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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Spacing Saturday: Bixi Bailout, Walkability and the Fort York Bridge

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Spacing Saturday highlights posts from across Spacing’s blog network in Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, and the Atlantic region.

As Toronto and Ottawa roll out their new Bixi bike sharing programs this Spring, in the birthplace of Bixi there is controversy surrounding a municipal bailout for the organization behind the bike share. Alanah Heffez outlines the debate around the bailout and puts the question of whether or not it was a good idea to Spacing readers.

Joel Thibert takes a fascinating look into Urban Agriculture based on the premise that while coverage of the issue may be increasing, the actual phenomenon is far more than just a fad. Through this discussion Thibert examines the nature of what Urban Agriculture is really about; ultimately concluding that it may not be about cultivating produce but about cultivating gardeners.

Section 37 of the Ontario Planning Act allows municipalities to require that a developer provide community benefits in exchange for rezoning to allow larger buildings, yet few cities take advantage. With the City of Ottawa studying the issue, Jay Baltz makes a compelling case about why aggressively pursuing section37 benefits is absolutely necessary.

As part of the Walkspace series Eric Darwin chronicles the tale of a proposed multipurpose trail along the O-Train corridor. While construction has begun on an underpass, other parts of the trail, and some local landmarks along its route remain in bureaucratic limbo.

Spacing highlights two fascinating panel discussions taking place in Halifax which aim to study the interaction of art and technology in the public realm. The Tracing the City symposium looks at how public space challenges the private nature of experiencing art while the Cineflux Symposium examines the issues around the ‘digital turn’ in contemporary society.

Atlantic Canada is a beautiful place and the Atlantic Snapshots series continued to capture that beauty in unique ways with several interesting new posts this week.

The Fort York pedestrian and cycle bridge was a hot topic in Toronto this week and two posts on Spacing aim to capture the essence of the issue. As part of the Headspace series Luca de Franco interviews activist Richard Douglas to get his take on why the bridge should be saved. Shawn Micallef takes a step back to see what the debate says about Toronto itself.

Dylan Reid highlights the Walkability Slide Show that has come out of this month’s Jane’s Walks and is being shown at the Urbanspace Gallery. The show highlights walkability issues in Toronto’s low income tower neighbourhoods and the effect this has the lives of residents.

Photograph by: philosophygeek


One comment

  1. WOW that is one massive bailout considering that kind of money could build 5 community centers. I love bikes but loosing over 15 million a year? You could buy everybody a bike in Montreal who wants one for that kind of money.