Every Saturday, we highlight recent posts from across Spacing’s blog network in Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, and the Atlantic region.
• McGill Urban Geography student Daniel Rotsztain writes a guest column on how the city’s unusually mild winter and the associated rise in all-season cyclists revealed weaknesses in the city’s bike path program. Rotsztain argues that inflexibility of bike lanes in the face of winter conditions and inadequate all-season maintenance worked to create a hazardous environment for the city’s winter riders.
• Spacing’s Jacob Larsen takes us through yet another development in the ongoing battle over the future of Montreal’s Turcot interchange. In response to citizen objections the MTQ has revised the original plan saving 60 dwellings on the rue Cazelaiswill from demolition.
• As part of an ongoing collaboration with the NFB, Spacing Toronto has posted an Oscar-nominated animated short from 1966 entitled “What on Earth!”. The short film, the work of Les Drew and Kaj Pindal, shows Earth through the eyes of visiting extraterrestrials who, confronted with automobiles everywhere they look “understandably assume they are the dominant race”.
• Spacing contributor Marcus Bowman examines a report released by the Clean Air Partnership that challenges the commonly held assumption that bike lanes on arterial roads are bad for business.
• A short colour film, shot by Montreal streetcar operator Lucien Dauphinais in the late 1950s, follows Ottawa’s old streetcars as they navigate the city’s roads and avenues. Check out Spacing Ottawa for this glimpse into the city’s transit past.
• Spacing Ottawa’s Tonya Davidson looks at Canada’s centennial celebrations and the urban legacy left behind. From monuments, to arenas to UFO landing pads, Davidson shows how the country’s extravagant 100-year birthday forever changed the shape of our cities.
• The opening of the The Halifax Urban Greenway’s (HUG), first path has been bittersweet for the city’s cyclist community . As Spacing’s Mark Lasanowski explains, while cyclists have been campaigning for the new multi-modal path for nearly a decade, the presence of signs stating that “cyclists are required to dismount at all intersections” makes it an impractical options for many riders.
• Sparked by a Dalhousie School of Planning conference, titled Play! Spacing’s Alison Creba attempts to unpacks what “play” really means in an urban context. Creba discovers that the concept is not as easily understood as one might think as “..it requires a discussion of the types of activities that engage individuals, and demands that we honestly consider what playful acts look like, what enables them, and how they manifest themselves”.