Geoff Meggs on the Olympic Village – 73% occupied; laundry/dry cleaning coming soon; Village Kitchen spring 2012; London Drugs and Urban Fare summer 2012; Salt Building no tenant.
Spacing’s New Issue Arrives – all about urban farming and food. I’ll wait until we’re done our elimination diet before I read it.
Adbusters’ Kalle Lasn Talks About OccupyWallStreet – interesting interview about how Occupy Wall Street started.
Occupy Vancouver – coming October 15th. Thousands of people expected. They even RSVP’d on Facebook.
Our Very Own Highline – an intriguing proposal to turn the the old Port Mann bridge into a park instead of spending $50 – $100 million to demolish it. Did you know that the new Port Mann is set to cost $3.3 billion. And yet some people are up in arms about Translink’s extra 2 cent tax on gas, which will raise only $40 million a year.
Image by freestyle
Ahead of G20 summit, report says: promote sustainability over growth (Guardian)
The pursuit of economic growth was one of the root causes of the financial crisis, and governments should respond to the recession by abandoning growth at all costs in favour of a more sustainable, greener system.
It has bothered me for a long time that our economic system is built on growth. We’ve relied too long on new construction and resource extraction to drive the Canadian economy. How long can that last? It’s certainly not sustainable. We’re seeing the consequences right now in the housing and stock markets. It’s a pyramid scheme that is crashing down around us.
The system is broken, and governments are just throwing money at it. Instead we should be focusing on strategic investments that will lead to a greener and sustainable future. Growth shouldn’t be the measure we judge our success on. We should be more focused on health and happiness.
Want One Port Mann Bridge, or a Light Rail Metropolis? (The Tyee)
What other transportation infrastructure, they asked, could we instead have for $3.1 billion?
By the time Prof. Patrick Condon and researcher Kari Dow at the UBC Design Centre for Sustainability finished punching in the numbers and mapped their results, they produced a startling alternative vision. For the same money, concluded the team, the government could finance a 200-kilometre light rail network that would place a modern, European-style tram within a 10-minute walk for 80 per cent of all residents in Surrey, White Rock, Langley and the Scott Road district of Delta, while providing a rail connection from Surrey to the new Evergreen line and connecting Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge into the regional rail system.
It all comes down to priorities. $3.1 billion is a lot of money. It could be used to build a 10-lane bridge that will lead car-dependent sprawl and increased pollution. Or it could be used to buy 200 km of light rail, that would make it more efficient to move around and create more livable communities.
95-year old “Fierce Flossy the Ninja” excels at javelin by ensuring her competition dies before she does. – CBC
“The launch of Toronto’s new “scramble” intersection – which stops motorized traffic and allows pedestrians to cross in all directions, even diagonally – felt a bit like a street party yesterday as thousands enjoyed a certain frisson from cutting across the middle of Yonge and Dundas Streets while cars had to wait.” – Globe and Mail
“It’s time the levees broke on Vancouver’s ownership myth. A hard look at the numbers shows renting is vastly superior to the choice of becoming a homeowner.” – Condy Hype
June is bike month, so get ready for a long list of cycling-related links and ranks.
I hope everyone participated in Bike to Work Day and the Commuter Challenge – both of which are now over. Sorry for not posting earlier.
Waterloo – Bike Sharing program on the way (like Velib in Paris).
Winnipeg – Cyclists fight for space
Vancouver – Bike Survey – tell the city what you think.
And for everyone’s enjoyment, Stupider Bike Lanes
Bike Lanes on the Burrard Bridge
CBC is going to put one of their shows on BitTorrent. How cool is that? The Next Great Prime Minister will be available to download, DRM-free, on March 24, the day after it airs. I’m pressed.
The only time I’ll agree with the Vatican – polluting is a sin. Not to sound too reasonable, they also say birth control is a sin too.
I’m not sure how it happened, but at work I’ve become the keeper of the timezones and tasked with making all the changes Daylight Savings Time – one of my least favourite tasks. And you’d be surprised how often countries tinker with the dates. As such, I’ve developed a real hate for DST – I’ve always failed to see how it’s supposed to save electricity. Well, it turns out it doesn’t – Daylight Saving Wastes Energy (WSJ).
Those wacky social conservatives in Ottawa are at it again. This time trying to censor films they find “offensive” – which I’m sure is a lot of them. Films like Young People Fucking, which I haven’t seen yet but was highly recommended and I’m hoping to see it soon.
Light exercise boosts energy levels – one more reason to bike to work.
Houses are really, REALLY unaffordable, especially in Vancouver. I’m still hoping the housing market crash is on the way.
Just in case I needed one more reason to be vegetarian: US Recalls Beef. Warning: The video is pretty disturbing.
Even Nature agrees, the Conservative government ignores science.
The next president of the USA (either Obama or Clinton) wants to re-open NAFTA to include “tougher enforcement of labour and environmental standards”. Sounds like a great idea to me. However, our government is worried – probably because labour standards and environmental protection are bad for business.
I’m not sure how well ZipCar is doing here in Vancouver, but its members in the US don’t sound too impressed. Just read the comments people are posting on this Worldchanging article: Saving Zipcar. I’m happy to report that car sharing program I’m a member of, Co-operative Auto Network has none of those problems.
The Wall Street Journal has an interesting article about the education system in Finland. “High-school students here rarely get more than a half-hour of homework a night. They have no school uniforms, no honor societies, no valedictorians, no tardy bells and no classes for the gifted. There is little standardized testing, few parents agonize over college and kids don’t start school until age 7.” – crazy!
Google plans on giving homeless people in San Francisco free phone numbers and voicemail. An interesting solution to the Catch 22 most homeless people have – no phone number + no address = no job applying for jobs.
Google is awesome. But wouldn’t it be awesomer with a Bike There option in Google Maps?
And another inspirational Obama video from will.i.am. It gives me the chills.