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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Jane’s Walks Explore ‘Hoods on the Brink of Big Changes

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As promised, here’s a preview of some more Jane’s walks set to go this weekend, May 2nd and 3rd. These ones look at neighbourhoods that are on the brink of big changes, many of which have been discussed and debated here on Spacing Montreal.

The walks are inspired by Jane Jacob’s advice: “No one can find what will work for our cities by looking at … suburban garden cities, manipulating scale models, or inventing dream cities. You’ve got to get out and walk.”

So here’s a chance to walk the talk.

All the details about meeting places, meeting times and reservations are on the Jane’s Walk website.

The Seville Theatre block on Ste-Catherine and Lambert-Closse

Shaughnessy Village, anchored between the CCA and the AMC is about to get an injection of life – or at least caffeine – with the Ilot Seville project, which replaces the crumbling Seville Theatre block with a “Seville Café” topped by 1500 student housing units. Participants will walk along Baile, Tupper, Rene-Levesque and Ste-Catherine Street, observe the existing values and contemplate the potential values in our urban setting.

The end of St Viateur … for now. Photo from Imagine (le) Mile End

Saint Viateur E. (Mile End): From Rowhouses to Megastructures will focus on the Mile End that is about to undergo some major development projects. In addition to allowing participants to discover the evolution, over the past 150 years, of the area’s urban vernacular landscape, it will highlight the results of the recent citizen consultation initiative organized by the Mile End Citizens’ Committee (in French and English).

Puis, en français il ya a deux promenades à Pointe-St-Charles : Un lieu comme il n’y en a pas deux. Ce quartier dynamique sera bientôt touché par le redéveloppement des cours CN. Les organisateurs écrivent:

“Pointe-Saint-Charles, souvent comparé à un petit village Gaulois, possède un patrimoine architectural important, mais, nous aimerions surtout partager avec vous son patrimoine immatériel, cet esprit de village qui fait que l’on salue les gens que l’on croise souvent, on jacasse dans l’autobus matin et soir, on se précipite aux barricades dès que l’intégrité de son tout est menacée et tant d’autres choses qui font qu’il y fait bon vivre. Nous verrons ce petit bijou bien caché qu’est la Maison Saint-Gabriel. Enfin, nous nous jetterons un œil sur ces ateliers géants qui ont nourri bien des familles et le futur de ce petit bout du monde.”

Finally, Exploring Milton-Parc’s past and present addresses a more subtle agent of neighbourhood change. Organized by the Anti-Gentrification Project, a working group of QPIRG-McGill, the walk will examine the role of McGill University in the community, through the large numbers of student residents living in the area and the acquisition of buildings for residences and offices.

The Anti-Gentrification Project works with students who may be seeking their first Montreal apartment and equips them with knowledge of tenant rights (to prevent inflated rents and degrading buildings), and building community links.


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