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    Montreal, P.Q.

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  1. Tranzit

    New route 515

    An "appropriate number"--whatever that is supposed to infer--was probably deliberately not chosen because this new route is unlikely to survive for very long anyway, unless the STM promotes it more visibly and enthusiastically. As such, a forgettable number like 515 would not be "missed". It's too bad the tourist trade has dropped off substantially due mostly to the U.S. dollar exchange rate, otherwise patronage would be better than it currently is. There are definitely fewer people down there this year.
  2. If I'd blinked, I'd have missed the place! Place Guillaume-Couture, eh! It would have been nice if the city had taken public consultations to choose a name more representative of this district, of course, but I suppose it could have been worse, when you consider how they had to embarrassingly backtrack on Nelson and Winnie Mandela Park--the "Winnie" name having later been filed completely off of the park's metal plaque! That afterthought was so obvious, you'd think they have simply replaced the plaque completely...but no! Yes, I am familiar with the spot to which you refer (if not having paid attention to the name they arbitrarily christened it with!), as it was where the original tram line curved east and then north onto the private right-of-way just west of Earnscliffe. That oddball junction has seen many alterations over the years. A good enough spot for a future Metro station, I suppose, yet only one of many possibilities. More than likely they'd have expropriated one of the nearby gas stations or other commercial establishments instead, but, needless to say, all such speculation is academic at this stage of the game. The Orange Line's eventual course was logical and reasonable, however, considering the density of apartment buildings it serves, even going so far as to recognize that same higher population density as it swerved further east of Decarie from Snowdon Metro and then up through the Cote des Neiges district, Plamondon, etc., and then back west again at Namur. But rather than spend our time speculating on where the Blue Line will eventually run, it would be preferable to be more demanding to our local politicians like Mr. Rotrand who, although like a chameleon he has somehow managed to maintain his position in city hall through several administrations, he has largely been ineffective; unable or unwilling to stand up for his constituents when it comes to Metro extensions in his district. He should do his job or get out, in my opinion. I remember in the archives seeing a 1940s newspaper cartoon showing a man looking down an open manhole in the street. On the sidewalk are two other men watching him, one of which says sarcastically: "He's looking for the Metro."
  3. What is perceived to be true is often more important than what is true... Although interesting points have been made in the preceding analyses, one does not have to be a rocket scientist to look at a map of Montreal to see which districts have sufficient population density to require Metro service. Notice I use the word require not deserve. From the very beginning, it was perhaps impossible to separate the political aspects of such a major project as the Metro from the geographical, but setting all of that aside, it is a matter of history that neighbourhoods change their demographic from generation to generation, so it matters little who is going to need and use that Metro line today, as it will most certainly change in the years ahead. Is one to conclude that because the traditional perception may have been that NDG is "mostly English" or that "Lachine is mostly French" at any given point in time will forever set in stone who is rightfully "entitled" to a Metro line? Does it matter what language they speak, anyway? Won't their fares still count in the city coffers? Their taxes certainly do! Mayor Tremblay's squabbles with Westmount, Dorval, and Beaconsfield, etc., should have absolutely nothing to do with residents of NDG and Lachine, anyway. Historically as well, Montreal has predominantly been a city of renters with many districts consisting of apartment buildings--just as in NDG and Lachine--tenants who would without question take advantage of a Metro service rather than drive their own cars--a prospect which has even more recently become prohibitive, in any case. The tentative Metro plan of 1944, by the way, did indeed propose a line running under Ste. Catherine St. and further westward and closer to NDG-- not swerving south into Verdun and LaSalle. Of course, the political climate was quite different then! None of this "us versus them" mentality. In the years ahead, one can only hope that influential members of the city council who are supposed to represent the interests of NDG, VSP, and Lachine will make their voices heard loud and clear, otherwise we can only expect more of the same indifference. No reasonably-populated district ought to be denied a Metro line, whether it be in the north, south, east or the west. What irks me is that the west continues to be bypassed every time some so-called "Master Plan" is announced. There always seems to be that inevitable undercurrent of, "'No, no, it's needed more in the east...no, wait, let's do Laval...gee, let's make an extension to Pie IX.", etc. One cannot see this attitude as anything less than petty politicking. How do you think the residents of Ville d'Anjou would feel if they were to be ignored for the next 20 years? I say: be fair and even-handed when it comes to Metro extensions. Do not continually ignore one area over another. Erratum: The reference by one forum member to Guillaume-Couture being associated in someway with Cote St. Luc has to be in error. My street directories show two streets with that name and they are nowhere near Cote St. Luc.
  4. Judging by the exhaust smoke there, it doesn't appear to be in good mechanical shape That's because they fill the fuel tanks with low-grade rum.
  5. One advantage a CAM card does have over OPUS-type smart cards is during circumstances when you approach the bus you wish to board and the driver is taking a break outside smoking a cigarette or talking on his/her cellphone, etc. All you need do is flash your CAM card in front of them and the driver generally nods permission for you to board, whereas if you flash your OPUS card, the driver has no way of knowing if that card even has any fares on it. Only the validator knows for sure, of course, which would then require the driver to watch you place it against the validator for verification. I can therefore see circumstances whereby drivers would be told by management not to allow anyone on board unless they themselves were there to see you validate your OPUS card.
  6. I suppose it's even possible there was a rat, mice, and/or insect (read cockroach!) problem in the tunnels they were too embarrased to admit--or maybe too many water leaks. Such things do happen in dark, dank places.
  7. We do not tell busfans to commit theft and vandalism here. This isn't amusing or fun for the real world. Don't quote this post, don't reply back. Um...kindly don't tell me what to do, and quit trying to throw your weight around. My opinions about vandalism are well known in this forum, therefore I do not need your lectures, my dear lad. I could so easily scan the back pages of this site to find "controversial" posts that you have made, but I have better things to do. Time to move on.
  8. Tranzit

    Fantasy thread

    Here's a solution which has been used in different countries: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/cumbria/6983923.stm
  9. The 24 is not slated for artic service, and it will not get artics unless you start working for the STM, or someone makes a big mistake in the dispatching! If we follow your logic, put them on the bloody 15!!! No, since the 15 is on a narrow and congested street (Ste. Catherine Street for those out-of-towners), that would not be wise. That is why it needs to be used on wider, straighter streets with few sharp turns. Rest assured the first major complaints about our future artics will be due to instances where they have blocked traffic. A visit to other cities' forums will reveal their similar experiences.
  10. Not so "random". A future sociological study will surely be made to reveal the fact that a certain segment of modern youth has been under the influence of a specific form of compulsive behaviour which drives them to "leave their mark" in these types of vandalism. One can only wonder what they will think of themselves when they finally grow up and look back at what they did. Let's hope that guilt will cause them to make some form of restitition and/or come clean with what they have done. Somehow, I can't imagine them condoning such behavior in their own offspring !
  11. One thing that isn't yet clear (and which I will have to find out) is what happens if your OPUS card has a few tickets left on it, but you want to upgrade it to a monthly CAM? Using your credit or debit card, would the vending machine deduct the value of any remaining tickets, re-program the card for a month, and then send the balance of coins jingling into your waiting hands, thus rounding out the proper amount, or must you have an "empty" OPUS card with no remaining single fares on it before you can reload it for a CAM's worth? Curiouser and curiouser.
  12. Minutes later, I saw 12-046 across from the Montreal Science Centre. Its display was set to Hors Service. My brother and I joked that the driver wanted to drive if off the quay and into the St. Lawrence! Hey, that would make a great video on YouTube! Next time, why not wait your chance to jump on board and send into the drink with a nice big "kersplash"! That reminds me: recently I caught the end of some TV report or promo for some movie that showed a New Look being driven right off a pier into the water somewhere!
  13. Tranzit

    New route 515

    I really can't get over how anyone can get away with running such a horrible system! Now, now...calm down. I presume you have already purchased your one-way train ticket to Toronto? To be sure, we'll be looking forward to your upcoming critiques of the TTC. Happy Canada Day!
  14. Tranzit

    Fantasy thread

    Even a child could see the obvious connections which should be made, such as the 55/53, etc. Fact is, the city has been tinkering with many routes for years, and this is possibly due to union demands, "route length fatigue", etc., who knows. Lots of things we are never told and "insider issues" they don't want us to know about, I'm sure. The 17, for example, has been changed too often, in my opinion. There's nothing wrong with it paralleling the Orange Line. After all, doesn't the 15 parallel much of the Green Line? Besides, some passengers (especially the elderly) find it easier to stay on the surface rather than deal with all of those stairs when escalators break down. The 17 used to run all the way to Cartierville, of course, but somebody decided to split it with the 64. Gee, thanks! Prior to this, the original route 48 continued from where the 17 terminated at Garland and went all the way to Place d'Armes. I must have used it a thousand times! Now, however, the 17 only goes as far as St. Henri Metro--arguably the grubbiest place in the city where nobody in his or her right mind would dare to hang around at night. And just what is the attraction for kids to loiter around Metro stations anyway? What is the big deal? Is it just a carry-over from winter where everyone wants to keep warm indoors? Are they waiting for their drug connection? Kryste, I see kids hanging out at Vendome on the weekend. Hey, school's out, remember? Do they intentionally come from all over the city just to stand around, blocking entrances, and generally making a nuisance of themselves? Okay, when we were teenagers, we used to hang out in the park. Lots of room, nobody would bother us and we didn't bother anybody (well, for the most part!). But standing around smelly, grungy Metro stations with their pervasive stench of hot Michelin tires and bus fumes? C'mon! Hey, kids: get a life!
  15. Two (or more!) busses showing up at a stop after waiting ages, is nothing new, of course. I remember this happening back in the 50s and no doubt it goes back to the early days of the trams as well. Indeed, I recall seeing a cartoon in some American magazine deriding the practice. Get ready to see two or more artics pull up to your stop in a neighbourhood near you someday soon! Is there an STM rule which forbids a bus of the same route number scheduled behind the one in front to pass it? I've often seen this happen, of course, but I'm not sure if this is a driver's option or a tolerated permission. Leap-frogging is common as well. Needless to say, such a "no pass" rule exists in other cities. * * * Okay, while I'm here: what's with the mess at Agrignon? The place looks like Miron Quarry all dug up and fenced off. An ugly, unpleasant place that definitely needs an upgrade! And then there's the grungy-looking Lionel-Ghoulx Metro with its fenced-in mountain of dirt that seems to have been there since last year, and the crummy-looking field next to St. Jacques. Arrgh! Can't the city find the funds to landscape this crappy public place with some new turf, trees, and more benches. Never enough benches in our parks! Why? Is it any wonder Oscar Peterson emigrated to Toronto? Hell, I'd be ashamed to have this Metro station named after me.
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