News   Jun 14, 2024
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Shabby Public Realm

You comments are spot on. One of the things I have noted, and will take decent photos of next growing season, are the plantings most often lining the physically concrete box separated bike lanes In Montreal. . Depending on the lane these planting areas are separated boxes, as shown in construction on one segment of the video, or long planting boxes running the length of the bike lane. The planting encompasses everything from trees to flowers to grasses. And seems to depend on where you are, whether the plantings are planned or just naturally generated. And these plantings can be tall, often creating a ‘hedging’ effect between you on your Bixie and the traffic on the other side of the ‘hedge’. Regardless, they are interesting, humanizing, decorative, and add to the traffic calming of the (recommended) Montreal intersection processes, and as a means of reducing the importance and impact of cars.

Good video, should probably be played at council on the largest screen available……

Planted buffers for bike lanes in Toronto are part of new designs where space permits.

You'll see a lot more in the next few years.

There have been some small retrofits of cycle track w/this already.

Here's Danforth at Kelvin:

1698502250743.jpeg


Also, Dundas near Greenwood:

1698502469847.png

Credit: Becky Katz
 
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the piece of "art" installed at Bathurst south of St. Clair about 5-6 years ago received mixed reviews when it opened. It hasn't gotten any prettier as it aged. Was curious if anyone knows what the future of this monstrosity is. At what point does the neighborhood say it makes the city less attractive and move on from it. I'm sure we can all come up with inexpensive ideas that are much nicer than this (e.g. parkette that has benches and a tree).
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the piece of "art" installed at Bathurst south of St. Clair about 5-6 years ago received mixed reviews when it opened. It hasn't gotten any prettier as it aged. Was curious if anyone knows what the future of this monstrosity is. At what point does the neighborhood say it makes the city less attractive and move on from it. I'm sure we can all come up with inexpensive ideas that are much nicer than this (e.g. parkette that has benches and a tree).View attachment 533891

I'm surprised this got through the city's legal department. Looks like a jungle gym for a real thrill seeker.
 
I'm surprised this got through the city's legal department. Looks like a jungle gym for a real thrill seeker.
it's easy to hate on it and this was discussed plenty when it was installed a few years ago. it was also covered in the main stream media. I'm more interested to know if the local neighbourhood, which needs to look at it every day, is doing anything about it
 
it's easy to hate on it and this was discussed plenty when it was installed a few years ago. it was also covered in the main stream media. I'm more interested to know if the local neighbourhood, which needs to look at it every day, is doing anything about it

No idea what the neighbourhood thinks.......but having had a quick look; I would swap the art out, but I'd probably wait.......

Because when I look at the way Vaughan merges with Bathurst, I see a compelling case for a major re-think here.

I think the slip lane should come out at the end in favour of the more northerly intersection. That would allow the current island to be extended to the west to meet the sidewalk like a real parkette of sorts.

Wait a minute, I hear you say.................what about the access to the church parking lot? I would have the City or an area developer, buy the house at the rear of the church and provide access to the parking off the side street; assuming they aren't interested in selling the parking, in which case, it could make a nice park.....

Hold up, I hear you say, what about the streetcar tracks. There are 2 options here, one would leave the track, and simply make the southern section TTC only , no cars allowed.

But my preference would be to move the SB track from Vaughan to Bathurst.

This block will be coming up for development sooner than later I would think and there's a chance to reconceptualize the streetscape, the street widths and really improve the public realm here.
 
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the piece of "art" installed at Bathurst south of St. Clair about 5-6 years ago received mixed reviews when it opened. It hasn't gotten any prettier as it aged. Was curious if anyone knows what the future of this monstrosity is. At what point does the neighborhood say it makes the city less attractive and move on from it. I'm sure we can all come up with inexpensive ideas that are much nicer than this (e.g. parkette that has benches and a tree).View attachment 533891
I think it's an instance where a lack of a good public realm negates any qualities of the artwork.

Instead of being contemplative, it has to compete with the rest of the streetscape (i.e. power and light poles not giving it any room and cluttering up its silhouette) and ends up looking not so different from industrial leftovers in a brownfield.
 
I think it's an instance where a lack of a good public realm negates any qualities of the artwork.

Instead of being contemplative, it has to compete with the rest of the streetscape (i.e. power and light poles not giving it any room and cluttering up its silhouette) and ends up looking not so different from industrial leftovers in a brownfield.
i think everyone can agree it's not attractive. to say the least. the question, what does the city do about it? just leave it there and watch it rust and get even uglier?
 
i think everyone can agree it's not attractive. to say the least. the question, what does the city do about it? just leave it there and watch it rust and get even uglier?
Though it is not to my taste either, it appears to be being taken care of - no obvious rusting on the photo. The 'garden' however ......
 
I dunno...somehow everything in Montreal just looks miles better than even the new improvements Toronto is doing. Maybe it's just that Montreal has so much experience in this area.
 
I dunno...somehow everything in Montreal just looks miles better than even the new improvements Toronto is doing. Maybe it's just that Montreal has so much experience in this area.
Yes, but no, not always. I spend time in Montreal every month,and I will agree that Montreal can do some really good things, and look really good as well doing so with imagination, flair and panache not always seen in the more regimented and regulated T.O. And then not. There are all sorts of areas, corners, streets, parks and shopping venues in Montreal that rival T.O. for general shabbiness and lack upkeep, maintenance, investment and energy. And the never ending misuse of the paint spray can. Both of these cities are suffering from lack of investment, reflected in their operating budgets, and the shared need for services that higher levels of government seem fit to downplay.
 

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