Jump to content

Recommended Posts

  • Administrator

China's nine-day traffic jam stretches 100km

(AFP) – 16 hours ago

 

 

BEIJING — Thousands of vehicles were bogged down Monday in a more than 100-kilometre (62-mile) traffic jam leading to Beijing that has lasted nine days and highlights China's growing road congestion woes.

 

The Beijing-Tibet expressway slowed to a crawl on August 14 due to a spike in traffic by cargo-bearing heavy trucks heading to the capital, and compounded by road maintenance work that began five days later, the Global Times said.

 

The state-run newspaper said the jam between Beijing and Jining city had given birth to a mini-economy with local merchants capitalising on the stranded drivers' predicament by selling them water and food at inflated prices.

 

That stretch of highway linking Beijing with the northern province of Hebei and the Inner Mongolia region has become increasingly prone to massive jams as the capital of more than 20 million people sucks in huge shipments of goods.

 

Traffic slowed to a snail's pace in June and July for nearly a month, according to earlier press reports.

 

The latest clog has been worsened by the road improvement project, made necessary by highway damage caused by a steady increase in cargo traffic, the Global Times said.

 

China has embarked in recent years on a huge expansion of its national road system but soaring traffic periodically overwhelms the grid.

 

The congestion was expected to last into mid-September as the road project will not be finished until then, the newspaper said.

 

The roadway is a major artery for the supply of produce, coal and other goods to Beijing.

 

Video: http://news.sky.com/skynews/Home/World-News/A-100km-Long-Traffic-Jam-In-Beijing-Enters-Its-Ninth-Day-And-Could-Continue-For-A-Month/Article/201008415702670?lpos=World_News_First_Home_Article_Teaser_Region_4&lid=ARTICLE_15702670_A_100km-Long_Traffic_Jam_In_Beijing_Enters_Its_Ninth_Day_And_Could_Continue_For_A_Month

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Similar Content

    • By Davidbourque
      Wow, disons que la norvège a de grande ambition pour son réseau autoroutier. 47 milliards pour une population de 5.3 millions d'habitant, disons que c'est tout un défi !
       
      Pendant ce temps on se demande si on devrais doté Montréal d'une ligne rose..
       
      Disons que les ingénieurs norvégiens ne semble pas appeurer des défi collossaux que le projet a. 
    • By mtlurb
      Quartier Concordia
       
      Quartier Concordia will transform the Sir George Williams campus from a collection of scattered buildings into a welcoming and cohesive urban campus in the area bordered generally by Sherbrooke, Guy, René-Lévesque, and Bishop.
      The goals of the Quartier Concordia project include improving the use of outdoor spaces, stimulating street life, and providing respite for the Concordia community and the public. The project will optimize vehicular and bicycle traffic as well as pedestrian flow, facilitate movement between campus buildings, and ensure the safe interaction of vehicles and pedestrians. Quartier Concordia will also maintain a welcoming environment for the Concordia community and the public, highlight landmarks, improve the use of space, promote the display of artwork and create a distinct campus environment within the downtown core.
      The project will be carried out over several years by Groupe Cardinal Hardy and in conjunction with the City of Montreal.
       
      Facts:

      A multi-year project
      Landscape architect: Groupe Cardinal Hardy
      Location: The area bordered by Sherbrooke, Guy, René-Lévesque, and Bishop
      The project will promote a distinct, welcoming, and efficient downtown campus
    • By Grumpy
      Habitat ‘67 developed out of architect Moshe Safdie’s 1961 thesis design project and report ("A Three-Dimensional Modular Building System" and "A Case for City Living" respectively). The building was realized as the main pavilion and thematic emblem for the International World Exposition and its theme, Man and His World, held in Montreal in 1967 (movie). Born of the socialist ideals of the 1960s, Safdie’s thesis housing project explored new solutions to urban design challenges and high-density living. His ideas evolved into a three-part building system which pioneered the combined use of a three-dimensional urban structure, specific construction techniques (the prefabrication and mass-production of prototypal modules), and the adaptability of these methods to various site conditions for construction conceivably around the world (Safdie would later be commissioned to design other 'Habitat' projects in North America and abroad).
       
      The outcome of Safdie’s thesis explorations, Habitat ’67 in essence gives life to these ideas. The design for Habitat relies on the multiple use of repetitive elements, called boxes or modules, which were arranged to create 16 differently configured living spaces, for a total of 158 residences within the complex.
       
      http://cac.mcgill.ca/safdie/habitat/default.htm
    • By mtlurb
      Montreal | Cold? Mais oui, but the winter welcome is warm
       
      By Kristin Jackson
      Seattle Times travel staff
       
      PREV 1 of 3 NEXT
       

      STEPHAN POULIN / TOURISM MONTREAL
      Sled-dog races are just one attraction of Montréal's Fête des Neiges, the winter festival.
       

      KRISTIN JACKSON / THE SEATTLE TIMES
      Saint Joseph's Oratory, seen from a tour bus, is one of Montreal's grandest churches.
       


       
      Related

      Archive | Europe without the euro awaits visitors in historic Montreal
      MONTREAL, Quebec — Taxi drivers kept stopping to offer us rides, beckoning to the steamy warmth of their cabs. No wonder; it was 10 degrees below zero on a February night, and we were the only people on the city sidewalk. "Non, merci," I'd wave off the taxis, determined to get some fresh air after spending the day on stuffy planes en route to this French-speaking Canadian city.
       
      The air certainly was fresh — sparkling clear and frigid as my daughter and I trudged along, swaddled in all the clothes we'd packed. I looked like a walking sleeping bag in my old, very puffy down coat.
       
      On the narrow street, wrought-iron banisters and balconies of Victorian buildings were glazed in ice. Snow sparkled in pools of light cast from living rooms and old-fashioned street lamps.
       
      Another taxi stopped: "Vous êtes fous" — you're crazy — said the driver, as we smiled and walked on.
       
      Maybe it was nuts, but the intense cold of the starry night was exhilarating. And thankfully, it warmed up in the next few days to a relatively balmy 15 degrees.
       
       
      Ask Travel
       
      Seattle Times travel writer and editor Kristin Jackson answers your questions about Montreal and other Canadian destinations in a live Q&A at noon Tuesday on seattletimes.com.
       
       
      Off-season pleasures
       
      Winter visitors to Montreal, a city of 3.6 million that's the largest French-speaking city in the western world after Paris, do miss out on the bustling summer life of sidewalk cafes, music and heritage festivals, and the city's world-class film festival.
       
      Yet there are advantages to the off-season. It's much more peaceful, with none of the summertime hordes of tourists who cram the narrow, cobblestone streets of Vieux Montreal, the historic heart of the old city that was founded in 1642 by French settlers.
       
      Flights and hotels are much cheaper. I paid less than $100 a night for a somewhat ramshackle, but cozy, suite with a kitchenette at the small University Bed & Breakfast. Its location was unbeatable — a short walk to the heart of downtown or to the restaurants of the trendy Boulevard Saint-Laurent.
       
      And winter brings its own pleasures, including outdoor skating rinks in the heart of the city; sleigh rides and cross-country skiing in city parks; and an annual winter festival (La Fête des Neiges) with concerts and other cultural events plus snowy fun, including outdoor games of volleyball and soccer and dog-sled races. And there's indoor fun, from shopping and museums to music clubs and restaurants of every ethnicity.
       
      To warm up, we headed indoors to some of Montreal's excellent museums. The premier art museum, the Musée de Beaux-Arts (Museum of Fine Arts), was a stylish place to wander among paintings and sculpture, from European old masters, including Rembrandt, to Islamic art to moody 19th-century Canadian landscape painting.
       
      Day by day, Montrealers beat the cold in "Underground City" (called RÉSO in French), a 20-mile pedestrian network beneath the city center where it's always balmy. The brightly lit underground concourses are lined with hundreds of stores and eateries, and link the city's major sights, hotels, Metro and train stations.
       
      It felt like an endless shopping mall to me, and I soon coaxed my teen daughter away from the trendy shops to the streets above. When we got too chilled, we'd warm up at one of the many European-style bakeries, indulging in fruit tarts or handmade chocolates. I'd order in French; hearing my mangled grammar, the shopkeepers would immediately switch to English. While only about 18 percent of the city's residents are native English speakers, many Montrealers are bilingual.
       
      On the bus
       
      To see more of the city and stay warm, we hopped on a Gray Line sightseeing bus for a three-hour city tour, from the pastoral heights of Mont-Royal, a 343-hilly park that rises steeply above downtown, to the stately stone buildings of Vieux Montreal and the stadium of Olympic Park, where Montreal hosted the 1976 Summer Olympics.
       
      The bus driver cranked up the heat and his patter: "It's a nice shack, eh," he cackled as we passed the sprawling 19th-century mansions of Westmount, the traditional bastion of rich, native-English-speakers. Later, the bus lumbered past the modest row-houses of East Montreal, where exterior iron staircases, built outside to save space, spiral to the upper floors.
       
      The bus became so drowsily hot, it was a relief to get out at viewpoints and at some of Montreal's grand churches, evidence of the once-firm grip of the Catholic church on Montrealers and all of Quebec province. That changed with the "Quiet Revolution" of the 1960s as Quebec turned more affluent, secular and multicultural.
       
      The faithful (and tourists) still flock, however, to St. Joseph's Oratory, a massive hilltop church by Mont-Royal park. Started as a tiny shrine in 1904 by a devout monk, Brother Andre, it expanded through his relentless efforts into an imposing, ornate church with an almost 200-foot-tall dome. Outdoor stairways climb steeply to the church; pilgrims still struggle up them on their knees, imploring for the healing miracles for which Brother Andre was renowned.
       
      Always a fan of visiting churches, I led my daughter into Notre Dame basilica in Vieux Montreal, the historic heart of the city tucked between the broad (and icy) St. Lawrence River and the downtown highrises.
      We whispered as we entered the ornate Catholic church, with its soaring Gothic-style nave, stained-glass windows and a vaulted blue ceiling that shimmers with 24-karat gold stars.
       
      There was only a handful of tourists, dwarfed by the vastness of the church, which, while it looks almost medieval, was built in the 1820s. It was a place to sit quietly, to think of the religion and cultures intertwined with Montreal, where the Iroquoian natives roamed for thousands of years, where French explorers landed in the 1500s, followed by fur traders, settlers and eventually the British and now waves of immigrants from all over the world.
       
       



      Montreal
      Where to stay
      • Stay at a downtown hotel, where you can easily walk to major sites (even in winter, thanks to the "Underground City." Some top hotels and boutiques are on Rue Sherbrooke Ouest, including the landmark Ritz-Carlton Montreal. Other upscale lodgings include the Hotel Sofitel and InterContinental Hotel.
      • I stayed at the moderately priced University Bed & Breakfast (adjacent to the downtown McGill University, Montreal's premier English-language university). It won't suit everyone — furnishings are eclectic and services minimal — but for about $100 a night, I got a cozy suite in an old-fashioned, townhouse-style building, with a living room, bedroom and kitchenette (www.universitybedandbreakfast.ca or 514-842-6396).
       
       
      • Get hotel information and make reservations through the city's tourism office, www.tourisme-montreal.org/ or phone the Quebec Department of Tourism at 877-266-5687.
      Getting around
      You don't need a car in the city; its center is compact, and the downtown and adjacent Vieux Montreal are ideal to explore on foot. For outlying areas, the city has a good Metro system. Guided bus tours are offered through Gray Line Montreal (www.coachcanada.com/montrealsightseeing/), or take a ride in parks or Vieux Montreal on a "caleche," a horse drawn-carriage (or sometimes sleigh).
      Traveler's tip
      • You don't need to speak French to get by in Montreal; English is widely spoken (However, it's generally appreciated if visitors try to speak a bit of French.)
      • While winter can be the most economical and least crowded time in Montreal, late September/early October and May also can be good times to visit, with lower hotel rates and more moderate weather.
      More information
      • Montreal Tourism: www.tourisme-montreal.org/ or 877-266-5687.
       
      • La F&ering;te des Neiges (winter festival): www.fetedesneiges.com/en/
       
      In a Notre Dame side chapel, Catholic schoolchildren finished their prayers. They filed out into the street, bare-legged and laughing in their gray and navy uniforms, skipping along the snowy sidewalk.
      They didn't give Montreal's winter cold a second thought.
    • By mtlurb
      Montreal fest maverick
       
      Serge Losique conquers Montreal scene
       
      By SHANE DANIELSEN
       
       
       
       

      Claude Miller's "Un Secret," starring Cecile de France and Patrick Bruel
       
      In an increasingly corporate fest milieu, Serge Losique is a maverick. Pugnacious, unpredictable, the 76-year-old Montreal World Film Festival chief has for over three decades run his event as a personal fiefdom, as shuttered and inscrutable as the court of Tamburlaine.
       
      He's also a survivor, having seen off a recent challenge that would have sunk many a less determined adversary. Launched amid great fanfare in February 2005, the New Montreal FilmFest quickly signed a high-profile director (former Berlin and Venice topper Moritz de Hadeln) and boasted coin from Canada's major government film offices. It was, its backers claimed, the breath of fresh air the Montreal film scene badly needed.
      But in fact, the newcomer proved one of the fest world's more conspicuous train wrecks.
       
      The omens were not good: Both the fest's staff and its board were castigated by de Hadeln in the Canuck press just days before opening night -- but the reality proved far worse, with few (and flummoxed) guests, an empty red carpet and most films unspooling to near-empty houses. "It was," one attendee commented, "like watching the Lusitania go down. For 11 days."
       
      From across town, you could practically hear Losique's sigh of satisfaction. Sure enough, after that first, disastrous edition, the plug was pulled. Bloodied, but defiantly unbowed, the veteran fest celebrated its 30th anniversary last August.
       
      However, the very creation of a rival fest signaled other, more serious concerns -- specifically, a deepening feud between Losique (who runs his event as a private company, even owning its principal venue, the Imperial Theater) and his chief funders, Canadian government bodies Telefilm Canada and Sodec, the Quebec film agency.
       
      Both claimed disenchantment with Losique's autocratic managerial style and "lack of accountability" to the local film community. In electing to side with the NMFF, they expected his event to fold. Instead, the tyro event went under, leaving both bodies with oeuf on their faces.
       
      "The problems we encountered in the last two years with Telefilm Canada and Sodec are due to the fact that they are judge and jury," Losique reports. "Sooner or later, this approach to culture has to change."
       
      Losique has challenged the status quo before: "We raised these questions (just) as we raised questions about the rules of FIAPF (the Intl. Federation of Film Producers Assn.). We quit them. Now FIAPF is better, with new rules, and we are a member again." In the same way, he says, the relationship with Telefilm Canada is "becoming more normal." His lawsuit against them has quietly been dropped: "We're not yet kissing each other, but we are talking to each other."
       
      Unpredictable programming
       
      Still, Telefilm has not committed to reup its funding: a spokesman would say only that MWFF was still "under evaluation." Sodec, however, has returned to the fold, announcing in June that Losique's event would be once again among the eight Quebec film fests to share its annual C$800,000 ($750,000) pot.
       
      For many attendees, the chief virtue of the World Film Fest -- and the reason for its enduring importance on the fest landscape -- is the sheer unpredictability of its programming. Where Toronto, true to its origins as the Festival of Festivals, essentially culls a greatest-hits lineup from Berlin, Cannes and Venice, the Montreal slate comprises many off-the-radar pics from across the globe.
       
      Last year saw entries from 76 countries; this time, filmmakers from Chad to the U.S. will compete on equal terms for the Grand Prix of the Americas, the event's major award. Many of these will be world premieres. As such, it's a distinct change from the homogenous, shopping-list selections of most fest selections.
       
      Or as Losique puts it: "Our goal is to find the best films from as many countries as possible. We are not looking for 'names,' because even great names can produce bad films. In some festivals, you see the parade of stars and starlets offered by the marketing junket machine of Hollywood. We are not here to please dubious merchants, but to display the gems of the film industry."
       
      Still, he admits to a growing sense of dejection: "The emotional mystery of cinema is disappearing. Today you can buy any film on DVD on the same shelves with cat and dog food. Films d'auteur are gradually dying at the box office, and that's a danger for a quality film festival and also for cinema in general." The only way forward, he believes, is to retain a sense of perspective: "If you're too big, it's not good for cinema and discoveries. If you are too small, you do not exist for the media and sponsors. A festival should not be so big that you cannot even appreciate the films. Some middle road must be found."
×
×
  • Create New...