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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Mid-week news overview

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Giant PuppetBillboards are here to stay, city says. (A proposed bylaw in provincial capital would ban the signs from its territory.)

Opération économie d’essence à la police | New wheels are causing a stir: article includes a Youtube link to show the cops’ new T3 Motions in action.

Gay Village is in full party mode – and loving it. This story doesn’t mention the objections made by emergency workers earlier in the summer about access, but it does tell us that business owners are happy.

Chauffeur de bus à 100 000$ | Jusqu’à 100 000$ par année pour des chauffeurs de la STM. This seems a little random.

Invasion de maringouins. I actually just noticed the other day that I was passing clouds of mosquitoes where I never have before.

Échangeur Turcot: la bretelle d’accès rouverte.

Kingston, PQ | À Montréal depuis les années 40: Jamaica Day is this Saturday. Also this weekend (just on the islands!): Montreal International Dragon Boat Race Festival, Festival Turc/Turkish Festival, and Fête de la Colombie.

Memphrémagog Lake itch blamed on snails

Photo from the closing Just For Laughs parade by rpujolle on Flickr.


Igor Kenk, owner of The Bicycle Clinic on Queen St. West in Toronto, was arrested last week for bike theft. He was busted by undercover cops, who witnessed him instruct a man with boltcutters to cut two bikes off a nearby post and bring them into his shop. 150 bikes were later removed from his shop and more from nearby garages, for an estimated total of between 1350-1650 bikes.

Igor is a notorious figure in Toronto’s cycling community. His is the first name mentioned when a bicycle is stolen: “You should go down to Igor’s and see if it’s there.” 220 of the bikes have been available for viewing, and if you could prove a bike is yours the cops would return it to you. The rest of the bikes are now being logged and sorted by serial number and make, and police expect them to be ready to view on the weekend.

Bike theft is such a huge problem that most people I know expect that their bike will eventually be stolen; it’s a matter of when, not if. Every day I go outside and my bike is still where I left it the night before, I feel lucky. So to me, this bust feels like a small but important victory for cyclists. It’s also sad, because I know so many people in Toronto whose bikes have been stolen, but who have no proof of ownership whatsoever.

So right now, if you haven’t already, go take some photographs of your bike. Write down the serial number, brand, model, and description and store the information somewhere safe. If your bike gets stolen, report it! Most people don’t, because they think it’s such a futile gesture, but reporting theft helps the police get a better idea of what a huge problem this is. And if a local Igor is ever busted, maybe you’ll have a chance of getting your bike back.

Photo by Phill Snel, National Post. (Update March 21 2009 – Photo removed at the request of photographer)


  1. ATTN: Spacing editors and Julie Fournier,
    You have illegally taken my photograph from National Post’s website and posted it on your own. It appears intentional, and violates my copyright and that of National Post. This, as well as e-mail sent to you, serves as notice that it must be removed immediately. Further action may be taken.

  2. This is a funny comment to read when the National Post has been caught publishing two articles from Spacing blogs without permission.

    Almost all newspapers allow photos to be used to accompany articles of the same subject. Except for the Post. Which might explain why no one reads them online.

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