Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

A Message from the Future

leave a comment »

You might recall that Guy Duancy wrote a book on the same theme. This is mainly aimed at the US readers who need to know about the Green New Deal. Everything under the line is simply cut and paste.


 

New York, NY – April 17, 2019 – “A Message from the Future with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez,” the 7-minute animated film presented by The Intercept and Naomi Klein, featuring art by award-winning illustrator Molly Crabapple (“Brothers of the Gun”), has amassed over 2 million views across all video platforms in 8 (eight) hours.

This hybrid of fact, fiction, and art is set at a time when the Green New Deal is a reality and human beings have come together to tackle the global climate crisis in a fair and equitable manner. In this alternative (but entirely possible) timeline, the 2020 presidential election jumpstarted the “Decade of the Green New Deal” and a flurry of legislation kicked off a series of social and ecological transformations to save the planet.

YouTube: https://interc.pt/GreenNewDeal

Twitter: https://t.co/PywCR0jPUl

The Intercept: https://interc.pt/NaomiKleinGND

“It is such a pleasure to collaborate with this team of artists and filmmakers, who are helping us imagine the beautiful, safe and inclusive future that so many tell us is impossible,” said Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. “Before we can win a Green New Deal,” she added, “we need to be able to close our eyes and imagine it. We can be whatever we have the courage to see.”

A Message from the Future with Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez” will also screen during Sunrise Movement’s “Road to the Green New Deal” tour, with eight major national stops and over 100 town halls across America. The tour begins Thursday, April 18, with a gathering at The Strand Theater in Boston, Massachusetts. For additional info on the Sunrise tour, visit their official site.

Written by Stephen Rees

April 17, 2019 at 5:43 pm

Notre Dame

with 2 comments

The fire was terrible. It was unintentional. It was the result of efforts to refurbish the cathedral. It has not been well looked after for a variety of reasons. I happen to have some pictures which include the ceiling and the roof – which is the greatest loss – and the spire. One thing I am sure of, it will be replaced, and it will look magnificent.

Notre Dame

Gothic excellence

Choir

Ceiling

Notre Dame from the Pantheon colonnade

Notre Dame

POSTSCRIPT

Shortly after posting this I came across this post by CityLab on Instagram

The extent of the fire damage at Notre-Dame Cathedral is still uncertain, but the good news is that the structure has survived. That’s because Gothic architecture is strong stuff, built to withstand even an inferno. In Notre-Dame, as in other Gothic cathedrals, the ceiling is a stone vault, and above that is the equivalent of a wooden attic space. Though the wooden roof is vulnerable to burning, the stone structure itself is fundamentally fireproof.
Over a long history of wars, accidents, and natural disasters, fires have claimed many of Europe’s cathedrals over the centuries, and some have been rebuilt with great success. While the damage is sure to be extensive, governments and institutions around the world will be standing by to help, @nylandmarks president Peg Breen told CityLab. Read more about how the cathedral’s architecture may have saved it

Written by Stephen Rees

April 16, 2019 at 9:56 am

Buses: you can’t do that here!

leave a comment »

This is a screenshot of my tweetdeck right now.

Increasing bus service has worked in Seattle and Auckland but could not possibly work in West Vancouver. Of course, they might change their minds tonight, in which case this post will vanish.

Screen Shot 2019-04-15 at 7.01.21 PM

So I looked her up on Twitter and found this tweet which, at 09:13 on Tuesday April 16 seems to be her most recent one

Screen Shot 2019-04-16 at 9.12.54 AM

But some people will prefer this version “West Van says no to B-Line past Park Royal” North Shore News 

Written by Stephen Rees

April 15, 2019 at 7:04 pm

Posted in Transportation

Opinion: It’s time to give the West Coast Express the big expansion it deserves

leave a comment »

West Coast Express (BCVX) 906

The long title comes from an article published yesterday in the Daily Hive written by Ian Ius. He has had a brainwave which had me wondering why no-one seems to have proposed this before – as far as I know. The short version is that while WCE would be hard to expand along the Burrard Inlet, it would be possible to run an all day, every day, service from Coquitlam out to the Valley with the Evergreen Line providing connections to the rest of the system. It is worth your time to click on that link and read the whole thing.

I thought at first I would not have much to add, and I apologise if you have read some of this from me before. I make no claims to originality here.

I have always advocated a better transit link between Surrey City Centre and Coquitlam Centre. Yes you can do that by SkyTrain now, but with two transfers and an indirect route. I think a better service could be provided by a nonstop direct bus on Highways 1 and 7 over the Port Mann Bridge. The new low floor express buses would do nicely.

18468

Photo by UltraBuizel 10 on flickr Creative Commons Licensed

The other thought that occurs to me is that there is a very good example of the integration of heavy rail passenger service with freight in Chicago where the Metra Services run on several Class 1 railroad lines. The most intensive freight plus Metra route is the BNSF “Race Track” out to Aurora Illinois from Union Station. This has multiple tracks and a very advanced signalling system. Sadly, Metra service on Sundays is only once every two hours, but there are plenty of freight trains that pass in that time.

METRA 194

There is also a commuter rail system the serves the Montreal metropolitan region, some of it electrified. I have yet to experience that. Which, by the way, is also the case with West Coast Express. Not that I haven’t tried, but I just couldn’t come up with a way to make it work when I was travelling out to Abbotsford for evening meetings.

 

Written by Stephen Rees

April 5, 2019 at 11:30 am

Oakridge Development

leave a comment »

Walking through the mall this morning I passed this illustration of what the new mall development will look like. I then crossed the 41st Ave and Cambie Street intersection to take a photo from the diagonally opposite corner for comparison purposes. You will note that the rendering adopts a much higher viewpoint than street level.

fullsizeoutput_292bfullsizeoutput_292aThe rendering also eliminates the overhead wires for the 41st Avenue trolleybus.

Preparatory work for the development is already underway, hence the traffic control officer and the bollards in the street.

If you also follow me on flickr you will already have seen the following photos there. The exhibit is still open in the mall as part of the marketing effort for the condos.

Oakridge Exhibit

Oakridge Exhibit

Oakridge Exhibit

Note the brewing vessels top centre.

Oakridge Exhibit

The view below shows the proposed brewpub

Oakridge Exhibit

This will not be like the usual mall food court. No franchisees allowed. Guest chefs from all over will be showing off their skills here.

Oakridge Exhibit

This is a sample of the Green Walls that will be a feature of the new buildings.

Oakridge Exhibit

Written by Stephen Rees

March 29, 2019 at 1:48 pm

Transit Line Usage

leave a comment »

Translink usage diagram

This diagram was created by Mark Pope who posted it to the Facebook group Expo Line Memes for TransLink Oriented Teens (ELMTOT). He has given me permission to use it here and he has also provided links to the original data and his spreadsheet.

This is a very good way to understand how the transit system works, and changes one’s perception of the relative importance of the lines. I think the thing that surprised me the most was the difference between the 99 B-Line and the Millennium Line – and also how ridership quickly tapers off on the west side of Vancouver.

West Coast Express is not shown but had 2.3 million boardings in 2017 compared to 105m on the combined Expo and Millennium Lines.

I am not going to close comments, but I think it would be a good idea, if there are any questions, to ask them on the Facebook group rather than here.

Written by Stephen Rees

March 23, 2019 at 12:25 pm

Posted in Transportation

Equinox Full Moon Spring

leave a comment »

fullsizeoutput_291e

We are really lucky right now that the spell of dry weather is also accompanied by clear skies. We simply miss out on a lot of widely publicised astronomical events due to cloud cover. Not this week.

Sakura - blossom

The warmth has also started the blossom/pollen season
Sakura - blossom

Kits Beach spring break panorama

This stitched panorama is huge: it is worth clicking on the image to see it at the original size. It being spring break there were quite a few people out at Kits Beach.

Large seal

And the seals at Jericho

 

 

 

Written by Stephen Rees

March 20, 2019 at 5:44 pm

Posted in photography