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Found 100 results

  1. http://www.montrealmirror.com/wp/2010/09/16/news/tacofying-city-hall/ YESSSSSSSS PLEEEEEEEEAAAAAASE!
  2. http://nymag.com/homedesign/urbanliving/2012/hudson-yards/ Atop the 1,300-foot office tower, soon to rise at 33rd Street and Tenth Avenue, by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates. Photo: Rendering by Visualhouse From 0 to 12 Million Square Feet In a few weeks, construction begins on New York’s largest development ever. Hudson Yards is handsome, ambitious, and potentially full of life. Should we care that it’s also a giant slab of private property? An exclusive preview. By Justin Davidson Published Oct 7, 2012 ShareThis On a Friday afternoon in September, a conclave of architects and real-estate executives gathers in a hotel conference room to look over plans for Manhattan’s largest remaining chunk of emptiness. Hudson Yards, the railroad depot that stretches from Tenth Avenue to the Hudson River, and from 30th to 33rd Street, barely registers on the mental map of most New Yorkers. Look down from a neighboring window, and you see only a pit full of trains hazed with their diesel fumes. The planners’ view, though, takes in sugarplum dreams of the city’s shiny next wing: an $800 million concrete roof over the yards, and above it the country’s largest and densest real-estate development: 12 million square feet of *offices, shops, movie theaters, gyms, hotel rooms, museum galleries, and open space, and 5,000 apartments, all packed into 26 acres. In the first, $6 billion phase—scheduled for completion by late 2017—the tallest tower will top the Empire State Building, and even the shortest will have a penthouse on the 75th floor. The people in the conference room can visualize that future in high-resolution detail. On the screen, digital couples stroll among trees pruned to cubical perfection. A chain of glowing towers garlands the skyline, and tiny figures stroll onto a deck hanging nearly a quarter-mile in the air. Architects discuss access points, sidewalk widths, ceiling heights, flower beds, and the qualities of crushed-stone pathways. You could almost forget that none of this exists yet—until one architect points to a lozenge-shaped skyscraper and casually, with a twist of his wrist, remarks that he’s thinking of swiveling it 90 degrees. The Related Companies, the main developer of the site, has called this meeting so that the designers of the various buildings can finally talk to each other, instead of just to the client. I’m getting the first look at the details at the same time some of the participants are. Suddenly, after years of desultory negotiations and leisurely design, the project has acquired urgency: Ground-breaking on the first tower will take place in the coming weeks. There’s a high-octane crew in the room: William Pedersen, co-founder of the high-rise titans Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates; David Childs, partner at the juggernaut Skidmore Owings and Merrill; Elizabeth Diller, front woman for the cerebral boutique Diller Scofidio + Renfro; *David Rockwell, a virtuoso of showbiz and restaurant design; Howard Elkus, from the high-end shopping-center specialists Elkus Manfredi; and landscape architect Thomas Woltz, the only member of the group new to New York real-estate politics. Their task is to compose a neighborhood from scratch. The success of Hudson Yards depends on the question: Can a private developer manufacture a complete and authentic high-rise neighborhood in a desolate part of New York? “This isn’t just a project; it’s an extension of the city,” says Stephen Ross, Related’s founder and chairman. New York has always grown in nibbles and crumbs, and only occasionally in such great whale-gulps of real estate. In the richest, most layered sections of the city, each generation’s new buildings spring up among clumps of older ones, so that freshness and tradition coexist. A project of this magnitude, concocted around a conference table, could easily turn out to be a catastrophe. The centrally planned district has its success stories—most famously, Rockefeller Center. Coordinated frenzies of building also produced Park Avenue, Battery Park City, and the current incarnation of Times Square. But this enterprise is even more ambitious than any of those, and more potentially transformative than the ongoing saga of the World Trade Center. New York has no precedent for such a dense and complex neighborhood, covering such a vast range of uses, built in one go. That makes this Ross’s baby. Hundreds of architects, engineers, consultants, planners, and construction workers will contribute to the finished product. Oxford Properties Group has partnered with Related, and the city dictated much of the basic arrangement. But in the end, how tightly the new superblocks are woven into the city fabric, how organic their feel, and how bright their allure will depend on the judgment and taste of a billionaire whose aesthetic ambitions match the site’s expanse, and who slips almost unconsciously from we to I. “We went out and selected great architects and then created a whole five-acre plaza,” Ross says. “People will have never seen such a world-class landscaping project. I can’t tell you what that plaza will look like, but what I visualize is a modern-day Trevi Fountain. It’s going to be classical and unique.” The best clue to what he has in mind isn’t in Rome, but at Columbus Circle. Ross lives and works in the Time Warner Center, which Related built, and if you imagine the complex blown out to five times its size, you begin to get a sense of what’s coming at Hudson Yards: crowds flowing from home to boutique, hotel to subway, office to spa, concert to restaurant—and all that activity threaded around and through a curving plaza equipped with fountains and a very tall monument, as yet unchosen. The Time Warner Center brought profitable liveliness to Columbus Circle, the once moribund, now vibrant hinge between midtown and the Upper West Side. But massive as it is, the Time Warner Center is dainty by comparison. Hudson Yards circa 2017 1. This office tower, by Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates, will become Coach headquarters. 2. Apartments by Diller Scofidio +Renfro, joined by David Rockwell: condos on top, rentals below. 3. The flagship office building, also by KPF: 1,300 feet high. 4. The curvy multiuse tower by David Childs contains a hotel, condominiums, and a big Equinox gym. 5. The shopping arcade (please don't call it the mall). 6.The Culture Shed: still unrevealed, but a great big space for traveling exhibits and other events. Photo: Rendering by Visualhouse Unnumbered buildings (the western half of the development) have yet to be designed. Photo: Map by Jason Lee The view from the High Line. Photo: Rendering by Visualhouse Photo: Rendering by Visualhouse Photo: Rendering by Visualhouse Photo: Rendering by Visualhouse Photo: Rendering by Visualhouse Start on the High Line, at West 30th Street near Tenth Avenue. At the moment, the landscaped section peters out here, but the old elevated railway continues, forking both east and west to form the southern border of Hudson Yards. Eventually, you’ll be able to continue your stroll beneath the canopy of an office tower housing the headquarters of the leather-goods company Coach. It’s a tricky spot, and the interaction of city street and raised park forces the architecture to perform some fancy steps. The building genuflects toward Tenth Avenue on muscular concrete legs. Coach’s unit reaches out toward the High Line, and the crown greets the skyline at a jaunty tilt. With all its connections and contortions, the tower, designed by Kohn Pedersen Fox, assembles its identity out of the complexities of city life. “My whole career has been about taking buildings that are inherently autonomous and getting them to become social gestures,” remarks Pedersen. Head up a couple of blocks from Coach’s future headquarters, and at West 33rd Street, another KPF tower tapers from vast hoped-for trading floors to a jagged peak 1,300 feet up. A state-of-the-art office building these days requires huge open layouts and thick bundles of elevator shafts, which tend to give it the natural grace of a hippopotamus thigh. But look up: Here, the design artfully disguises the two towers’ bulk by making them seem dramatically foreshortened, as if they were speeding toward the sky. One slopes toward the river, the other in the direction of midtown, parted like stalks of corn in a breeze. The cone of space between them draws sunlight to the ground and leaves a welcome break in the city’s increasingly crowded skyline. With any luck, you should be able to stand at the foot of these towers and feel sheltered but not squashed. It would have been far easier to wall the development off and let each tower stand in isolated splendor. Instead, planners have tried to soften the borders of their domain. That’s not just civic-mindedness; it’s good business. If Hudson Yards is going to be a truly urban place, it will have to lure people who neither work nor live there but who come because everyone else does. The development will have two major magnets, one for commerce, food, and entertainment, the other for that primal necessity of New York life: culture. Related is pinning a lot of financial optimism on a five-floor, two-block-long retail extravaganza that links the two KPF towers, rather like the Time Warner Center shops, only bigger, busier, sunnier, and more tightly knit to the city. “We don’t want this to feel like a mall,” insists its architect, Howard Elkus. Pedestrian passageways cut through the building, extending the streets indoors, and a succession of great glass walls turn window-shopping into a spectator sport. The liveliness engine is on the fourth floor, where a collection of informal but high-end food outlets curated by Danny Meyer looks out over the central plaza—“Eataly on steroids” is how one Related executive describes it. Above that are more expensive restaurants and a ten-screen multiplex. Stroll out the western side of the shopping center toward the central plaza, walk diagonally across to 30th Street, halfway between Tenth and Eleventh Avenues, and you come to the most intriguing and mysterious element of Hudson Yards: the Culture Shed. Having set aside a parcel of land for cultural use, the city put out a call for ideas. Elizabeth Diller and David Rockwell answered with an amalgam of architectural and institutional innovations: a flexible gallery complex to accommodate traveling exhibits and nomadic performing events. Together, they designed an enormous trusslike shell that could fit over the galleries or roll out like a shipyard gantry to enclose a vast performance space. The city refuses to discuss architectural details, how the still-theoretical organization will function, or who would pay to build and operate it. But it’s easy to imagine it being used for film premieres and high-definition broadcasts from the Metropolitan Opera or as a permanent home for Fashion Week, which now camps out in tents. The Culture Shed can give Hudson Yards the highbrow legitimacy and cutting-edge cool it needs to become an integral part of New York, and also create a cultural corridor running from the Whitney Museum at Gansevoort Street (now under construction), through Chelsea’s gallery district, and up to Lincoln Center. The project may be in the wishful-thinking stage—it could still get scaled back or dumbed down, or it could vanish altogether. But it does have one crucial booster: the Related Companies. “The Culture Shed is critically important,” says Jay Cross, the executive who is running the Hudson Yards project. “We’re going to be major supporters because we want and need to see it come to fruition.” Hudson Yards is getting much more from the city than just the Culture Shed. While planners keep working out ways to weld the complex to its environs, the West Side has already begun to embrace its coming addition. New rental towers have sprouted in the West Thirties and burly office buildings will soon rise along Ninth and Tenth Avenues. “There are communities around us—Hell’s Kitchen, Midtown South, West Chelsea, New Jersey to the west—that if we do a great job are just naturally going to flow in and populate that space,” says Cross. The site as a whole is a yawning pit, not so much a blank slate as an empty socket, surrounded by amenities and infrastructure just waiting to be plugged in. Hudson River Park runs along the western edge (set off by Twelfth Avenue), the High Line spills in from the south, and the future Hudson Park and Boulevard will swoop down from the north. The No. 7 subway-line extension is on the way to completion, the Javits Center is being overhauled, and maybe one day Moynihan Station will even get built. In all, $3 billion in taxpayer-funded improvements encircle the Related fiefdom—not including city tax abatements. “Where else have you ever seen this kind of public money for infrastructure to service a whole new development, in the heart of the city, with that much land and no obstacles?” Ross asks. His vocal enthusiasm for Mitt Romney and the Republican Party’s small-*government credo evidently hasn’t curbed his appreciation for public support. Although it’s the next mayor who will cut the first ribbon, in the long run Hudson Yards may well be the grandest and most dramatic piece of Michael Bloomberg’s legacy. It’s been on the city’s to-do list for almost a decade, ever since Bloomberg hoped to draw the 2012 Olympics to New York with promises of a West Side stadium. The fact that London won the games was a disappointment to him but a stroke of luck for the West Side, scuttling what would have been a disastrous stadium plan, while at the same time calling attention to the value of the real estate above the tracks. Eager for space to put up high-rises and now prompted by a big hole on Manhattan’s western flank, the city focused on a rezoning that is gradually pulling midtown’s center of gravity westward. There are two ways to conceive such a monster project. One is for a single architectural overlord to shape the whole shebang, as Raymond Hood did at Rockefeller Center. Steven Holl, whose offices overlook Hudson Yards and who has designed two similarly gargantuan complexes in China, submitted an entry that might have resulted in a work of thrilling coherence, with the same sensibility imbuing every detail, from door handles to office blocks. But the auteur development also risks yielding a place of oppressive uniformity, where each aesthetic miscalculation is multiplied many times over. Related chose the second option: recruiting an ensemble of brand-name designers. That approach emulates a sped-up version of New York’s gradual, lot-by-lot evolution; the danger is that it can produce a jumble. “Sometimes architectural vitality leads to messiness, or varying degrees of quality, and we’re trying to avoid that,” acknowledges Cross. “Every building is going to be best in class. That’s the common thread.” But bestness is not actually a unifying concept, and when the city held the competition to award the development rights in 2008, the Related entry failed to wow the city, the public, or the critics. “With a drop-dead list of consultants, contributors, collaborators, and anyone else who could be thrown into the mix … [the company] has covered all possible bases with something dreadful for everybody. This is not planning, it’s pandering,” wrote the critic Ada Louise Huxtable in The Wall Street Journal. None of that mattered: The project originally went to another developer, Tishman Speyer, and when that deal fell through, Related scooped it up. Architecture had nothing to do with it. Yet nearly five years later, with contracts signed and money starting to flow, that gold-plated crew of designers, working in separate studios, with different philosophies and, until recently, little consultation, has nevertheless produced a kind of haphazard harmony. What unites them is their taste for complexity and the deftness with which they maneuver conflicting programs into a single composition. Just past the Culture Shed, on the 30th Street side of the site at Eleventh Avenue, is the eastern half’s only purely residential tower, designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro, with David Rockwell. It’s an architectural griffin, grafting together rectilinear rental units on the lower floors with flower-petal condo layouts up high—about 680 apartments in all. The fantastically idiosyncratic bulges and dimples join in complicated ways that make the glass façade look quilted. Now walk north, back across the plaza and past a still-to-be-designed café pavilion, and you come to another tower with a textured exterior—vertical folds with stone on one side and glass on the other, as if a palazzo had merged with a modernist shaft. Actually, the building is even more hybridized than that. David Childs, the architect of the Time Warner Center and One World Trade Center, had to shoehorn a large Equinox gym plus offices, an orthopedic hospital, a sports emporium, a hotel, and a condominium into a curved base and a slender tube. “Hudson Yards is a city within a city. This tower is a city within a city—within a city,” he says. The most delicate, crucial, and treacherous design problem at Hudson Yards isn’t a building at all but the public space, and especially the five acres in the middle, an expanse about as large as Bryant Park. Done right, it could be the most vibrant gathering spot on the West Side, a New York version of Venice’s Piazza San Marco. Done wrong, it could be a windswept tundra populated only by office workers scuttling between the subway and their desks. It’s worrisome that Ross and his team postponed thinking about that void until so much of the architecture had been designed, but heartening that they are intensely focused on it now. Related has given the job to the talented Thomas Woltz, whose quietly refined restorations of gardens and college campuses may not quite have prepared him for the fierce pressure of shaping New York’s most ample new public space. It’s not just a place for people to mingle but for the relationships between the various buildings to express themselves across the connecting plaza. “One of the paintings I admire most is The School of Athens,” says KPF’s William Pedersen, referring to Raphael’s klatch of bearded philosophers chatting beneath noble vaults. “You have great historical and intellectual figures gathered together in dynamic groups of interchange, gesturing to each other. That’s the architectural assignment for each of us.” David Childs phrases a similar thought in a way that graciously defers to Woltz even while sending the message: Don’t screw this up. “We have an obligation to create great architecture, and all the buildings have to be related to the space in the center,” he says. “The void is the most important part.” Woltz has gotten it wrong once. In his first presentation, he placed a plush lawn at the center of the complex, and Ross nearly kicked him out of the room. What Ross wants is not a place to toss a Frisbee, but a town square alive with purpose and electricity. That’s a spectacular challenge; there are few great models for a European-style piazza within a ring of skyscrapers. For now, Woltz’s solution is a paved ellipse, outlined by a perimeter of trees cultivated with geometric severity—given “the Edward Scissorhands topiary treatment,” as one designer puts it. The idea is to create a verdant transition from the human scale to that of glass-and-steel giants. “In an open space next to 1,000-foot towers, our tallest tree is going to be like an ant next to a tall man’s shoe,” Woltz says. But the most maddening paradox of Woltz’s assignment is that he must tailor an open space to the motley public—in ways that will please a potentate. Like some fairy-tale monarch, Ross has dispatched his counselors to find an artist capable of supplying his modern Trevi Fountain. What he wants is something monumental enough to focus the entire project, a piece that’s not just watery and impressive but so instantly iconic that people will meet by it, shoot photos of it, notice it from three blocks away, and recognize it from the cover of guidebooks. You get the feeling that Ross is hedging his bets: If Woltz can’t deliver a world-class plaza with his trees and pavers, maybe a Jeff Koons or an Anish Kapoor can force it into life with a big honking hunk of sculpture. A giant puppy can’t solve an urban design problem, though. It’s nice that a hardheaded mogul like Ross places so much faith in the civic power of art, but he may be asking it to do too much. The plaza is the node where the site’s conflicting forces reveal themselves: the tension between public and private, between city and campus, between democratic space and commercial real estate. Occupy Wall Street’s takeover of Zuccotti Park last year pointed up the oxymoron inherent in the concept of privately owned public space: You can do anything you like there, as long as the owners deem it okay. Childs hopes that his client’s insistence on premium-brand design won’t make Hudson Yards just the province of privilege. “We want this project to be laced through with public streets, so that everyone has ownership of it, whether you’re arriving in your $100,000 limo or pushing a shopping cart full of your belongings.” The plans include drop-off lanes, so the limos are taken care of. But if the shopping-cart pushers, buskers, protesters, skateboarders, and bongo players start feeling too welcome at Hudson Yards, Related’s security guards will have a ready-made *argument to get them to disperse: This is private property.
  3. State Street rétrécit à Montréal Publié le 10 avril 2013 à 08h29 | Mis à jour à 08h29 Ajouter à Ma Presse Taille du texte Imprimer Envoyer À lire aussi Le prix des maisons en légère hausse au Canada Où s'en va l'immobilier? Petites capitalisations canadiennes attrayantes Le ralentissement de l'immobilier se confirme au pays Petite hausse pour l'indice des prix des logements neufs Sur le même thème Bloomberg Du même auteur State Street rétrécit à Montréal Gare aux risques économiques! 21 millions pour les patrons de la Nationale Finances: la réputation de Montréal grimpe encore Couche-Tard a encore faim Les raisons exactes derrière la décision de State... (Photo Philippe Orfali, collaboration spéciale) Agrandir Photo Philippe Orfali, collaboration spéciale Les raisons exactes derrière la décision de State Street de déplacer à son siège social de Boston (notre photo) une cinquantaine d'emplois demeurent nébuleuses. Martin Vallières Martin Vallières La Presse Déception dans les milieux financiers de Montréal: le groupe américain State Street déplacera à son siège social de Boston une cinquantaine d'emplois liés aux marchés boursiers qu'il avait depuis des années dans la métropole québécoise. Cette suppression de postes affectera surtout la division de gestion d'actifs «State Street Global Advisors» du groupe bostonien, selon l'information obtenue par La Presse Affaires. En tout, State Street regroupe quelque 130 employés à ses bureaux montréalais, qui gèrent aussi des services de garde de valeurs, de gestion de devises et de suivi de la clientèle d'investisseurs institutionnels. Le transfert de postes a été annoncé hier aux employés touchés à Montréal. Il doit s'échelonner sur plusieurs semaines, selon ce que nous avons appris. Les raisons exactes derrière la décision de State Street demeurent nébuleuses. Mais comme ses activités de services à sa clientèle de gros investisseurs à Montréal ne sont pas touchées, on présume dans le milieu financier que State Street veut regrouper ses activités transactionnelles à Boston, afin d'en réduire les coûts de fonctionnement. Les demandes d'information auprès de la direction de State Street à Montréal et à Boston sont restées sans réponse en fin de journée hier. Au regroupement Finance Montréal, aussi, on ignorait tout des motifs réels de State Street. Déception «Ils étaient très discrets parmi nos interlocuteurs, considérant la taille de leur entreprise. Mais en attendant d'en savoir davantage, cette réduction d'emplois à Montréal est décevante de notre point de vue», a commenté Jean Houde, PDG de Finance Montréal. De son siège social à Boston, le groupe dirige des activités financières qui ont généré 9,6 milliards de revenus et 2,0 milliards de bénéfice net l'an dernier. Il vient de passer le seuil des 2000 milliards en actifs sous gestion. Au Canada, State Street a ses bureaux principaux à Toronto, avec quelques centaines d'employés. Elle a même son nom apposé sur une tour à bureaux du quartier financier de Bay Street - why not Montreal? Ses autres bureaux canadiens à Vancouver et à Montréal ont surtout des responsabilités de suivi de leur clientèle régionale. ------------------ STATE STREET EN BREF Siège social: Boston Revenus en 2012: 9,6 milliards US (- 0,7%) Bénéfice net en 2012: 2,0 milliards US (+ 7,0%) Actifs sous gestion: 2089 milliards US (+ 13,0%) Valeur boursière: 26 milliards US Sources: State Street, Bloomberg
  4. Un petit quiz proposé par The Guardian ... j'en ai eu 10/13 http://www.theguardian.com/cities/2015/sep/30/identify-world-cities-street-plans-quiz
  5. Le promoteur MonDev prépare la construction d'un nouveau projet de condo situé sur la rue Jean Talon entre la rue Léonard de Vinci et la 18e avenue. Le projet compte : - 3 étages + un niveau terrasse. - 75 appartements à condo - 1 espace commercial Site du projet : http://www.mondev.ca/condo-montreal-spark-75-nouveau-condos-a-vendre-villeray-saint-michel-et-parc-extension.html?ProjetID=128 Street view du site : https://maps.google.ca/maps?hl=fr&ll=45.563668,-73.594019&spn=0.001065,0.002642&t=h&z=19&layer=c&cbll=45.563668,-73.594019&panoid=ate7DBWeDE1f7rtulrmY1Q&cbp=12,115.04,,0,1.64 Le terrain est dans cet état à cause d'une probable décontamination du site, car il y avait auparavant une station services et un garage.
  6. Shinan: Charles Khabouth extending club empire to Montreal Shinan Govani | Dec 14, 2012 2:04 PM ET More from Shinan Govani | @shinangovani Peter J. Thompson / National Post Peter J. Thompson / National Post Charles Khabouth is extending his mighty entertainment empire to Montreal. Twitter Google+ LinkedIn Email Comments More Official: the sultan of Toronto nightlife is extending his tentacles once more — to Montreal. Charles Khabouth is at it again, it’s true, and this time the plan involves bringing a little bit of Bloor Street to La Belle Province. La Société Montreal – a fraternal twin sis of that La Société, in the 416 – is all set to open within the Lowes Hotel Vogue. March 2013, I”m told, is showtime. “This partnership is the first of its kind,” Khabouth confirms, underlining the news that his INK Entertainment and the Lowes Hotel & Resorts group are embarking on a “strategic partnership in the hotel hospitality industry in Canada.” No rest for the weary — or for Charles. Born in Morocco, but honed in Canada, his stockpile already includes time-tested clubs such as This is London and Kool Haus (and many more), new-old-again boites like the newly-opened Uniun, a touch-down in Niagara Falls called Dragonfly, and urbane collaborations like Weslodge, a designer-saloon on Toronto’s King Street, and the even newer Spanish-centric Patria, next door. His La Société — when it opened during the summer of 2011, right in the middle of the so-called “Mink Mile,” next to Cartier and in front of Gucci — represented a kind of new-school resurgence for Bloor Street, and also a personal mile-stone for its impresario. Moola had obviously been spent on the place, with some even going as far as to compare the high-style brasserie to La Coupole, that catwalk of a place in Paris. Others, like myself, saw a genetic strain owing to Keith McNally, in New York City, and to his famously nostalgic places such as Balthazar. At the time, Khabouth said that La Société actually owed its inspiration to the bistros and brasseries of his native Beirut, and was modelled after one particular place in Paris: La Fontaine de Mars, in the 7eme. Predictably, the place was flooded by curiosity-seekers from the day it was opened, attracting boldface that ranged from … well … Deepak Chopra to Liza Minelli! Spotted at its curving booths, and beyond, has been a bounty of inevitable Toronto notables: from uber-barrister Eddie Greenspan to hotel mogul Isadore Sharpe to society diva Melanie Munk. And though things have surely cooled since its most nascent days – the hot spot narrative turned, predictably, to newer arrivals in town, such as Momofuku and Soho House – it continues to enjoy a steady clientele. And it’s still not surprising to see a holy-moly icon in there – i.e. Gary Oldman! The actor was spotted just earlier this week, mid-day, at La Société, his attention turned to an open-faced omelette. Peter J. Thompson/National Post Peter J. Thompson/National PostLa Societe co-owner Danny Soberano. Can Khabouth pull off his magic in Montreal? One thing is for certain: this is a bold and interesting move in terms, hospitality-wise. For a variety of reasons — the sheer size of the country, lack of imagination — there isn’t a lot of resto cross-pollination between cites in Canada. When there is brand-appropriation, it tends to happens on the north-south axis — spots such as the aforementioned Momofuku, or Cafe Boulud, being transplanted here. Another thing we do know: Khabouth will recreate the magic of the jaw-dropping stain-glass ceiling that is a hallmark of the place in the original restaurant, in Toronto. The newLa Société, in the Hotel Vogue, will be draped with the same.
  7. http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2015/11/19/travel/what-to-do-in-36-hours-in-montreal.html 36 Hours in Montreal Whether you want to embrace the season on rinks, trails or runs, or dodge the cold and head to the spa, this vibrant city has it all. Winter is right around the corner, and when the going gets cold — like zero-degrees-Fahrenheit cold — Montrealers get resourceful. Some dodge Canadian winter amid the heated vapors of the city’s Nordic spas or the warming drinks of cozy bars. Others embrace it by skiing and skating in public parks, cheering the hometown Canadiens hockey team and ingesting hearty meals in the new wave of forestlike and lodge-inspired restaurants. And still others flamboyantly celebrate the frozen season, reveling at Igloofest (an outdoor electronic-music extravaganza), Montréal en Lumière (a food and entertainment festival) and sugar shacks (forest canteens that sprout during maple-syrup season) amid near-Arctic conditions. Whether you are more interested in creative cocooning or winter worship, Quebec’s biggest city offers manifold amusements for the province’s defining season. Outerwear recommended. Friday 1. *Ready, Set, Snow, 5 p.m. Skate, ski or sled into winter at Parc du Mont-Royal. (The mountain it partly occupies is said to have provided Montreal’s name.) The sprawling hilltop park is the center of activities involving snow and ice. From December to March, Le Pavillon du Lac aux Castors rents skates (9 Canadian dollars, or $7 at 1.30 Canadian to the U.S. dollar, for two hours), cross-country skis (12 dollars and up for one hour) and inner tubes (5 to 9 dollars, depending on age, for the day) for the nearby outdoor rinks, trails and runs, some affording lovely city views. 2. *Enchanted Forest, 8 p.m. Reheat in the stylish confines of the new SouBois restaurant and nightclub. The underground space suggests a magical woodlands where avant-garde sculptural trees hover over a dining room of plank floors, shingled walls, raw-wood tables and Scandinavian-style chairs. The chef, Guillaume Daly, conjures magic too, metamorphosing rustic Canadian ingredients into innovative treats. The poutine is a gorgeously gloppy stack of greasy thick fries — piled like logs in a fire, and drenched with velvety warm Cheddar sauce, pungent mushrooms and an unctuous block of foie gras — while veal steak gets a funky crunch from spiced popcorn. For dessert, revisit campfire memories courtesy of deconstructed s’mores, replete with cubed marshmallows, jagged chocolate fragments and crumbled cookies. A three-course dinner for two costs about 110 dollars. Make reservations. 3. Canadian Libations, 10 p.m. The staggering whisky menu at the Burgundy Lion, a lively British-style pub with dark wood surfaces and frosted glass, offers further means to warm up. The more exotic specimens hail from Taiwan, Sweden, France and Switzerland, while Canadian representatives include Wiser’s Red Letter (12 dollars), a mellow elixir with a hint of toasted nut. Down the street, candlelit La Drinkerie Ste. Cunégonde offers several Canadian beers as chasers, including Les Trois Lettres IPA (5.50 dollars), a fragrant, floral brew with hints of clove and nutmeg. Saturday 4. Earth and Sky, 9 a.m. Still chilly? Eternal summer awaits inside the humid tropical forest of the Biodôme, a glass-roofed nature preserve containing multiple ecosystems. You might glimpse iguanas, frogs, bats, snakes, sloths and other exotic creatures as you wend your way among the dense vegetation, streams and stone caverns. The trail then takes you into forest, mountains, Atlantic gulf and subarctic islands (complete with penguins). Next door, the two-year-old Rio Tinto Alcan Planetarium is a postmodern silvery structure shaped like two telescopes pointed at the sky. Within, two domed theaters-in-the-round take you on immersive sensory journeys across the cosmos with shows like “Dark Universe,” about dark matter and energy, and “Aurorae,” about the Northern Lights. Admission to both facilities costs 33.50 dollars. Check the website (espacepourlavie.ca) for the film schedule. 5. *Shack Snack, Noon If you can’t get to a real sugar shack, the “Sugar Shack” sampler (11.95 dollars) at Eggspectation — a vast all-day breakfast and brunch hall on fashionable Rue Laurier Ouest — is a copious, calorie-rich substitute. Typical sugar shack fare, the dish heaps on fluffy scrambled eggs, sliced ham, baked beans, fried potato slices and unfilled sweet crepes along with ample maple syrup. The restaurant’s formidable menu also encompasses everything from lobster macaroni and cheese (18.95 dollars) to around 10 types of eggs Benedict. 6. **Buy Canadian, 1:30 p.m. You’ve probably grown a size since that meal. Conveniently, the boutiques along Rue Laurier Ouest brim with Canadian-made garments to accommodate your expanded frame. Chic insulation abounds at La Canadienne, where ladies can score weather-treated knee-high suede boots (450 dollars), a long quilted silvery jacket with a fur-lined hood (1,125 dollars) and much besides. Cool, straightforward, solid-colored garments to wear underneath can be found in the eponymous boutique of the veteran Montreal designer François Beauregard, including stretchy jersey T-shirts in autumnal colors (50 dollars) and dark blue 1940s-style trench coat dresses (189 dollars). Strut the ensemble to Juliette & Chocolat, a cafe serving some 20 types of hot chocolate, complete with tasting notes (6.75 to 8.50 dollars, generally). 7. **Chromatherapy, 3 p.m. With its colorful collections of art and antiquities, the Musée des Beaux Arts de Montreal illuminates even the grayest Montreal days, notably in the ground-floor galleries of 19th- and 20th-century painting. Mediterranean sun, sea and palms radiate from Matisse’s “Seated Woman, Back Turned to the Open Window,” a 1922 canvas set in the French Riviera city of Nice. Almost adjacent, the disassembled, fractured and explicitly naked couple in Picasso’s erotic “Embrace” (1971) generates a different kind of heat. A kaleidoscopic array of iconic furniture and housewares fills the multilevel design pavilion, from burgundy Arne Jacobsen “Egg” chairs to candy-colored Ettore Sottsass bookshelves to space-age 1970s red televisions from the Victor Company of Japan. A sleek yellow Ski-Doo snowmobile from 1961 begs to be borrowed for a joy ride. Admission: 20 and 12 dollars, depending on exhibition. 8. **North Stars, 7 p.m. Canadian pride suffuses the friendly, lively new Manitoba restaurant. Animal furs and raw logs decorate the industrial concrete room, and indigenous ingredients from the Great White North fill the chalkboard menus. Among starters, the plump baseball-size dumpling spills out shredded, succulent pork tongue and flank into a tangy broth floating with crunchy daikon for a Canadian-Chinese mash-up. For mains, thick deer steak gets a zesty drench of red wine sauce infused with Labrador tea and crunch from root vegetables like candied carrot and smoked onion. Maple syrup-smoked bone marrow is topped with berries, onion and Japanese mushrooms for a sublime hunter-gatherer hybrid. A three-course meal for two is about 100 dollars. 9. *Liquor Laboratory, 10 p.m. Tucked across from Parc La Fontaine (a favorite ice-skating spot), Lab is a dimly lighted speakeasy of brick and dark wood where the mad mixologist Fabien Maillard and fellow “labtenders” ceaselessly research new cures for your sobriety. Who else could invent the Jerky Lab Jack (14 dollars), a concoction of Jack Daniels whisky, Curaçao, cane sugar and bitters flavored with barbecue sauce? It’s a gulp of the American south, flamed with a blowtorch and delivered under a miniature clothesline hung with beef jerky. Continuing toward the Equator, Caribbean flavors infuse the dozens of specialty rums (from Cuba, Jamaica, Trinidad, Grenada and beyond) and cocktails like Bébé Dragon, a blast of Barbados rum, house-made ginger syrup, lemon juice, lemon-lime soda, mango and basil (14 dollars). Reserve spots online. Sunday 10. Vintage Voyage, 10 a.m. Finally: a place stocking those stag heads, Lego figurines, cowboy paintings, flapper hats, snow shoes, lace doilies and neon signs you’ve had trouble finding. Near the last stop of the Metro’s blue line, Marché aux Puces Saint Michel is a vintage shopper’s Shangri-La. The sprawling, dusty, musty two-level labyrinth-like flea market holds hundreds of stalls selling the contents of seemingly every Canadian attic and basement. Kiosk 216 has an impeccable collection of vinyl LPs from the “Valley of the Dolls” soundtrack to Serge Gainsbourg’s “Grandes Chansons de Gainsbourg,” while Artiques (kiosk 219; 514-898-2536) sells well-maintained pinball machines, jukeboxes, pipe organs and radios. For gents needing winterwear, La Garette d’Anna (kiosk 358; facebook.com/LaGaretteDAnna) sports an extensive collection of bomber jackets, capes, police caps and pith helmets. Haggle. 11. Ship Shape, 1 p.m. Norway, Sweden and Finland have mastered the art of stylishly dealing with cold weather, and Montreal has paid homage to these experts with numerous Nordic-themed spas around town. The most innovative is Bota Bota, a former ferryboat that was remade in sleek contemporary style and reopened as a wellness facility in the winter of 2010. Spread over five decks, the indoor-outdoor spa offers many massages and facial treatments, but the core experience is the “water circuit” (35 to 70 dollars depending on day and time). Sweat out the weekend’s toxins in a Finnish sauna or hammam; plunge into one of the cold pools; and finally chill out in one of the relaxation areas or the restaurant. The 678 portholes and numerous wall-size glass panels afford superb views of the city skyline, though the best vantage point is the external heated whirlpool bath. There might be no warmer spot amid wintry Montreal. Lodging With 131 suites, downtown’s Hotel Le Crystal (1100, rue de la Montagne, 514-861-5550) offers anti-winter pampering perks like an indoor saltwater pool and an outdoor year-round rooftop hot tub, both with city views. Some executive suites and penthouses have operational fireplaces. Double rooms from 199 Canadian dollars. Situated in the hip Plateau neighborhood, the 21-room Auberge de la Fontaine (1301, rue Rachel Est, 514-597-0166) lies across the street from leafy Parc La Fontaine — home to an outdoor skating rink — and down the street from Lab cocktail bar. Certain rooms have whirlpool baths. Doubles from 122 Canadian dollars.
  8. Bay Street still has Canada’s most expensive office space http://renx.ca/bay-street-still-canadas-expensive-office-space/ Bay Street in Toronto has the most expensive office space in Canada, and no other city comes close to matching the $68.52 per square foot average rent that’s being asked for in the heart of the country’s financial district. JLL Canada recently released its “Most Expensive Streets for Office Space” report, which ranks Canadian cities by their highest asking rents. It shows many companies are still willing to pay a premium for the most expensive spaces, and competition is growing to get into prominent financial, retail and government hubs. “The most significant trend that we are seeing across major markets is that there are a large number of new developments underway,” said JLL Canada president Brett Miller. “Although we have only seen minor changes to the top market rents thus far in 2014, we anticipate that as the new inventory comes to market, overall rents will decrease in the older class-A stock whilst headline rents in new developments may raise the top line rents.” Here are the most expensive streets in nine major Canadian cities 1. Bay Street, Toronto, $68.52 per square foot Bay Street held strong in first place for the fourth year running. It features the headquarters of major Canadian banks and is home to many investment banks, accounting and law firms. Brookfield Place, at 161 Bay St., continues to command the highest office rents of any building in Canada at $76.54 per square foot. The average market rent in Toronto is $34.82 per square foot. (Bay St. looking north from Front St. shown in the image,) 2. 8th Avenue SW, Calgary, $59.06 per square foot 8th Avenue SW again has the highest average gross office rents in Calgary. Large vacancies and availabilities along this corridor typically account for significant activity and command market-leading rates. Large oil and gas companies have historically clustered around the central business district in this area. The top rent on the street is $64.40 per square foot and the average market rent in Calgary is $46 per square foot. 3. Burrard Street, Vancouver, $58.87 per square foot Burrard Street has dropped to third place despite a slight increase in average asking rent from $58.47 in 2013. Approximately 18.3 per cent of downtown class-A office supply is located on Burrard Street between West Georgia Street and Canada Place. The vacancy rate in these six buildings sits at 1.6 per cent, which justifies this location commanding some of the highest rental rates in the city despite the impending influx of new supply that’s putting downward pressure on rents throughout the central business district. The top rent on the street is $66.06 per square foot and the average market rent in Vancouver is $38.81 per square foot. 4. Albert Street, Ottawa, $52.10 per square foot Albert Street remained in fourth position with average rents decreasing slightly from $53.40 per square foot. Albert Street is mainly home to government-related office towers, including numerous foreign embassies, and a few of the largest Canadian business law firms. There seems to be a wait-and-see approach in anticipation of the 2015 federal election regarding the government’s intentions to lease or return more space to the market. The top rent on the street is $53.54 per square foot and the average market rent in Ottawa is $30.90 per square foot. 5. 101st Street NW, Edmonton, $46.71 per square foot The average asking rent dropped from $48.19 per square foot, but 101st Street NW is expected to remain the most expensive in Edmonton with the recent commitment to build the arena district, a large-scale, mixed-use project incorporating the city’s new National Hockey League arena. This is expected to revitalize some of the most important corners on the street. The top rent on the street is $54.15 per square foot and the average market rent in Edmonton is $28.30 per square foot. 6. René-Lévesque W, Montreal, $44.28 per square foot The average gross rent on the street hasn’t changed significantly year over year, but the total value of tenant inducement packages has nearly doubled. The most expensive building on the street (1250 René-Lévesque W) rents for $52.76 per square foot but has seen some downward pressure of two to four dollars on its net rent due to 170,000 square feet of vacant space left behind by Heenan Blaikie. The average market rent in Montreal is $30.38 per square foot. 7. Upper Water Street, Halifax, $36.42 per square foot Upper Water Street has maintained seventh place despite its average asking rent dropping from $36.65 per square foot last year. New construction coming on stream is expected to put downward pressure on rents in existing office buildings. The top rent on the street is $36.62 per square foot and the average market rent in Halifax is $27.44 per square foot. 8. Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, $35.67 per square foot Portage Avenue held strong in eighth place, with its average rent increasing from $35.17 per square foot. The class-A market remains tight and is expected to remain so through 2015. The top rent on the street is $37.32 per square foot and the average market rent in Winnipeg is $23.62 per square foot. 9. Laurier Boulevard, Québec City, $27.50 per square foot Laurier Boulevard held its ninth-place position despite the average rent dropping from $28.14 per square foot. There’s been no notable increase in the average gross rent and the vacancy rate on the street remains low at 5.2 per cent compared to the rest of the market’s 7.8 per cent. The top rent on the street is $28.98 per square foot and the average market rent in Québec City is $21.89 per square foot. JLL manages more than 50 million square feet of facilities across Canada and offers tenant and landlord representation, project and development services, investment sales, advisory and appraisal services, debt capital markets and integrated facilities management services to owners and tenants.
  9. Proposed: Current: NOTE: This is a Karsten Rumpf project announced back in JUNE 2011 with little to no indication that any work started. Since he is currently active with the Bishop Court condo conversion, I figured this project would be worth posting here. But this thread probably belongs to "projects oublie" for now.
  10. http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4154160,00.html There is also video clips if you click the link, don't worry the video clips are in english and not hebrew.
  11. KPF wins planning approval for Gravesend riverside renewal project Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates (London) have won planning approval for a new riverfront development to the north-west of Gravesend Town Centre that combines affordable housing, public amenity space and the restoration of Thames riverside heritage. Clifton Wharf will occupy two brownfield sites separated by West Street. The unique location includes a disused iron railway pier extending out into the Thames. KPF’s proposed re-development advances both the Kent and Medway Structure Plan and the Gravesham Local Plan by redressing the legacy of decline to the environment and infrastructure of this area. It will revitalise Gravesend town centre by bringing life into the neighbourhood though the creation of jobs and much needed accommodation. The scheme comprises 145 residential apartments, a retail unit and provisional river-related uses. The design overcomes the challenge of a split location by means of five sliced ellipsoidal buildings. Cutaway roofs allow for terraces at the top levels; punctuations in the wooden façades provide balconies for lower flats. The buildings, pebble-like in form, sit on a landscaped podium that stretches out in line with the pier. Every building in the cluster uses cutting edge morphology and careful positioning to maximise variety, giving the appearance of differing volumes and heights and taking advantage of the site’s access to unique views and natural light. KPF’s scheme restores the old iron pier and introduces steps and ramps to allow members of the public to get close to the original engineering. The shape and orientation of the pier is echoed and extended inland by the podium which unifies the site and reinforces the connection with the river. The new public walkway, which extends across the road to the pier, provides pedestrian access to the terraces and viewpoints on the water. The relocation of the old river defence wall creates space for proper pavements on West Street and an improved flood protection barrier further to the north. http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/index.php?fuseaction=wanappln.projectview&upload_id=11355
  12. Tensions build over Roxboro high-rise project by Raffy Boudjikanian Article online since November 24th 2009, 13:00 Holly Arsenault shows the property line dividing her land from that of a developer whose potential project leaves many on Fifth Avenue North in Roxboro unhappy. Chronicle, Raffy Boudjikanian. Tensions build over Roxboro high-rise project Even as some residents of Fifth Avenue North in Roxboro, a dead-end street lined with single-unit bungalows, are concerned over the possible development of a multiple-storey condo at the end of their street, Pierrefonds officials at a lively public meeting last Wednesday night were at pains to explain nothing could move ahead yet. "Before the project can be accepted or acceptable, the developer must present plans that conform to our legislation. For now, that isn't the case yet," said Pierre Rochon, urban planning and business services department director, in answer to citizen questions. However, residents are concerned after seeing land surveyors walk into the swampy wooded area over the last few weeks. Holly Arsenault, who lives in a home right on the property line of the area, even said one of them told her the owner, Jacob Wolofsky, has already acquired all necessary permits and construction will begin in February. "If that's true, he's dreaming in colour," Rochon replied. When The Chronicle went to visit the street last Thursday, Arsenault showed a row of rocks that separates her yard from Wolofsky's property. Planted alongside both sides of that makeshift border are 45 trees, which Arsenault said play a large role in keeping her home from flooding when nearby Rivière des Prairies rises in the spring. "He said he's going to cut them down," Arsenault said, adding about half of them are on the developer's side. Another Fifth Avenue North resident, France Marsant, voiced her displeasure at the Wednesday meeting too. "Our street had a very peaceful, very calm character," she said. "We find it unthinkable to have a big block of eight floors on the street, which could lead to 300 cars going into the street by the summer." Borough Mayor Monique Worth insisted Pierrefonds was doing all in its power to ensure legal norms force the developer to create a reasonable project. "Our norms are getting higher and higher," she said. Rochon said previous bylaws allowed a 12-storey high project on the site, but the borough's revisions have already cut that size down to eight. At least one resident of the street was skeptical anything could be built at all. "I wouldn't even invest a cent into that land, it's a swamp," said Michel Davuluy, who has been living there for several years. After the meeting, Worth conceded the city of Montreal would, in an ideal world, like to buy up that land and turn into green space. "I think, in a way, we would like it to be a part of green space that would start, let's say, west of the Rapides du Cheval Blanc and end with that piece of property," Worth said. "But we can't force him to sell at a lower price because we would like to. It's up to him, it's his decision," she said. Though the land is valuated at about $188,000, a purchase by Montreal would cost millions because it is a public body, Worth said. Montreal had a right of expropriation on the property in question up to last May, but did not renew it after it expired, Marsant mentioned at the meeting. Wolofsky did not return calls for comment.
  13. 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
  14. Downturn Ends Building Boom in New York Charles Blaichman, at an unfinished tower at West 14th Street, is struggling to finance three proposed hotels by the High Line. NYtimes By CHRISTINE HAUGHNEY Published: January 07, 2009 Nearly $5 billion in development projects in New York City have been delayed or canceled because of the economic crisis, an extraordinary body blow to an industry that last year provided 130,000 unionized jobs, according to numbers tracked by a local trade group. The setbacks for development — perhaps the single greatest economic force in the city over the last two decades — are likely to mean, in the words of one researcher, that the landscape of New York will be virtually unchanged for two years. “There’s no way to finance a project,” said the researcher, Stephen R. Blank of the Urban Land Institute, a nonprofit group. Charles Blaichman is not about to argue with that assessment. Looking south from the eighth floor of a half-finished office tower on 14th Street on a recent day, Mr. Blaichman pointed to buildings he had developed in the meatpacking district. But when he turned north to the blocks along the High Line, once among the most sought-after areas for development, he surveyed a landscape of frustration: the planned sites of three luxury hotels, all stalled by recession. Several indicators show that developers nationwide have also been affected by the tighter lending markets. The growth rate for construction and land development loans shrunk drastically this year — to 0.08 percent through September, compared with 11.3 percent for all of 2007 and 25.7 percent in 2006, according to data tracked by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. And developers who have loans are missing payments. The percentage of loans in default nationwide jumped to 7.3 percent through September 2008, compared with 1 percent in 2007, according to data tracked by Reis Inc., a New York-based real estate research company. New York’s development world is rife with such stories as developers who have been busy for years are killing projects or scrambling to avoid default because of the credit crunch. Mr. Blaichman, who has built two dozen projects in the past 20 years, is struggling to borrow money: $370 million for the three hotels, which include a venture with Jay-Z, the hip-hop mogul. A year ago, it would have seemed a reasonable amount for Mr. Blaichman. Not now. “Even the banks who want to give us money can’t,” he said. The long-term impact is potentially immense, experts said. Construction generated more than $30 billion in economic activity in New York last year, said Louis J. Coletti, the chief executive of the Building Trades Employers’ Association. The $5 billion in canceled or delayed projects tracked by Mr. Coletti’s association include all types of construction: luxury high-rise buildings, office renovations for major banks and new hospital wings. Mr. Coletti’s association, which represents 27 contractor groups, is talking to the trade unions about accepting wage cuts or freezes. So far there is no deal. Not surprisingly, unemployment in the construction industry is soaring: in October, it was up by more than 50 percent from the same period last year, labor statistics show. Experience does not seem to matter. Over the past 15 years, Josh Guberman, 48, developed 28 condo buildings in Brooklyn and Manhattan, many of them purchased by well-paid bankers. He is cutting back to one project in 2009. Donald Capoccia, 53, who has built roughly 4,500 condos and moderate-income housing units in all five boroughs, took the day after Thanksgiving off, for the first time in 20 years, because business was so slow. He is shifting his attention to projects like housing for the elderly on Staten Island, which the government seems willing to finance. Some of their better known and even wealthier counterparts are facing the same problems. In August, Deutsche Bank started foreclosure proceedings against William S. Macklowe over his planned project at the former Drake Hotel on Park Avenue. Kent M. Swig, Mr. Macklowe’s brother-in-law, recently shut down the sales office for a condo tower planned for 25 Broad Street after his lender, Lehman Brothers, declared bankruptcy in September. Several commercial and residential brokers said they were spending nearly half their days advising developers who are trying to find new uses for sites they fear will not be profitable. “That rug has been pulled out from under their feet,” said David Johnson, a real estate broker with Eastern Consolidated who was involved with selling the site for the proposed hotel to Mr. Blaichman, Jay-Z and their business partners for $66 million, which included the property and adjoining air rights. Mr. Johnson said that because many banks are not lending, the only option for many developers is to take on debt from less traditional lenders like foreign investors or private equity firms that charge interest rates as high as 20 percent. That doesn’t mean that all construction in New York will grind to a halt immediately. Mr. Guberman is moving forward with one condo tower at 87th Street and Broadway that awaits approval for a loan; he expects it will attract buyers even in a slowing economy. Mr. Capoccia is trying to finish selling units at a Downtown Brooklyn condominium project, and is slowly moving ahead on applying for permits for an East Village project. Mr. Blaichman, 54, is keeping busy with four buildings financed before the slowdown. He has found fashion and advertising firms to rent space in his tower at 450 West 14th Street and buyers for two downtown condo buildings. He recently rented a Lower East Side building to the School of Visual Arts as a dorm. Mr. Blaichman had success in Greenwich Village and the meatpacking district, where he developed the private club SoHo House, the restaurant Spice Market and the Theory store. He had similar hopes for the area along the High Line, where he bought properties last year when they were fetching record prices. An art collector, he considered the area destined for growth because of its many galleries and its proximity to the park being built on elevated railroad tracks that have given the area its name. The park, which extends 1.45 miles from Gansevoort Street to 34th Street, is expected to be completed in the spring. Other developers have shown that buyers will pay high prices to be in the area. Condo projects designed by well-known architects like Jean Nouvel and Annabelle Selldorf have been eagerly anticipated. In recent months, buyers have paid $2 million for a two-bedroom unit and $3 million for a three-bedroom at Ms. Selldorf’s project, according to Streeteasy.com, a real estate Web site. “It’s one of the greatest stretches of undeveloped areas,” Mr. Blaichman said. “I still think it’s going to take off.” In August 2007, Mr. Blaichman bought the site and air rights of a former Time Warner Cable warehouse. He thought the neighborhood needed its first full-service five-star hotel, in contrast to the many boutique hotels sprouting up downtown. So with his partners, Jay-Z and Abram and Scott Shnay, he envisioned a hotel with a pool, gym, spa and multiple restaurants under a brand called J Hotels. But since his mortgage brokers started shopping in late summer for roughly $200 million in financing, they have only one serious prospect for a lender. For now, he is seeking an extension on the mortgage — monthly payments are to begin in the coming months — and trying to rent the warehouse. (He currently has no income from the property.) It is perhaps small comfort that his fellow developers are having as many problems getting loans. Shaya Boymelgreen had banks “pull back” recently on financing for a 107-unit rental tower the developer is building at 500 West 23rd Street, according to Sara Mirski, managing director of development for Boymelgreen Developers. The half-finished project looked abandoned on two recent visits, but Ms. Mirski said that construction will continue. Banks have “invited” the developer to reapply for a loan next year and have offered interim bridge loans for up to $30 million. Mr. Blaichman cuts a more mellow figure than many other developers do. He avoids the real estate social scene, tries to turn his cellphone off after 6 p.m. and plays folk guitar in his spare time. For now, Mr. Blaichman seems stoic about his plight. At a diner, he polished off a Swiss-cheese omelet and calmly noted that he had no near-term way to pay off his debts. He exercises several times a week and tells his three children to curb their shopping even as he regularly presses his mortgage bankers for answers. “I sleep pretty well,” Mr. Blaichman said. “There’s nothing you can do in the middle of the night that will help your projects.” But even when the lending market improves — in months, or years — restarting large-scale projects will not be a quick process. A freeze in development, in fact, could continue well after the recession ends. Mr. Blank of the Urban Land Institute said he has taken to giving the following advice to real estate executives: “We told them to take up golf.” Correction: An article on Saturday about the end of the building boom in New York City referred incorrectly to the family relationship between the developers William S. Macklowe, whose planned project at the former Drake Hotel is in foreclosure, and Kent M. Swig, who shut down the sales office for a condominium tower on Broad Street after his lender, Lehman Brothers, declared bankruptcy. Mr. Swig is Mr. Macklowe’s brother-in-law, not his son-in-law.
  15. Its LIVE Took almost 6 months but its finally in Canada. Take that TomTom GPS unit. Navigation is awesome you can drive around and you get Street View at the same time. Check it out <object width="640" height="385"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGXK4jKN_jY&color1=0xb1b1b1&color2=0xd0d0d0&hl=en_us&feature=player_embedded&fs=1"></param><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true"></param><param name="allowScriptAccess" value="always"></param><embed src="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tGXK4jKN_jY&color1=0xb1b1b1&color2=0xd0d0d0&hl=en_us&feature=player_embedded&fs=1" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" allowfullscreen="true" allowScriptAccess="always" width="640" height="385"></embed></object> One other thing. Google and Ford partnered up it seems so you can sync your Google Map info with your car Navigation system!
  16. Anybody planning on seeing this movie? I saw 2 or 3 previews and it looks damn good. I loved the original movie, I just hope the 2nd one doesn't suck! I've also read a few reviews, and they were all good.
  17. http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/06/nyregion/06broadway.html?_r=2&ref=michael_m_grynbaum&pagewanted=all Ceux qui n'aiment pas les "piétonisations" à Mtl devront s'y faire. C'est un mouvement de fond, et généralisé.....
  18. (Courtesy of The Montreal Gazette) I'll post my comment soon, stuck doing some paper work right now
  19. Trouble on The Main The former home of American Apparel on St. Laurent Blvd. now carries a For Rent sign. “I won’t deny that the construction on the street did affect traffic,” says Dan Abenhaim, the chain’s Canadian regional director. Other shop owners say the recession and high rents have hurt business on along the strip. Photograph by: John Mahoney, The Gazette By Irwin Block, The GazetteApril 24, 2009 The former home of American Apparel on St. Laurent Blvd. now carries a For Rent sign. “I won’t deny that the construction on the street did affect traffic,” says Dan Abenhaim, the chain’s Canadian regional director. Other shop owners say the recession and high rents have hurt business on along the strip. It’s known to generations as The Main and it’s as Montreal as smoked meat and the Habs. St. Laurent Blvd. is us, and in tribute to its Portuguese component, city officials on Friday inaugurated a dozen marble-topped benches between Bagg and Marie Anne Sts. But things are not going that well for some merchants, especially on the trendiest part of the street between Sherbrooke St. and Pine Ave. It’s still home to such fancy eateries as Buona Notte and Primadonna, but in the past months several major tenants have closed. They include an American Apparel store and a Mac Cosmetics outlet; the space formerly occupied by Sofia Grill at the northwest corner of Prince Arthur St. and St. Laurent is for rent, as are several other shops farther north. Dan Abenhaim, American Apparel’s Canadian regional director, said that after five years the firm decided not to renew the lease. “I won’t deny that the construction on the street did affect traffic and we decided we want to open in another location.” He also said that over five years “the street has changed and the traffic is more north of Pine Ave.” However, clothing shops are also hurting north of Pine, where Adam & Lilith has closed one of two adjoining shops on St. Laurent. According to assistant manager Carmel Pacaud, people are still attracted to the street but they are not buying as they used to. Other shop owners blame almost two years of disruptive road repairs that ended last year, as well as the recession and high rents. “The city has murdered the street,” said one real estate agent, who spoke on the condition his name not be used. People who were put off by the construction are not coming back and there is a moratorium on new restaurants and bars between Sherbrooke and Mount Royal Ave., he added. Rent at the former Mac Cosmetics store is about $7,500 a month for 1,600 square feet. Rents tend to decrease north of Pine. “It’s a little distressing, slower than usual” remarked Marnie Blanshay, who owns Lola & Emily ladies wear just south of the abandoned American Apparel. Many who were discouraged from shopping there by the ripping up and repaving of the strip have not returned, she observed. And because few retail clothing shops remain, hers is more of a “destination store” with fewer shoppers coming by to go from store to store checking out and comparing. “It reminds me of Crescent St. in the 1990s,” she said, adding that “the landlords believe it’s better than it is and need to reduce rents.” When rents go down, the creative people will return to reinject the street’s normal vitality, she said. “St. Laurent Blvd. is not a street where chains succeed.” Apart from Jean Coutu and Pharmaprix, American Apparel was the only chain outlet on the street, noted André Beauséjour, executive director of the Société de développment du Boulevard St. Laurent. He said the vacancy rate between Sherbrooke and Mount Royal is a “normal” two per cent. A stroll up the boulevard yesterday indicated that many stores that have become institutions – Bar Bifteck, Salaison Slovenia, Schreter’s, Coco Rico, Moishe’s, Segal’s grocery, Berson Monuments – are still going concerns. And there was the proverbial lunchtime lineup inside Schwartz’s. But if you have a concept, there is lots of space for rent, including the former Laurentian Bank at St. Laurent and Pine. – all 5,400 square feet. [email protected]est.com © Copyright © The Montreal Gazette
  20. I was taking a look around at Detroit on GoogleMaps Streetview. Am I glad I don't live there!
  21. First the Main, now it's downtown's turn Construction. Major projects have merchants, drivers in grumble mode Motorists negotiate the traffic and construction at de Maisonneuve Blvd. and Guy St. yesterday. The statue of Norman Bethune has been removed while work is under way.DAVE SIDAWAY THE GAZETTE, JASON MAGDER, The Gazette If you want to know how much it has snowed this winter, head for Place Norman Bethune at de Maisonneuve Blvd. and Guy St. The square, which is the cornerstone of a $22-million facelift for the Concordia University neighbourhood, has been cordoned off with metal fences since October. As a result, snow banks have grown to three metres. However, the transformation of Place Bethune is only one of three major construction projects under way on the corner. Motorists negotiate the traffic and construction at de Maisonneuve Blvd. and Guy St. yesterday. The statue of Norman Bethune has been removed while work is under way Like the merchants caught up in the seemingly endless construction on St. Laurent Blvd., those in this corner of downtown feel choked by street work. While improvements are wrapping up on the Main, crews are just getting started on the Place Bethune beautification project that is expected to last at least until 2011. In the meantime, it' a corner of hell for motorists and pedestrians. "Nobody passes by here anymore," said Mohammad Saken, 28, the manager of Dépanneur Beau Prix on de Maisonneuve west of Guy. "It's already our second year with construction here, and it looks like we're going to have long-term construction. That's going to screw up our business big time." Some merchants complain the constant construction is also dangerous. Saad Salem, the kitchen manager at the Château Kabab restaurant, said he saw a man fall into a hole, which had been dug three weeks ago by the city's Electrical Services Commission to work on underground wiring on Guy north of de Maisonneuve. "A few days ago, a handicapped man fell right into the hole because he didn't see it," Salem said, adding the man wasn't seriously injured. "The company came the next day and put up a fence around the area. But they made the hole and then left it like that, without doing any work. That wasn't a great idea." Serge Boileau, president of the Electrical Services Commission, did not return calls yesterday. Merchants say they are pleased the city is spending money to beautify the area, but say the timing is bad, coming after a summer in which they had to contend both with construction on a new Concordia business school and jackhammers installing a bike path along de Maisonneuve's south side. The bike path is completed, but cyclists, pedestrians and motorists have an obstacle course of four construction sites to negotiate just to cross the street. A southbound lane of Guy is closed from de Maisonneuve to Ste. Catherine St. while crews working on Concordia's new John Molson School of Business building, as is part of de Maisonneuve west of Guy. The north side of de Maisonneuve between Mackay and Guy Sts. is also blocked by traffic cones and trailers, which are used by construction foremen as offices. "It's slushy and dirty and it hasn't been cleaned up in ages," said Melissa Ajamian, 21, who lives on St. Mathieu St. "You used to be able to just walk through this area, but now it's very difficult." Sylvain Ducas, the city's project manager of Place Bethune, said it will take two years to complete the work on the square. "We could have done it in one year, but we need to keep the street open," Ducas said. "I'm sure the merchants will agree with that."
  22. Sherbrooke street Prince Arthur Milton-Parc Duluth/St-Denis St-Denis René-Lévesque Sainte-Catherine Square Phillip/Sainte-Catherine
  23. Montreal hotels offer escape from tourists Graeme Hamilton, National Post MONTREAL - At street level, there is an old-world charm to parts of this city, where horse-drawn caleches roll over cobblestone streets, passing buildings dating from the French regime. But then again, the smell of horse urine can get a little pungent on a steaming-hot day, the cobblestones can do a number on your ankle if you're not careful, and for every building of historic interest there's another housing a tacky souvenir shop. Montreal's year-round inhabitants have discovered a new escape route from the tourist-clogged streets, which oddly enough begins in a hotel lobby. A number of city hotels have sprouted rooftop terrasses where the (admittedly steep) price of a beer is also said to buy you a smashing view, a chance to mix with the in crowd and in one case, a dip in the pool if the spirit moves you. The trend has been fuelled by a proliferation of boutique hotels in Old Montreal, which have helped revive a neighbourhood that had been sliding. The best of a bunch sampled recently was atop the Hotel Nelligan, just up from the waterfront on St. Paul Street West. In one direction, the view was of the St. Lawrence River, Ile Notre-Dame and Moshe Safdie's Habitat '67 apartment complex, gleaming as it caught the early-evening sun; in the other, Notre-Dame basilica loomed. Dormer windows on adjacent buildings looked very Parisian, although the music -- an eclectic mix of oldies ranging from Lynyrd Skynyrd to Smokey Robinson -- screamed 1970s rec room. The terrasse, called Sky, does not exactly qualify as a best-kept secret. The rooftop was packed, and the area reserved for dining had an hour-long wait for a table. An even larger crowd awaited atop the Hotel Place d'Armes on the Aix terrasse. After wandering past hotel rooms to find the door leading to the roof, we were greeted by a bouncer recording each arrival and departure with a handheld counter. Asked how many people there were, he replied that the information was "confidential." A waiter said we had arrived on the patio's busiest night of the week, a Thursday. It was largely an after-work crowd looking to start the weekend early; a hotel guest looking for a relaxing cocktail in the sun would have been surprised to find a scene fit for Crescent Street, the city's famous nightclub strip. "It's happy hour," the waiter advised us, which seemed hard to believe after having just paid $7.50 for a bottle of beer. He clarified that the prices are unchanged during this particular bar's happy hour. It's just that people are happy. The view was not the best, hurt by the fact Montreal planners over the years have allowed an architectural jewel such as the basilica to be dwarfed by modern monstrosities such as the National Bank tower on Place d'Armes and the courthouse a block to the east. For a view, the hands-down winner was Hotel de la Montagne, in the city's downtown -- and not just because its rooftop pool is surrounded by bikini-clad sunbathers. On a recent evening, looking southeast we could see clear to the Eastern Townships. In the foreground was Montreal's skyline and behind us Mount Royal. The hotel has no pretense of "boutique" trendiness, from the ebony elephants and crocodile statues in the lobby to the party atmosphere on the rooftop. "People say that it is dated, so what, so is your girlfriend," a young Ohio man who recently stayed at the hotel wrote on tripadvisor.com last month. "The pool on the roof is as cool as it gets. We arrived on Friday afternoon, and the roof looked like a scene from spring break in Cancun." Our waitress advised us that the small pool is open to all customers whether they are staying at the hotel or not, "as long as you have alcohol." Not too much, she hastened to add, relating the story of a drunken man who had a contest with friends to see who could stay underwater the longest. He never came up, she said.