A Bit More Detail

Assorted Personal Notations, Essays, and Other Jottings

Archive for the ‘Urban Note’ Category

[URBAN NOTE] Five Toronto links: Don River park, safety, Soroush Mahmudi, TTC and King Street

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  • blogTO notes impressive plans for a grand new park at the mouth of the Don River, by Lake Ontario.
  • Toronto, happily for its residents, happens to be the fourth-safest major city in the world by one ranking. CTV reports
  • This account of the life Soroush Mahmudi, one of the victims of the Church-Wellesley serial killer, as told by his wife is heartbreaking. The Toronto Star has it.
  • This Katie Daubs account at the Toronto Star of Al Falcone, the King Street restaurateur who is leading protest against the transit project on that corridor, is entertaining reading, at least.
  • Edward Keenan makes the suggestion that the street hockey players protesting King Street’s transit are missing the point. With the street freed up, what other non-traffic uses could it serve? The Toronto Star has it.

[URBAN NOTE] Five city links: New York City, Shenzhen and Guangzhou, Berlin, Amsterdam, Istanbul

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  • What does the impending demolition of the venerable Union Carbide tower, at 270 Park Avenue, to make way for a new ultratall skyscraper say about changing New York City? New York reports.
  • The South China Morning Post observes how the cities of Shenzhen and Guangzhou, though still behind Hong Kong, are starting to advance past it as a result of these cities’ sustained investment in innovative technologies.
  • Aldi in Berlin will apparently build affordable student housing on top of at least some of its new discount food stores in Berlin. Bloomberg reports.
  • This VICE article looking at the lives of lonely people in Amsterdam, many newcomers, is affecting.
  • The Crisis Group looks at how Syrian refugees, of diverse ethnicities and religions, are finding a new home in the multiethnic Istanbul neighbourhood of Sultangazi.

[URBAN NOTE] Five city links: Niagara Falls, Brantford, Regina, Tofino, Port Moody

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  • Why are the falls at Niagara Falls so famously compelling, even lethally seductive for some? Some human brains might be confused by the immensity. The National Post reports.
  • The extent of the flooding in Brantford, inland from Hamilton on the Grand River, is shocking. The Toronto Star reports.
  • The Saskatchewan capital city of Regina turns out to be the McDonald’s breakfast capital of Canada. Global News reports.
  • This essay in The Globe and Mail by Greg Blanchette looking at the rental housing crunch in the small Vancouver Island town of Tofino describes what’s frankly a terrifying situation.
  • If not for the fact that the CP Railway owned no property locally, the Vancouver suburb of Port Moody could well have become Canada’s biggest west coast metropolis. Global News reports.

[URBAN NOTE] Seven Toronto links: TTC, Sonja Bata, St. Lawrence Market, Yorkville, Bloor Street West

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  • blogTO shares, from r/Toronto, a fantastic map imagining a Toronto densely covered with all sorts of mass transit routes, from subways and streetcars down to ferries. Beautiful.
  • This city ombudsman’s inquiry as to why TTC fare inspectors seemingly assaulted a black teen is certainly needed. CBC reports.
  • The recent death of Sonja Bata, among other things founder of the excellent Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto, has been noted locally. Global News reports.
  • Delayed by archeological work, the North Building at St. Lawrence Market is projected to cost in excess of 100 million dollars. The Toronto Star reports.
  • A proposed new condo tower on Yorkville’s Prince Arthur Avenue, projected to rise nearly two dozen stories in a definitely avant-garde style, is unpopular among future neighbours. CBC reports.
  • At Toronto Storeys, Christopher Hume considers facadism. When does it work? Where has it worked in Toronto?
  • At NOW Toronto, Samantha Edwards takes a look at six new housing developments along Bloor Street West, stretching from Jane through High Park North all the way to Dufferin.

[URBAN NOTE] Five Canada links: Ontario golf and sales tax, Goderich, Winnipeg, Vancouver

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  • TVO notes that municipally-operated gold courses are apparently commonplace in Ontario. Should cities divest of these, freeing up land and cost for other better uses?
  • The idea of municipal sales taxes seems like something that should get implemented in Ontario cities, yet few seem willing to move on this. The Toronto Star examines the issue.
  • CBC reports on how the small southern Ontario town of Goderich managed to accumulate 18 family doctors, thanks to a concerted and planned effort to recruit new physicians.
  • Global News takes a look at some of the ghost signs of Winnipeg, legacies of an early commercial era.
  • Terry Glavin at MacLean’s suggests that the government of British Columbia might finally be taking steps to ensure affordable real estate options in Metro Vancouver.

[URBAN NOTE] Seven Toronto links: Dafonte Miller, Pacific Mall, Scarborough, real estate, TTC

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  • The whole sorry story of Dafonte Miller, who was brutally beaten by two off-duty policemen whose actions were not reported to SIU and may in fact have been covered up by (among others) their cop father, is appalling. Do not trust the police. The Toronto Star reports.
  • The Pacific Mall has started to crack down, again, on counterfeit goods. The Toronto Star reports.
  • Extending bike share programs to Scarborough sounds like a good idea in theory, but is there yet the density and infrastructure needed to support this? The Toronto Star reports.
  • Trying to avoid Toronto becoming a preserve of the rich is a key goal. Will this result in the structural change to housing markets needed? The Toronto Star reports.
  • Residents of a condo complex at Bayview and Eglinton are concerned about the effects of Eglinton Crosstown construction, making it difficult for them to feel safe going to and from their homes. CBC reports.
  • Transit Toronto reports on the TTC’s latest overcrowding measures.
  • A Toronto real estate crunch could well drive talented people and professionals away from the city, one study reports. The Toronto Star notes.

[URBAN NOTE] Five Toronto links: King Street, Annex, Yonge and Sheppard, Chinatown, Keita Morimoto

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  • Global News reports that, based on spending data from Moneris, consumer expenditures on King Street have not dropped during the transit experiment.
  • The homeless shelter in the Davenport Triangle area, thankfully, seems to be going through notwithstanding some local opposition and with the help of other locals. The Toronto Star reports.
  • An area of unused land near Yonge and Sheppard may not become a park after all, due to disputes over ownership. CBC reports.
  • These photos exploring how Chinatown on Spadina has evolved over the decades provide a good perspective on the development of this key neighoburhood. CBC reports.
  • Toronto Life showcases the classic paintings of Keita Morimoto, currently with an exhibition at the Nicholas Metivier Gallery downtown.