Some real ped improvements, and some not

It is good to be (still) living, in a time when transportation is finally focusing on people who walk, people who cycle, and not just people who drive. Yet to come, of course, is any concern for the people living … Continue reading Some real ped improvements, and some not

Building LeBetter Flats, part 5, The Isles

The projected build out of Albert and Chaudiere Islands * starts with the material already at hand, ie the existing buildings. The former brick and stone mill buildings will be converted to commercial uses, starting in 2015. These offer the quickest revenue opportunity for the developer, Windmill, and I imagine it is much easier to attract firms rather than condo residents. Particularly hi-tech-y firms which show a propensity to edgy industrial sites in other cities in part due to their often young employee age group and non-conventional self-image. The first buildings to be converted will most likely be on Albert … Continue reading Building LeBetter Flats, part 5, The Isles

Good planning vs legalities

I’ve been a tich occupied recently; along with neighbours we’ve been trying to influence the Preston-Carling secondary plan. Regular readers here will recall our lack of enthusiasm for the way this study was run run over us, To provide a detailed list of suggested improvements would be so long as to bore you to tears. Councillor Holmes has pared down the list to a shorter group of four resolutions, all of which lost at Planning Committee last week. Now I do understand Committee members voting to support the plan produced by their department, according to the marching orders transmitted to … Continue reading Good planning vs legalities

Supping from a poisoned chalice

I have written (too-) much previously about the details in the Preston-Carling and Preston-Gladstone plans. The Preston-Carling documents go to planning committee on Tuesday. I will be there, and speaking. Albeit with great reluctance. The Preston-Carling plan in particular was hijacked from the planning staff by city executive. The biggest and first clue was George Dark and his planning charade. He launched a veritable snowstorm of high rises onto the area. It wasn’t an ordinary planning exercise, so much as a snow job on the community, designed to burry the yokels. Its brazenness taints the “profession” in my eyes. Amongst … Continue reading Supping from a poisoned chalice

Blessed by the Creative Class

  About this time last year I had a brief debate with a minion of a local architect’s firm who was employed by the city’s chief consultant to make recommendations for how many highrises could be stuffed into the Preston-Carling CDP  (no conflict of interest here, no sir-e-e-e). This minion, previously described in this blog as “Spike” thought it was GREAT that the neighbourhood was undergoing renewal, revival, rejuvenation, rebuilding, etc. ad nauseum. Of particular import to him was that firms moving in were the CREATIVE CLASS. High tech firms, planners, and of course, ARCHITECTS. Like his firm, having just … Continue reading Blessed by the Creative Class

I know Porn when I see It

Last week a bunch of us were invitees to a “focus group” held by city contractors “THE PLANNING PARTNERSHIP”, out of Toronto. Modest name that. Fancy multicolour business cards too, with irregular corners. Die cut. Oooooh. The group encompassed a large number of planning professionals. They were slightly outnumbered by the Little Italy community invitees. The meeting started at 6.30 and the presentations    consultations    dialogue presentations went on til 9. It was a sort of slideshow of wonderful looking places. All elsewhere. That’s why it’s planning porn — beautiful but you can’t have it. Drool and be frustrated. … Continue reading I know Porn when I see It