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  1. I've consulted the following document: Page. 82 in 1996/1997 Quebec recorded its worst interprovincial demographic losses. In 2013/2014, we're getting very close to historical records. Not good. Toronto is uncorking the champagne at our cost.
  2. January 15, 2009 By PATRICK McGEEHAN The retailing of recorded music will take another step toward extinction in early April, when the Virgin Megastore in Times Square closes to make room for Forever 21, a popular chain that sells moderately priced clothing. The closing, which was announced to the store’s 200 employees this week, will leave the Virgin store on Union Square as the last Manhattan outpost of a large music chain. The future of that store has not been decided, Simon Wright, the chief executive of Virgin Entertainment Group, said on Wednesday. Stores that sell prerecorded CDs and DVDs have been done in by the popularity of digitized music that can be downloaded from the Internet onto iPods and MP3 players. But Mr. Wright said that the Times Square store, which has about 60,000 square feet of selling space, is not simply a victim of technological progress. It has remained “very, very profitable” by shifting its merchandise toward apparel and electronics, including iPods, he said, adding that those two categories accounted for about 25 percent of sales during the holiday shopping season. “Stores that rely completely on recorded music have a difficult future,” he said, “but we’ve been changing our business quite dramatically.” But the chain’s owners, two big New York-based real estate development companies, saw greater potential in leasing the prime space to Forever 21. The Virgin chain, once part of Sir Richard Branson’s business empire, has been owned since 2007 by the Related Companies and Vornado Realty Trust. It comprised 11 stores when it was acquired, but now will be down to just five, two of them in California. Virgin closed other stores late last year. The Times Square space, on the east side of Broadway near 46th Street, will be closed for at least a year before it reopens as Forever 21’s largest location. It will be combined with some adjoining space to create a 90,000-square-foot store that will be triple the size of any of Forever 21’s three current stores in Manhattan, said Lawrence Meyer, a senior vice president of Forever 21. Forever 21 is a Los Angeles-based chain that sells trendy clothing for young women and men. It competes with other moderately priced retailers like H & M and Gap stores. “This is a bigger format,” Mr. Meyer said. “It’s going to be a fashion department store. It’s going to offer a deeper assortment of women’s apparel and men’s apparel.” Mr. Meyer said the recession had not diluted his company’s enthusiasm for making a big splash in an expensive area like Times Square. He declined to specify the rent Forever 21 will pay. “We have been doing O.K. in this environment because we have always given great value to our customers,” Mr. Meyer said. “Our stores are exciting and we want to create an exciting environment in Times Square.”
  3. Imaginez, même Le Globe and mail trouve des bon points sur Montréal c'est temps ci. Source: Globe and mail Montreal's murder rate reaches record low With 29 homicides recorded for 2008, police argue city one of the safest in North America MONTREAL -- In the 1970s, 80s and into the 90s, Montreal was saddled with scores of murders each year, a bloody battle that kept police busy and the crime tabloids happy. This year is closing out with a different kind of Montreal crime story: Homicides have hit record lows. Police report that, provided there are none today and tomorrow, 2008 is ending with 29 homicides, the smallest number recorded since the creation of the force in 1972. Since murder is considered a reliable barometer of social violence, police cautiously argue that Montreal is one of the safest major North American cities. Attempted murders are down, too. "Montreal is becoming like the suburbs," said Clément Rose, police commander of the major crimes division in Montreal. "People have this impression that Montreal is violent. That impression is false, really false, and these figures are real." Cdr. Rose said homicides have dropped so sharply, his 30-odd investigators have been devoting themselves to cold cases dating back as far as 1969. For the past four years, Montreal has recorded the lowest homicide rate among Canada's five biggest cities - the others are Toronto, Vancouver, Edmonton and Calgary. Toronto and Calgary, meanwhile, each recorded their highest homicide rate last year since the early 1990s. By way of comparison, Phoenix, a U.S. city of similar to size to Montreal, recorded more than 200 homicides last year. Philadelphia, with close to Montreal's population, had nearly 400. Several causes are cited for Montreal's drop. Police say efforts targeting street gangs have helped radically cut gang-related deaths; they fell to seven this year, half last year's total. Cdr. Rose said police have actively worked with leaders in immigrant and minority communities, who act as effective liaisons to resolve problems. "We've developed a better understanding of the street-gang phenomenon. It has let us develop informants and a better information network," he said. "In the long term, when you develop partnerships and friendships with these groups, it can't hurt." Homicides have also dropped since an anti-biker operation in 2001 put many organized-crime figures behind bars. Few homicides are committed by strangers, the kind of random crime that most frightens city dwellers. The overwhelmingly number of homicide victims in Montreal, as elsewhere, knew their attackers. Criminologists point to larger social shifts for the drop in homicides in Montreal. An aging population helps, something credited with bringing down the homicide rate across North America. "By the age of 40, you just don't have the guts to shoot people," Cdr. Rose said. "Everyone at 40 is more rational. Even crooks are more rational." But criminologists say that relative stability may help explain in part why homicide rates are consistently higher in Western Canada than in the east. The fast-growing cities of the West tend to be magnets for a younger, more mobile population. "An older society is a society in which people learn to live in peace with one another over time," said Maurice Cusson, a criminologist at the University of Montreal. Experts say it's noteworthy that a province with a dipping homicide rate - homicide in Quebec as a whole hit a 40-year low last year - is known for taking a distinctive approach toward dealing with offenders, favouring rehabilitation over harsh punishment. Quebeckers' attitude has placed it at odds with the tough law-and-order approach promoted by Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Conservatives. Quebec City, the province's second-largest urban centre, didn't record a single homicide in 2007 - a first for a large Canadian city since Statistics Canada began keeping figures in 1981. "Quebec is one province that has placed an emphasis on diverting people from the justice system and finding alternatives to prison," said Margaret Shaw, a criminologist at the International Centre for the Prevention of Crime in Montreal. Sometimes, even police acknowledge that luck can play a role in keeping down crime. Cdr. Rose says there's no way of knowing what a new year will bring; some say an economic downturn can have an impact on crime. "Right now, people love one another in Montreal," he said, half jokingly. "There is love in the city. All we can hope is that the same is true in 2009." Murder in major cities Criminologists say the Western Canadian cities have higher murder rates because of younger, more mobile populations. Homicides per 100,000 population 3.28 Edmonton 3.14 Calgary 2.41 Vancouver 2.01 Toronto 1.80 CANADA 1.58 Montreal