopening Downtown Crossing to traffic and, in 2006, hired a team of consultants from London, Toronto, Berkeley, Calif., and Boston to study the idea. The consultants concluded that the mall should stay because the estimated 230,000 people who walk through Downtown Crossing every day should be enough to keep the place lively and economically vital. "What we heard from them pretty loudly was, 'Not just yet. Make it work. Give it your best effort,' " said Andrew Grace, senior planner and urban designer at the Boston Redevelopment Authority. "Lots of cities throughout the world make these districts work. The historic centers in most European cities function, and they thrive." Kristen Keefe, retail sector manager of the BRA, warned that bringing back traffic could squeeze out pedestrians who, she said, already contend with crowded sidewalks. "We just think these two things are in conflict," she said. Boston built its pedestrian mall after a study showed that six times more pedestrians than cars traveled down Washington Street - in front of what was then Filene's and Jordan Marsh - "so the impetus was to reassert the balance for pedestrians a little bit and improve the safety and amenities for pedestrians," said Jane Howard, who helped design the mall for the BRA and is now a planner in a private firm. It was a time when malls were being built across the country. Some are still considered successful - in Burlington, Vt., and Charlottesville, Va., for example. And New York City is experimenting with blocking traffic on Broadway through Times and Herald squares to create pedestrian-only zones. But those are the exceptions. Chicago, which turned downtown State Street into a pedestrian mall in 1979, reopened it to traffic in 1996, convinced that the mall had worsened the area's economic slump and left the street deserted and dangerous. Eugene, Ore., scrapped its mall in 1997, frustrated that "people went around downtown instead of through it," said Mayor Kitty Piercy. Tampa got rid of its mall in 2001 because it "didn't bring back any retail," as the city had hoped, said Christine M. Burdick president of Tampa Downtown Partnership. Buffalo, which has trolley service on its mall on Main Street, is currently reintroducing cars after finding that shoppers avoided stores that were cut off from traffic. "It takes a leap of faith to go somewhere nearby, pay to park, and then walk to someplace you haven't been yet," said Deborah Chernoff, Buffalo's planning director. "All the cities are dealing with the reality of how people actually behave." Downtown Crossing is not even a full pedestrian mall. Because Washington Street, its main thoroughfare, is open to commercial traffic, pedestrians mostly stick to the sidewalks, avoiding the cabs and police cruisers that often ply the route. After dark on a recent weeknight, just after 8:30 p.m., Downtown Crossing resembled a film noir scene, its deserted rain-slick streets glistening with the reflections of neon signs from a shuttered liquor store and a discount jewelry shop. The few pedestrians who hurried by were mostly teenagers and office workers descending into the subway or headed to the bustle on Tremont Street. They walked purposefully, scurrying past darkened store after darkened store with metal gates pulled shut. The only cars were a police cruiser that rumbled past, an idling garbage truck, and the occassional taxi. Yet some say the mall should stay. The developer Ronald M. Druker, who owns buildings on Washington Street, said he has "vivid memories of the conflict between cars and pedestrians," before the mall was built. "If you insinuated cars and trucks on a normal basis into that area, it would not enliven it," he said. "It would create the same problems that it created 30 years ago when we got rid of them." But others, particularly the shop owners struggling to survive the recession say they are eager to try just about anything that would bring back business. "Downtown Crossing definitely needs something - that's for sure," said Harry Gigian owner since 1970 of Harry Gigian Co. jewelers on Washington Street, which has seen a sharp dropoff in sales. "Nobody comes downtown anymore." De mon côté, j'adore les rues piétonnières européennes. Par contre, dans la plupart des cas, plusieurs des éléments qui font leur succès là bas ne sont pas réunis de ce côté ci de l'Altantique: - Bien qu'animées à certains moments de la journée ou de l'année, nos rues principales sont plutôt tranquilles la majorité du temps (les matins, les journées froides d'hiver, etc) - la présence d'itinérants, plus nombreux ici - il n'y a pas de "point focal", de destinations, ou point d'attraction majeure à chaque bout de nos rues qui ont le potentiel de devenir piétonnières. Par contre, il est très agréable de se promener dans la foule, l'été, sur une rue sans traffic automobile. Un compromis: avoir des rues piétonnières temporaires? par exemple, fermer Ste-Catherine les vendredis, samedis et dimanches de l'été, de midi à minuit? Bon, on ouvre les lignes! Les amateurs d'urbanisme, bonjour!
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