We left for Portugal on January 31st. I have only published twice since then. But, I have been busy. We spent four weeks in Nazaré, the World’s surfing capital. Yes, this is the place that surfers go to catch the 100-foot waves. And then, two weeks in Vienna. I did take time to enjoy my winter break but I was working several hours a day, mostly on a project designed to find a way to fund green projects in the urban environment. We had our workshop on March 28 at Massey College, Toronto. And then, the ice “event” in Montreal had us on a nomadic search for a hot shower. So, not a lot of time to blog and I have missed writing. I hope you have missed me.
I will pick up my series on cities. I have started the section on affordable housing – a complex but not unsolvable problem. There will be new articles on this topic but I will probably insert some posts on Third Places in between these articles. Maybe there will be a little bit more on Portugal and on our time in Vienna. And, of course, the occasional item on a restaurant I may think you should enjoy! Or, perhaps avoid! Or about something I really like or dislike.
However, I am going to avoid politics. There will be no question about my views on certain topics but the cupboard is bare when it comes to politicians and political parties. This is true, almost everywhere in the world and particularly so in Canada.
And really, I have missed writing.
Before I fall completely into the trap of opposition politics, I have decided to take a break from never-ending criticism and to start suggesting solutions to the affordable housing conundrum. Do I have a plan? No, more a collection of ideas To start with, I think there are three key issues: Home ownership is not […]
I know! I am going to sound like a grumpy old man. Maybe that is because I am. I have been scratching my head in wonderment at the Taylor Swift phenomena. Is she an Incredible song writer, composer, and performer? I really don’t know! A discussion for another time? But probably not. At my age […]
Don’t build it! At least, Not In My Back Yard ! I acted as an advisor in the sale of a beautifully natural, 14-acre urban waterfront estate. Existing zoning allowed for the development of 30 to 35 single-family homes, which after road dedication would leave very little green space. I did not think that was […]
We were visiting Glasgow (literally that Dear Green Place in Gaelic) to see where my father was born, grew up, and went to University. Fortunately for me, my cousin John from Australia had just visited and had met with historians, Bruce Downie and Norry Wilson. So, we too arranged to meet them in the Govanhill […]
Vienna on top again. This week both Monocle Magazine and The Economist unveiled their quality of life / most liveable city indexes. There are differences in the way each publication sets its index. So it is even more impressive that once again, Vienna tops both lists. I am a bit lazy today so rather than […]
Many Viennese went from hot bedding to superblocks overnight. Could they even imagine an apartment complex 1000 metres long built along two streets with even more massive landscaped courtyards? Could they conceive of 1400 apartment units built to house 5000 people on 56,000 square metres or 38 acres of land. Or a vertical build-out that […]