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Old February 10th, 2010, 05:40 AM   #1401
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Quote:
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Toronto's freeway network is not dense enough. There are only two freeways that serve the downtown area, plus a surrounding area of 30 by 10 kilometers! That is why the existing freeways are saturated, due to the lack of alternate routes.
I agree with you 100%. Our freeway network is inadequate, but there isn't much that can be done at this point, since building new freeways would require demolishing neighbourhoods, which won't happen. My main grudge is that there is no freeway connection to the downtown core in the centre, between the 404/DVP and the 427. This annoys me in particular because I happen to live more or less in the centre between the two, right on the northern border between Toronto and Vaughan (an adjacent suburb). The Allen was supposed to be that freeway, but construction was stopped at Eglinton (though, reading the about the reasons for that - perhaps this was a good decision). The 400, which is somewhat of an alternative, does not go all the way either.
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Old February 10th, 2010, 06:58 PM   #1402
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The Allen was supposed to be that freeway, but construction was stopped at Eglinton (though, reading the about the reasons for that - perhaps this was a good decision).
Why did they stop at Eglinton?

One thing that Toronto could consider, like Montreal did, would be to add a tunnel into downtown. The A40 runs right through the middle of Montreal, bypassing downtown. The A720, however, runs beneath the entire downtown core while providing exits to various parts of it. Montreal should serve as a model for infrastructure building in North America, I think. Of course it's pretty run down and needs upgrading, but the design is there. Of course it would be expensive for Toronto to do now, but I think it would pay for itself after a few years of use.
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Old February 10th, 2010, 10:32 PM   #1403
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I think Montreal has the best motorway network in Canada IMO.
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Old February 10th, 2010, 10:37 PM   #1404
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I second that. The most prominent missing link in Montreal might be a connection between downtown and A25 on the west bank of the St. Lawrence.

I rather see a network of small-scale 2x2 and 2x3 motorways spaced apart 4 - 7 km than those monsters like in Toronto where important connections are missing in large areas (like my example of Toronto where there are only two motorways in an urban area of about 250 km² or (250 * 3,000) = 750,000 people.)
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Old February 11th, 2010, 12:55 AM   #1405
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^ Montreal is a beautiful city ... however I dare say that its highway network looks far better on a map then it does in real life. I wouldn't use Quebec Freeways as a model for anything.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 01:09 AM   #1406
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^ Montreal is a beautiful city ... however I dare say that its highway network looks far better on a map then it does in real life. I wouldn't use Quebec Freeways as a model for anything.
LOL , i found them dangerous , confusing and badly maintained when i visited back in the summer of 05' , form what my friends say , not much has changed.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 03:35 AM   #1407
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Yes, Quebec went nuts with freeway building and now the costs to maintain them are overwhelming, not to mention upgrading outdated sections. Anyone remember the overpass collapse in Laval?

There need to be some sort of balance here, either have a freeway network like Toronto's accompanied by an excellent public transport system or have a freeway network close to what Montreal has and adequate public transport.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 06:11 AM   #1408
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Why did they stop at Eglinton?

One thing that Toronto could consider, like Montreal did, would be to add a tunnel into downtown. The A40 runs right through the middle of Montreal, bypassing downtown. The A720, however, runs beneath the entire downtown core while providing exits to various parts of it. Montreal should serve as a model for infrastructure building in North America, I think. Of course it's pretty run down and needs upgrading, but the design is there. Of course it would be expensive for Toronto to do now, but I think it would pay for itself after a few years of use.
Heh yeah a tunnel would be nice of course, but that's never gonna happen as the costs involved are simply too huge. While I like driving and would love Toronto to have a better freeway system, I would actually prefer the money to be spent on expanding the subway system. Doesn't really matter though, since neither is going to happen anytime soon.

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LOL , i found them dangerous , confusing and badly maintained when i visited back in the summer of 05' , form what my friends say , not much has changed.
Unfortunately you are right. I cannot speak for the whole Quebec Autoroute system, because I only traveled on a relatively small part of it, but the design and maintenance standards on the parts that I did travel were inferior to Ontario's 400-series, significantly. Short acceleration lanes, poor pavement quality, and (what the heck?!?) traffic lights on A20.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 06:57 AM   #1409
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I agree with the idea that Montreal's infrastructure is in bad shape; what I am saying is that its design is without a doubt the best in Canada and should serve as a model for future infrastructure development throughout North America. If everything was upgraded, if all the cracks and holes were filled in and overpasses replaced/reinforced, Montreal would be the best of the best.

As for people finding it difficult getting around there, if you speak French it makes it much easier. Saying Montreal is confusing without knowing how to speak French would be like me blaming Russians for having a confusing infrastructure just because I can't speak Russian. If you can read the signs, it's pretty straightforward.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 07:32 AM   #1410
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If you can read the signs, it's pretty straightforward.
There's not nearly enough notice though. By the time you've read the sign, it's too late to get in the right lane. Toronto is a little better in this regard, but not much.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 08:23 AM   #1411
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Eh, Montreal's freeway system does not meet modern standards and is overbuilt in some areas while underbuilt in others. And was the Quartier International development not an expensive attempt at reconciling some of the problems associated with spearing a sunken motorway through an established urban core? It's a cool tunnel to drive through for sure, but there are myriad better ways for dealing with transportation in a core and that tunnel has proven itself pretty expensive in the long run in terms of both maintenance and urban renewal (buildings over the trench). In the coming decades the Gardiner will become an expensive problem as well...and look at what happened to Boston. Would rather see investment in public transit.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 10:56 AM   #1412
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Eh, Montreal's freeway system does not meet modern standards and is overbuilt in some areas while underbuilt in others. And was the Quartier International development not an expensive attempt at reconciling some of the problems associated with spearing a sunken motorway through an established urban core? It's a cool tunnel to drive through for sure, but there are myriad better ways for dealing with transportation in a core and that tunnel has proven itself pretty expensive in the long run in terms of both maintenance and urban renewal (buildings over the trench). In the coming decades the Gardiner will become an expensive problem as well...and look at what happened to Boston. Would rather see investment in public transit.
Overall Canadian Highways didn't impress me , but the worst of the worst was Quebec , what i don't understand is why the signs aren't Bi-lingual like some Ontario and New Brunswick , and bordering state signs , its only fair. The French make up a tiny portion of North America. Public Transit has a very bright future in Montreal unlike Toronto form i read. Montreal Transit , just helped my state in splitting the costs of a new order of Trains , the first In't purchase of its kind. Montreal & the rest of Quebec had drainage problems on the roads and freeways , when it rained it flooded.

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Old February 11th, 2010, 01:57 PM   #1413
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@the good captain,

Again, I think its difficult to say that Montreal should be used as the model. Montreal has some bright spots, the freeways across Laval really do work well.

My problem with the city is that it is difficult to get through it at rush hour. The 40 is a parking lot between the 13 and the Lafontaine Tunnel exit and while the 640 is a good alternate, its a long way up A-13, and its only beneficial if you are continuing east of Montreal on the 40.

Trying to get from north to south shore during rush hour is difficult as well. The Champlain Bridge is a parking lot at the best of times. The Lafontaine Tunnel works better but you can't get to it without getting stuck in traffic on the 40.

The 30 will be a great addition once its finished. I kind of think it should strip the TCH designation from the route via the 40 and 25 -- or failing that, at least designate the 30 as well.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 07:27 PM   #1414
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Overall Canadian Highways didn't impress me , but the worst of the worst was Quebec
No one is disputing that Quebec's, Montreal's in particular, are in rough shape. We're saying that it's design is good, that it's layout is good. Montreal's highways are in the worst shape in Canada, no contest. But when it comes to its design, they have the best.

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what i don't understand is why the signs aren't Bi-lingual like some Ontario and New Brunswick , and bordering state signs , its only fair. The French make up a tiny portion of North America.
That would be like saying that France should have bilingual signs for the British so it could be 'only fair'.

Of the 7.8 million Quebecors, 5.5 million of them claim French as their native language. Why should they change their signs around for the Americans that drive through? It's expensive to have to print everything twice on signs - signs have to be bigger, more paint is used and more reinforcement needs to support the sign once it's up, or font size could suffer in an effort to fit more writing, reducing the sign's effectiveness.

If you have a problem with French and have to drive through Quebec, then maybe you should spend 20 minutes with an English/French dictionary to figure out what Nord/Sud and Droit/Gauche mean.

The argument that Quebec is a very small portion of North America is null; Quebec is what it is and its infrastructure, and more importantly its culture, is suited for its people before outsiders. When people go to Quebec and can't speak French, why is that Quebec's problem? I don't go to France and expect everyone to speak English, I don't go to Germany and expect everyone to speak English; I don't go somewhere whose primary language is one other than English and get upset at them because of my own negligence.

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Public Transit has a very bright future in Montreal unlike Toronto form i read. Montreal Transit , just helped my state in splitting the costs of a new order of Trains , the first In't purchase of its kind. Montreal & the rest of Quebec had drainage problems on the roads and freeways , when it rained it flooded.
Which is why we're saying that Montreal's infrastructure is the best in the country. The STM and AMT provide excellent coverage of metropolitan Montreal and are actually used significantly. Stations are placed in areas with ease of access and convenience. In many North American cities using the train is just as inconvenient, or slower, than driving as commuters must first drive to the station.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 09:36 PM   #1415
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I agree with you 100% about the language. When I went to Montreal, I didn't have trouble with the signs. Place names are place names in any language as long as they are written in a script you can read (which is the case with French). Like you said, the only thing you would need to know are probably the words for east and west which, even if you don't know French, are quite easy to guess (sud=south, nord=north).

About Montreal's public transport system - it is perhaps better than Toronto's (I only traveled on a small portion of it), but I absolutely hated their subway system. Sure, it may have better coverage than Toronto's (the total length and number of stations are actually about the same, though the layout, combined with Montreal's more compact nature might contribute to that effect), but the trains are the worst I've ever traveled in, and are very uncomfortable compared to Toronto's. Very narrow and (!!) no air conditioning in the middle of the summer. It was so bad after Toronto's that we decided to walk instead of taking the subway. We have the advantage in Toronto that the subway uses wider-than-usual rail gauge as well.
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Old February 11th, 2010, 11:24 PM   #1416
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Montreal's mass transit is better than 95%+ of North American cities, but I agree that their metro needs new trains.
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Old February 12th, 2010, 03:24 AM   #1417
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Of the 7.8 million Quebecors, 5.5 million of them claim French as their native language.
Does it mean that for 2.3 million French is not a native language?
That's quite large proportion. How about them?
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Old February 12th, 2010, 04:50 AM   #1418
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Montreal's mass transit is better than 95%+ of North American cities, but I agree that their metro needs new trains.
AMT & NJT just purchased some New Trains , it was the first In't Purchase , i think we bought 30 New Dual Diesel - Electric Locos and Bi-level Cars , Hopefully in 10 - 15 Years there will be 2 High Speed Routes heading south form Montreal to Boston & Albany - New York City , but lets not get to off topic. Montreal needs better signs , and drainage , intill they fix that along with there pavement and lack of guard Rails , i'll bypass them for the Atlantic Provinces.

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Old February 12th, 2010, 05:33 AM   #1419
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Does it mean that for 2.3 million French is not a native language?
That's quite large proportion. How about them?
They're bilingual or don't speak either as a first language. Montreal is one of Canada's most ethnically diverse cities after Toronto and Vancouver. There are all kinds of people that don't speak either as a first language.

I don't have the figures in front of me, but more than 90% of Anglophones born in Quebec have at least a basic understanding of French. How couldn't they, really. A great uncle of mine has lived in Montreal for more than forty years; my family moved there from Scotland in the sixties and none of them speak French (they've all moved back to the UK, but he stayed in Montreal). He doesn't speak a word of French, but he understands what the signs mean. He knows basic instructions that are posted on signs. I'd imagine that that would be the case for most Anglophones in Quebec. Most of them, however, are bilingual.

If you choose to live in another society, you shouldn't expect them to change their ways to accommodate you. If you don't want to learn their culture or be part of it, that's fine but don't expect them to change themselves to fit your needs, because you went to them.

That's how I see it.

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Montreal needs better signs , and drainage , intill they fix that along with there pavement and lack of guard Rails , i'll bypass them for the Atlantic Provinces.
I haven't had any trouble with their signs, but that's me. If you think they need to change them because you don't understand the language printed on them, then that's not a signage problem - you need to learn French.

Granted, the pavement is in terrible condition. People try to get money out of the provincial government all the time for damage caused by potholes and cracks, chunks of concrete in the road - you name it. I've never heard of any drainage problems, so I can't speculate on that. But yes, the highways are certainly in a bad state of disrepair.

Montreal's got a great system, the best in country, and they're letting it crumble. Hopefully they'll start fixing things before another overpass falls and kills someone.
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Old February 12th, 2010, 05:38 AM   #1420
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Too bad Quebec is not as wealthy as Ontario.
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