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Re: [carfree_cities] canada.com Story

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  • Christopher Miller
    Many good points, Mike; a couple of my comments follow... ... Spot on about the history; and yes, as a Montrealer, I forgot that not everyone is in on the
    Message 1 of 15 , May 6, 2003
      Many good points, Mike; a couple of my comments follow...

      On Monday, May 5, 2003, at 06:30 pm, Mike Harrington wrote:

      > What the article doesn't mention is that the large Montréal subway
      > system
      > makes the underground city possible. The development of the métro
      > (subway)
      > has coincided with that of the city. Montrealers may need to correct
      > me,
      > but I think the subterranean development started there with the
      > construction
      > of Place Ville Marie in 1964 and the first métro train in 1966. But
      > then,
      > the Gazette is a Montréal newspaper, and most people reading it would
      > know
      > that.

      Spot on about the history; and yes, as a Montrealer, I forgot that not
      everyone is in on the Metro connection. In fact, there are a number of
      segments in the underground/indoor city that are unconnected except by
      the Metro lines themselves. Another point: the underground city does
      have a downside, namely that much of the space that makes it up is
      private property in commercial buildings and many of these areas
      actually close late in the evening, unlike the regular streets.

      > (...) There is a huge amount of foot traffic and I'd
      > venture to say that Montrealers get more exercise than the typical
      > person in
      > North America.

      In fact, the downtown area has the highest density of people walking to
      work, according to statistics published a few years ago.

      > (...) The public transit operator, la Société de Transport de la
      > Communauté
      > Urbaine de Montréal, has an excellent Acrobat map giving some idea of
      > the
      > scope of what is without a doubt one of the most fascinating urban
      > complex
      > on the planet:
      >
      > http://www.stcum.qc.ca/metro/mtl-sout.pdf

      I'm glad the link still works; since amalgamation at the beginning of
      the year, the Montreal Urban Community (a couple of dozen separate
      municipalities)
      has become an enlarged City of Montreal. The old MUCTC is now (as in
      the 1960s) the Montreal Transportation Commission/Société des
      tronsports de Montréal, and their new site is at http://www.stm.info .

      Chris Miller

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • Louis-Luc
      ... A good example is Place Alexis-Nihon, at Atwater station, 2 stops west from the main city. This is a huge shopping mall, with everything you find in the
      Message 2 of 15 , May 6, 2003
        >
        > Many good points, Mike; a couple of my comments follow...
        >
        > On Monday, May 5, 2003, at 06:30 pm, Mike Harrington wrote:
        >
        > > What the article doesn't mention is that the large Montréal subway
        > > system
        > > makes the underground city possible. The development of the métro
        > > (subway)
        > > has coincided with that of the city. Montrealers may need to correct
        > > me,
        > > but I think the subterranean development started there with the
        > > construction
        > > of Place Ville Marie in 1964 and the first métro train in 1966. But
        > > then,
        > > the Gazette is a Montréal newspaper, and most people reading it would
        > > know
        > > that.
        >
        > Spot on about the history; and yes, as a Montrealer, I forgot that not
        > everyone is in on the Metro connection. In fact, there are a number of
        > segments in the underground/indoor city that are unconnected except by
        > the Metro lines themselves.
        A good example is Place Alexis-Nihon, at Atwater station, 2 stops west from
        the main city. This is a huge shopping mall, with everything you find in the
        typical North-American mall, except you access it by the metro.
        There is also Berri-UQAM station, 2 stops east from
        the main city, where 3 of the 4 lines meet, which
        also has some interesting places like the
        Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) main campus,
        Place Dupuis (formerly the large surface all-purpose
        store Dupuis Frères, now replaced with offices, stores
        and restaurants), and the upcoming huge library, Grande Bibliothèque du
        Québec, which is under construction.
        Even though this section is not connected to the main core, two metro lines
        link them, so if one is temporarily stopped, one can use the other.



        Another point: the underground city does
        > have a downside, namely that much of the space that makes it up is
        > private property in commercial buildings and many of these areas
        > actually close late in the evening, unlike the regular streets.
        That's the bad point, indeed. I live in suburb now, so I never walk there
        after the last train. I imagine late at night, they must provide you with a
        path to walk to the metro, until metro closes.

        The next step is to ask the City if they could buy the private corridors,
        and make them as open as streets. If we think about it carefully, many
        outdoor lands owners who build many buildings "gave literally away" the
        space for the new street to the city, which paved it over for cars. I think
        it's time to do the same for walking.

        Let's take an alley, behind many house backyards. It's like a small street,
        but private. The City has no right to manage it. If cars are allowed (some
        owners don't want cars in, but children in this refuge), then the
        entire responsibility is given to car owner. In the winter, it's not
        guaranteed they can drive through, unless all other residents take off the
        snow. If one wants to keep the snow, then car owners certainly can't do
        anything (or maybe plow it themselves....)
        >
        > > (...) There is a huge amount of foot traffic and I'd
        > > venture to say that Montrealers get more exercise than the typical
        > > person in
        > > North America.
        >
        > In fact, the downtown area has the highest density of people walking to
        > work, according to statistics published a few years ago.
        Not surprising at all. With such a life quality, who
        wouldn't walk?

        Louis-Luc
      • Louis-Luc
        Hi, again. Today, I happened to walk towards gap between Square Victoria metro and Palais des Congrès, and I happily noticed the new walkway was open! I
        Message 3 of 15 , May 7, 2003
          Hi, again.

          Today, I happened to walk towards gap between Square
          Victoria metro and Palais des Congrès, and I happily
          noticed the new walkway was open! I slowly started to
          stroll in to explore the new environment, and see where I would get. This
          place is really futurist. Beautiful neon lights are lighting the tall walls
          from the bottom, and these walls are made of thick glass panels.
          The brand new floors are all shiny, and the corridor is wide, so it can
          accomodate a good load of traffic.
          I ended up passing a door and recognizing the Palais des Congrès floor by
          the tile pattern. I arrived at the
          escalator which was not operating, so I climbed up like
          normal stairs. On the ground level I surprisingly
          saw the barrier poles were still blocking the way. I
          passed in the tiny gap next to the wall, and the guard came to me and said I
          was not allowed to go where I came from! He couldn't see me go in, no matter
          how well he keeps an eye on the prohibited area :-)

          I told him I went all the way from Square-Victoria metro and ended up there,
          and the passage was open.
          He told me they were making audio testings for the
          alarm systems, and the passageway would open in 2 to
          3 weeks. I told him the place is very beautiful and
          futurist. I continued my way to the Complexe Desjardins, thinking that May
          7, 2003 is the very first day I make the link between two formerly unlinked
          major sections of the Underground City.

          I'll wait for the delay to elapse before returning, but if a Montrealer from
          our forum want to give it the try before the official opening, I guess it
          would be cool.
          Of course, take the passage from Square-Victoria metro, to Palais des
          Congrès (and not the other way around), and tell us what the guard says. You
          just need to say you came from the metro and didn't know...

          The guards and other staff will just notice that the
          passageway system is awaited, and is already popular
          even before the official launch.

          Louis-Luc
        • m82a1_dawson@hotmail.com
          Dear T_2000@yahoogroups.com, carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, montrain@lists.ca, Your friend m82a1_dawson@hotmail.com thought you might be interested in this
          Message 4 of 15 , Mar 16, 2004
            Dear T_2000@yahoogroups.com, carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com, montrain@...,

            Your friend m82a1_dawson@... thought you might be interested in this canada.com story:

            "Streetcar named the future"

            http://www.canada.com/montreal/montrealgazette/story.asp?id=249AE7C3-5E1F-4424-A98A-C87D30B8E0E3

            Streetcar named the future
            Montreal lightrail meeting at 4505 Park Avenue tonight (March 16, 19:00). ASD

            _______________________________________
            This is a free service courtesy of
            canada.com (http://www.canada.com)


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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