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Old March 29th, 2007, 07:52 AM   #61
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That building behind the platform is where people can wait for their bus in heated or air-conditioned comfort. It's a modern waiting room with seating, and there's a little coffee shop inside there too.
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Old March 29th, 2007, 10:42 AM   #62
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Ah. But are the buses air conditioned?
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Old March 30th, 2007, 07:22 AM   #63
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^ Some of them are!

Here's an update for the Holiday Inn project from today. I took this pic from a big hill in Thompson Park. That's midday traffic on the Trans Canada highway with the new hotel in the background behind all those wires and poles! Soon another large new (and possibly taller) hotel will start to rise beside this one.
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Old March 30th, 2007, 08:12 PM   #64
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Makes me miss Jumbo Gardens. **** it's mess there isn't it? If only downtown was that busy.
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Old March 31st, 2007, 05:39 AM   #65
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Holiday Inn looking good!
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Old March 31st, 2007, 10:28 PM   #66
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I just noticed something while I was updating some Wikipedia articles...

Northwestern Ontario grew in population, and Northeastern Ontario shrank!

We're still a third your size but we grew!!


image hosted on flickr
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Old April 1st, 2007, 04:43 AM   #67
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North Bay and Sudbury grew, but all the towns further North declined.
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Old April 1st, 2007, 05:47 AM   #68
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Thunder Bay is further north and we grew. Kenora District grew by over 2000 people.
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Old April 1st, 2007, 09:19 AM   #69
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I meant the towns within Northeastern Ontario.
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Old April 2nd, 2007, 08:38 AM   #70
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From the Northern Business Journal:

Real estate markets strong

By Liz Cowan

A regional in-migration trend in most Northern Ontario cities is putting some pressure on vacancy rates and boosting housing sales.

“A trend we have been tracking in most of our Northern Ontario cities is the trend towards in-migration,” said Warren Philp, Northern Ontario market analyst with the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation’s Thunder Bay office.

“They are coming from the area around the bigger centres. When I look at the demographic numbers of 2001 and 2006, there is a bit of a turnaround and most of the areas where there are major centres are showing some improvement,” he said.

“I maintain that the movement is within the region and not so much people from Toronto or Western Canada or Quebec flocking into Northern Ontario.”

Real estate markets in the major Northeastern markets have been strong the past two years and this year is expected to be no different.

“You are looking at a record number of sales in a few of our markets,” Philp said.

In Greater Sudbury, the MLS (Multiple Listing System) residential activity reported sales last year of 2,615, up 0.8 from 2005. The average price of a home rose from $134,440 to $150,341.

Al Fex, president of the Sudbury Real Estate Board, said 2006 was a great year.

“The agents are very, very busy,” he said. “There’s a demand for homes in the higher range and strong demand for a home in New Sudbury. In fact, a house and a garage are hard to get right now.”

Fex said it’s a seller’s market right now which does make it tougher on buyers.

“But we did have a long, dry spell. In many cases people are selling their last homes and they are getting the price they should since it has been an investment for them,” Fex said.

The real estate market is a result of a strong economy in the city, he said.

“The papers are full of job postings, the medical school has had an impact and the mining industry is hiring. It’s encouraging for people to live here. Sudbury is a draw for others from Northern Ontario or for others who went south and want to come back,” Fex said.

North Bay has experienced a strong growth in sales and Philp said the number of listings also increased.

“It could be that more folks are recognizing how strong the market is and they are selling to move up or build,” he said.

“North Bay still has the highest average price in Northern Ontario and the market has held up the best over time. There is a lack of reliance on resources and commodities and the economy is more stable and diversified.”

The average price of a home in the city last year was $160,106, up from $146,066 in 2005. Sales for 2006 were 1,446, up 10 per cent from the previous year which posted 1,316 sales.

Dave Wylie, president of the North Bay Real Estate Board, said 2005 and 2006 were banner years.

“At this time year to date (end of February), our sales are up,” he said.

One of the biggest problems in North Bay, he said, is the high cost of building.

“The new homes coming onto the market are either semi custom or custom built and over $300,000. The market isn’t developing affordable new homes. First-time home buyers are getting 40-year-old homes for $160,00 to $165,000,” Wylie said.

In-migration has been a part of Sault Ste. Marie’s strong real estate activity, Philp said.

“There is stability at Algoma Steel, increased diversification of the economy in retail, tourism and call centre side and there has been a lot of positive things happening the past few years,” he said.

“There is more confidence and people have been more active in the housing market to sell, move up or build.”

The average house price in the Sault last year was $101,882 compared to $96,303 in 2005. There were 1,404 sales recorded in 2006 and 1,292 in 2005.

Wayne Spencer, president of the Sault Ste. Marie Real Estate Board, said the market has been increasing at a steady pace over the past few years.

“We did have dry run for awhile but it started to take off. It’s a real turnaround,” he said.

Every type of home is in demand and he doesn’t see the trend changing for 2007.

“We are still the best buy in Northern Ontario for all the big centres as far as Sudbury and North Bay are concerned,” Spencer said.

In Timmins, 2006 statistics indicate a slight drop in population but the local real estate board set a record for sales in 2006. The board takes in an area that stretches from Temiskaming Shores to James Bay.

“The average price is still strong,” Philp said. “It’s a pretty tight, strong and buoyant market.”

In 2006, the average price of a home was $96,736 and there were 1,101 sales. In 2005, the price was $88,224 with 972 sales.

“We have a fair number of people coming into the community, that we are experiencing, and the Victor Project (diamond mine in Attawapiskat) has a big impact and all of mining in general,” said Roberta Toner, president of the Timmins Real Estate Board.

She said areas such as Temiskaming Shores and Kirkland Lake are also doing well with their real estate markets.

“Timmins isn’t like other communities when it comes to real estate,” she said.

“We don’t go through the extreme highs and lows but rather drop a bit or go up a bit. There are no real spikes and that is better for both the buyer and seller.”

“But we have been on the up over the past four years.”

Vacancy rates have also gone down across the Northeast in all major centres and in most towns.

In 2006, Sault Ste. Marie fell from 3.3 per cent to one per cent. Sudbury’s rate was 1.2 per cent last year and North Bay was at 2.4 per cent. Timmins was at 3.8 per cent.

Philp said the prime renting age group is between 18 to 30.

“When you look at what is happening to employment in that age group, it’s a clue to what is happening in the rental side,” he said.

Other factors affecting vacancy rates are post secondary institutions and retirees moving and choosing to rent instead of buying.
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Old April 12th, 2007, 04:59 PM   #71
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From the North Bay Nugget:

Transit terminal rolling to completion; Officials also taking 'big step' by changing routes

Rob Farnholz
Local News - Wednesday, April 11, 2007 @ 08:00

North Bay Transit is getting a facelift it can't wait to show off.

After several months of construction, the new $3.2-million transit terminal is set to open later this month or in early May.

The new terminal will house the transit's head office and boasts a coffee shop, concession stand, ATM machine, customer-service window and public washrooms. Bus passes will also be available for purchase.

"It's very important for the people to have access to our staff if they want to make an inquiry," said acting transit manager Dorothy Carvell. "With our offices so close, they don't have to go far."

Security has also improved and Carvell said she is confident riders will feel safe.

"We'll have state-of-the-art security," she said.
"Cameras will be inside and out, and it will even have glass break motion sensors. With customers being able to wait inside in the lit area, they can feel safer than being alone outside in the dark."

Finishing touches continue to the interior of the facility.

Along with the new terminal, bus schedules are being revamped in an effort to better accommodate passengers. Transit officials have tweaked routes after getting input from drivers and passengers.

"This is a big step," Carvell said. "It's been years since the routes have changed, but traffic has grown and North Bay has grown and we have to grow and change with it."

She said routes have been redesigned while maintaining the ser-vices and territory the buses cover.

Transit will move toward giving drivers 45 minutes to complete routes instead of the current 30 minutes. The college run, for example, will leave the terminal on the hour and half hour, and return 45 minutes later. Some routes will be changed, like Marshall, which will depart at a quarter after and a quarter to the hour.

Other changes include combining the Ski Club and Chippewa buses.

"That's the biggest change," Carvell said of the combined routes. "Instead of going out to the mall, coming back to the terminal, then going out to Ski Club and such, both will be combined into one 45-minute route, but we will cover all the same territory."

Other routes like Graniteville and Birchaven will cover a greater area by circling in routes rather than going in a straight stretch and back.

"It will be a change for sure," Carvell said. "But we've left enough familiar so it won't be a major change."

The schedule is expected to change June 3 after all drivers are trained on the new routes. New schedules are being printed and should be available to the public by the end of April.

"We believe that we've thought of everything and just need to market it out to the public," Carvell said. "It's important the public realizes that these will still be fairly new routes for the drivers and we ask for their patience."
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Old May 11th, 2007, 05:13 AM   #72
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Here's a little photo update for North Bay.

The tower crane at the Hospital site taken through the window of a NB transit bus in the rain.


The city's oldest high-school located just outside the downtown is undergoing a major expansion.




Here are some pics of the newly completed transit terminal project!


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Old May 16th, 2007, 05:32 AM   #73
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Check this out! I came across this awesome aerial of south end Sudbury, from more than 20 years ago (or so). You can see Stop 2200 being built in the bottom right, the one-tower Sudbury Regional Hospital in the near-top middle (now has two about the same height), empty downtown at the top middle, and a bunch of residential blocks under construction.



Today, it is far more developed.
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Old May 17th, 2007, 11:33 PM   #74
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I was looking at that pic the other day (I've had it save to my computer for a long time, I have a huge version of it as well, I think it's from flickr?) and was wondering when it was taken and what it looks like now. If the angle was a bit lower and to the left, you'd have a pretty good skyline shot there.
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Old June 19th, 2007, 06:23 AM   #75
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Here's another blurry pic of the hospital site taken from the bus - only now the first tower crane has been joined by it's big brother!
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Old June 21st, 2007, 04:40 PM   #76
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Hey Vid any news on the waterfront, aka condos/hotel?
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Old June 22nd, 2007, 08:16 AM   #77
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Nothing yet, but I've seen some construction equipment heading down to the old Pool six site. When I go up to PA on Saturday, I'll take a look and see if I can see anything. I don't think the buildings will start until mid 2008.
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Old June 25th, 2007, 07:55 PM   #78
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Nothing I could see yet, but the new "Bobby Curtola Way" is finished and being used now.
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Old June 27th, 2007, 11:53 AM   #79
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Here are a couple of new pics of the nearly completed Holiday Inn suites project in North Bay. Now I'm looking forward for construction to start on the adjacent 83 unit "Staybridge Inn" Suites Hotel, it will be directly beside the Holiday Inn and will be 5 or 6 storeys tall.



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Old June 28th, 2007, 02:51 AM   #80
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Quote:
New mill offers stability to Atikokan
Tb News Source | Web Posted: 6/27/2007 5:46:55 PM

There is a new sense of optimism in the community of Atikokan with the provincial announcement of a wood allocation for a new value-added mill in the community.

There is no doubt that this is a big deal for Atikokan. Mayor Dennis Brown says it is the most uplifting news for the community in years.

After months of waiting, MPP Bill Mauro was in the community to make it official this week. Superior Laminated Lumber was the successful proponent for the White birch wood supply in the area. Mauro says this proposal was selected for a number of reasons but chief among them was that their plan would utilize the entire log.

For Mike Shusterman, the official announcement was surreal, the idea of a laminated veneer lumber facility in the northwest is one he has worked on since 1999. There were many peaks and valleys he says but after getting the wood supply, anything's possible.

It is expected that construction could begin next spring on the new mill meaning roughly 200 construction jobs alone. And with the site being adjacent to Fibratech, there will be plenty of synergies between the two companies.

This announcement is expected to significantly stabilize the economy of Atikokan adding vigor to the tax base and becoming one of the community's largest employers with roughly 180 new jobs when it opens.
Good news for Atikokan.
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