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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Spacing Saturday: The Fourth Wall, Affordable Housing and Montréalophobie

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

An infographic showing a 390 square foot apartment from Jason Pfeifers look at a Vancouver affordable housing program

Affordable housing has become a major election issue in Vancouver. Asking the question of what defines ‘affordable’? Jason Pfeifer explains some fascinating research on one of Vancouver’s current affordable housing programs that allows increased density in exchange for rental units as small as 320 square feet.

As part of the regular Book Review feature, Erick Villagomez discusses ‘Infrastructure: The Book for Everything for the Industrial Landscape’ and how the book is useful and engaging for those interested in the urban landscape to understand the fundamental workings of our infrastructure.

Alanah Heffez questions how the value of eyes on the street is effected in a place where people are often unwilling to speak up. Heffez shares some of her own stories and reflections on speaking up against wrong doing.

Joel Thibert looks at the new policies of the Coalition Avenir Quebec and how they address the long standing problem of montréalophobie in Quebec politics.

Lauren Mercer-Smail launched the first of her new series The Sunday Building Project with sketches and observations drawn from sitting for an hour somewhere on a Montreal Street.

Mike Steinhauer profiles the changing face of Ottawa’s Vanier neighbuorhood. Currently experiencing a construction boom, the area’s unique street pattern compliments its natural features and proximity to downtown.

New mother Erin O’Connell attempts to help mitigate the frustration of those who are bothered by strollers on sidewalks and public transit by sharing her side of the story and her efforts to reduce car use.

Hillary Best began a new series this week complimenting The Fourth Wall, an ongoing exhibit looking at ways to break barriers to civic engagement. This week the series looked at how to teach municipal civics in schools and recognize contributors to public life.

Toronto’s proposed Crosstown LRT project is amongst the largest public works projects currently underway in North America. John Lorinc questions whether the decision to put the entire project underground will result in financial boondoggle.

Photograph by: Jason Pfeifer