Canada

Mural Search – South Main

The mural search took a huge detour for lunch. I found myself at the Starbucks at the very edge of the Olympic Village. All I had was my iPhone and the Starbucks app to pay for food and drink. At least I had something.

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I also decided to open up my Pokemon GO to see if anything was going on in the hood. That’s when I realized there was a blooming triple-lure spot. Couldn’t help but plunk myself in the Bird Plaza for about an hour to rest up my feet before setting out for more murals 😛

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Montreal’s rapid transit set to double

I just saw a very impressive plan to expand Montreal’s rapid transit system. The new elevated rapid transit line, similar to Vancouver’s SkyTrain design will almost double the rapid transit available in the Montreal region. In fact, it will likely become North America’s longest elevated rail line when it comes to fruition.

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Surrey LRT – Support and Funding

The conversation for expanded fixed rail transit in Surrey continues to roll along. Metro Vancouver’s second largest municipality by population and largest by land area is still trying to push forward after the failed transit plebiscitie/referendum of 2015.

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A few things have happened in the past year that may help Surrey get its long-desired LRT.

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Starchitect lands in Canada – Bjarke Ingels

Some of you may know about Vancouver House going up along Howe Street at Pacific Boulevard and right up against the Howe Street onramp for the Granville Street Bridge. It is Danish starchitect, Bjarke Ingels‘, huge stamp on the Vancouver skyline.

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The giant tower will contort it’s frame over part of the bridge in architectural yoga pose in the sky. It’s an impressive looking building in the computer renditions. It may be just as promising when it is finished.

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Toronto’s Transit Rollercoaster

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Ever since I lived in Toronto back in 2003, I’ve always kept an eye on transit developments in the GTA. In the early days, there was David Miller’s Transit City, which promised to criss-cross the city with light rail. Then Rob Ford rumbled into office and promised the gravy train along with the light rail trains. Instead, Rob Ford planned on fewer lines, but with all of them being heavy rail subway lines. Then most recently came John Tory and his SmartTrack which was a vaunted “surface subway” that would start moving Toronto in a new way.

Three mayors with three very different visions over the past 13 years. It’s enough to make any transit follower’s eyes spin.

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Vancouver-Victoria Passenger Ferry – Will it work this time?

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image from Vancity Buzz

A Vancouver to Victoria passenger ferry is not a new idea. It’s been tried before in the past in various forms. Will it succeed this time? The new ferry is aimed at tourists and not so much at the local market. Maybe that will be the key to attracting riders.

Here’s a look at some past Vancouver to Vancouver Island passenger ferries.

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The New Little Mountain

The New Little Mountain project has been on my blogging backburner for at least a couple of months. There’s a lot of changes afoot in the neighbourhood at East 37th Avenue and Ontario Street.

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Little Mountain homes boarded up (July 2009)

Originally, the whole plot of land was social housing. It was the first social housing project of its kind. I personally know of a couple of people who grew up in what they affectionately called  “The Projects.”

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A Long 11-week Federal Election Campaign – Good or Bad?

I’m not entirely sure I like the idea of a long 11-week federal election campaign. Voting day is this year is October 19, 2015. If memory serves me correctly, this is the first federal election under the fixed-election date era. Prime Minister Stephen Harper just asked the Governor-General to dissolve Parliament on Sunday, August 2; thus, triggering the election campaign preceding the fixed election date.

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Powell Street Festival 2015

Matsuri is the Japanese word for festival. Summer is the season for matsuri in Japan. It’s also this past long weekend that the 39th Annual Powell Street Festival was held down in Japantown. I missed last year’s edition that was kept out of the usual Oppenheimer Park location by a tent city. This year, the festival was back into full gear in the park.

Here’s a few photos from this year’s Powell Street Festival.

 

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