Friday, January 30, 2009

FaceBook Friday - Mimi and Lulu's

Located in the historic Capitol Theater and home for years to Capitol Bingo , Mimi and Lulu's are part of a growing wave of young vibrant and creative small businesses that are choosing to set up shop in Sudbury's Downtown Core.

The funky showcase store is a creative haven in the middle of the Downtown carrying the products of over 20 local artists, offers a regular calendar of workshops and just plain home spun goodness you can feel when you walk into the storefront.

Owners Megan Conacher and Danielle Fraser
are using Face book to help to spread the word about their Fair Trade African products, up cycled jewelery, hand crafted arts, locally made yoga totes and more to a growing fan base.

With a Facebook group of close to 400 members they are now using the event calendar to publicize their upcoming good old fashioned Valentines exchange wine and cheese event, featuring live music by Sudbury's Will Gillespie, Friday, February 13, 2009 Time:7:30pm - 11:00pm in support of Le Centre Victoria pour femmes.

Mimi and Lulu's exciting designs, folk art and eye for color and splash make you believe that Sudbury's Main street is on the road to a new vision of creative revitalization. Now all it needs is a little more love and community support!

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Monday, January 26, 2009

Monday Maps - A Sudbury Sense of Place

photo by: DANIEL JAMES
It seems that no matter who you are or where you are from, living or visiting Sudbury leaves a strong impression, based not only on the Northern landscape but the iconic sights and landmarks that help to define the 'experience' of Sudbury. In this photo taken by Daniel James on holiday from Texas, we see the CPR Railyard, which since 1883 has marked Sudbury as a settlement. Located in the Downtown it continues to be a unique Sudbury Cityscape feature as rail cars and trains rumble through the city.

While a local Group ImagineSudbury is proposing to remove the tracks and explore opportunities for Downtown renewal the sense of place engendered by the old railyard is something that marks the Downtown as unique. With the beautiful heritage railway station also in disrepair and underutilized the long gone glory days of rail travel as a transportation hub have been bypassed by the building of the Paris Street bridge and arterial roadways which most Sudburians use to avoid the downtown and rarely if ever venture into.

photo by: ideanorth
photo by: ideanorth

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Sunday, January 25, 2009

Sunday Sudbury Morning

Recent news articles have highlighted the silent involvement of Sudburians over the past few years in the occupation and war in distant Afghanistan. From the nationally publicized death and funeral cortege of Warrant officer Gaétan Roberge, to a Group support recently launched for families (at least 30 Sudburians are currently serving ) to local retired police in training missions the 'war on terror' has received some minor local media attention.

This got me thinking a little about previous conflicts and the past involvement of Sudbury which I then looked up on the Sudbury Public Library database photography archive.Pictured above are Nickel plated shells from the First World War which INCO proudly helped to create and below a Gun Turret and a range of shells made from MOND Nickel (INCO's Predessecor) in Sheffield

And finally, aside from the technological breakthroughs in War machinery that Sudbury's industrial base has contributed, we can reflect on the human costs of war. Pictured below are the Air Cadets from Coniston at Camp Borden in 1944 including Pat Forestell whose family tragically lost 5 siblings in WW 2

Front row L-R: Ruddy, Jack; Gosselin, Fernand; McCrindle, Bruce; Bukacheski, Mike; Prevost, Raymond.
Second row L-R: Rivais, Alfred; Cresswell, Bob; Gosselin, Roland; Conlon, Pat; Conlon, Bob; Laforge, Romeo; Chisolm, Gordon; Spencer, Leonard; McLaughlin, George.
Third row L-R: Aggiss, Fred; Squires, Ron; Gobbo, Francis; Conlon, Ken; Lafontaine, Marcel; Olivier, Harold; Laporte, Roland; Davie, Mike; Prevost, Donald; Forestell, Pat.
Back row L-R: Laporte, Maurice; Lajeunesse, Murray; Johnson, Norm; Gaudette, Maurice; Albert, Maurice; Smith, Stan; Cresswell, Jack; Olivier, Prosper; Collin, Wilfred.

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Friday, January 23, 2009

Facebook Friday - Lets Fix Our Amphitheatre

Every Friday, GreenSudbury profiles a Facebook group that is using the social network to talk about and share information about Sudbury

Following the 2008 Sudbury City Council defeat of a proposal to
develop a multi purpose arts facility, local artist Rod Bazinet began a campaign to preserve and upgrade the city's best known outdoors arts venue -Bell Park Amphitheatre.

With a public meeting under its belt, a letter writing campaign to local City Councilors and a facebook group with over 300 members the Lets Fix Our Amphitheatre group is raising the issue of arts facilities, civic pride, and an artistic political voice to speak out for the city's heritage and funding priorities.

They have uncovered a previously approved plan for the Grace Hartman venue upgrades and are following the current budgeted items including parking, Jim Gordon Walkway, canteen improvements on Ramsey lake home to Northern Lights Festival Boreal, Sudbury Dragon Boat Festival, SummerFest and more.


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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Tuesday Town - Sudbury Smorgasborg

I've been thinking about a theme for regular Tuesday blogs and settled on a Tuesday Town theme - Links and stories that focus on urban issues for Sudbury.

Last week close to 60 people attended the 2nd workshop of the day from Gil Penolasa of the Walk and Bike For Life Organization at Tom Davies Square with a focus on livable Cities and pedestrian issues including trails, biking, walking and urban planning. Keep an eye out for the follow up Community Action Plan and read one attendees letter

Sudbury City Council is now debating the adoption of a Traffic Calming Policy. . The history of the studies completed to date are available here.

Sudbury Transit Buses were in the news last week with a bus/train collision and the under reported announcement of a $26 million dollar Bus Barn as Sudbury's infrastructure project.

Meanwhile, as the proposed Sudbury School of Architecture is touted as a cure all for what ails the downtown, the City looks to a Building DesignCulture project for inspiration.

And the Imaginesudbury campaign to move the rail lines is termed a pipedream by local media.

Note the similar fate of other recent projects like the StreetScape Project or the Arts Facility and try to ask yourself why is this occurring?

It certainly seems that other northern towns have more success like the Sault, Thunder Bay or NorthBay

Next week on Tuesday Town - some simple solutions and suggestions for sudbury's Design woes.

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Monday, January 19, 2009

Monday Maps Paris France -

Ok. I warned you that Google Street View was addictive, so I've decided to launch a regular Monday Maps Feature. Each Monday a great Google street view from around the world starting with this gem from Paris France - Le Jardin Robert Cavelier de la Salle. What makes this map so interesting is the well designed public space and street life. Notice the wide plaza leaving lots of room for families and pedestrians and less room for cars. The result is a green space with walking, soccer, bike and scooter parking and a real sense of a public plaza.

View Larger Map

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Sunday, January 18, 2009

Local Sudbury Historical Photo's

At one time the City of Sudbury was, in addition to being a mining and forestry community, a largely agricultural based economy. Sudbury and surrounding communities were farming based and largely self sufficient in locally grown food production.
Here in 1947, a row of horses are tilling the spring soil for planting at the Burwash Federal correctional prison. While Burwash was a completely self contained community it did export its agricultural products for sale to Sudbury markets.

Today, Burwash is a military training ground that conducts house to house urban warfare and winter search and cordon exercises in conjunction with Camp Petawawa and the Canadian Forces Reserves. It still maintains Northern Ontario's largest herd of free ranging Elk.

While a local Sudbury Citizens Movement conducted feasibility studies on converting the abandoned land and buildings into a self sufficient intentional community in the 1980' s, the proposal did not become a reality. Photo:Ida Tuominen, in Garson.

Certainly no New Zealand kiwi's or Florida oranges at the local dry goods store in the 1930's but fresh fish from Whitefish or blueberries from Coniston.

These photo's are from farming communities that once operated within a 100 mile radius of the city - what todays food security vernacular calls a locavore diet ( food produced within a 100 mile limit).
Pictured here are Emeril Quesnel, Alida Pharand,
Emile Ménard, and Adrien Pharand, working by hand in a Valley East Potato farm.

Not only was the local economy earth based in all aspects ( Nickel, Timber, Vegetables) it was also a cash-less economy, with opportunities for 'shopping' and a consumption based lifestyle few and far between.

Often, the general store, post office or company stores were the only 'commercial' credit based establishments available in the city.

In this photo from Hervé Berthiaume and Marie-JeanneVaillancourt, in Rayside Balfour a travelling salesman is leaving the lumber camps.

All photo's are from the Greater Sudbury Public Library Heritage Digital Alliances project and can be searched through the online database at Archive Photos'

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Friday, January 9, 2009

Public Meeting on Vale Inco’s Request for an Alteration of Air Standard

Public Meeting on Vale Inco’s Request for an Alteration of Air Standard

Date and Time: Wednesday January 21st, 2009, 7:00 pm
Location: Room C-11, Tom Davies Square, 200 Brady Street, City of Greater Sudbury.

People attending can park in the underground lot at the City. Parking is free after 6:00 pm.
On October 31st, 2008, the Ontario Ministry of the Environment (MOE) received a request from Vale Inco to consider an alteration to the nickel in air standard under Ontario Regulation 419/05, which comes into effect for the facility on Feb 1st, 2010.

For an Altered Standard to be considered, the facility must demonstrate that it is doing the best that can be done to reduce concentrations with a goal of continual improvement towards meeting the standard over time. As part of this request, Vale Inco hosted a public meeting on October 23rd, 2008 to inform the local community about the request.

On December 11th, 2008, the MOE posted the proposed request for the altered standard on the Environmental Bill of Rights Registry (EBR) for public comment (EBR Registry Number 010-5356).

Due to the interest expressed by the community at the October public meeting, the Ministry has organized a follow up meeting with the local community in which you will have an opportunity to learn more about the Alteration of Standards process and the framework for the Ministry’s review of the Request that was recently submitted by Vale Inco.

Public comments will be considered during the Ministry’s review. The Ministry is also willing to host further public consultation meetings over the next year at specific milestones during the review process. The purpose of these meetings would be to ensure that the local community is involved in the Ministry’s review to the extent possible, and is kept informed of the status.

If you have any additional questions, please contact

Box 282, North Bay P1B 8H2
tel 705 497 0373 fax 476 7060

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Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Free Walk and Bike Tranportation Workshop

Free Workshop on Tuesday , January 13th 6:30 - 9:30 Tom Davies Square
featuring Gil Penalosa, of Walk and Bike for Life.

Gil was the commissioner of Parks, Sport and Recreation for Bogata Colombia and successfully opened 91 kilometers of car-free city roads on Sundays, the Ciclovia, where over 1.5 million people come out weekly to walk, run, skate and bike.

He also re-designed the master plan for Simon Bolivar Park (360 hectares),designed and built three metropolitan parks, 15 zone parks, 150 neighborhood parks.

The Walk & Bike for Life is a Canadian based non- profit organization that champions Trail development and healthy communities including Car Free days, bike sharing programs and complete streets putting Pedestrians in the center of urban city planning and downtown renewal.

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Monday, January 5, 2009

It's time for a Declaration of Tree Rights

Trees Have Rights Too
is a new campaign for a Universal Declaration of Planetary Rights by the United Nations. The idea was first proposed at a recent Climate Change Conference and has caught on. The website has videos, tree pics and a map of ongoing global actions to have trees elevated to the status of protected Earth Rights.

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Sunday, January 4, 2009

Climate Change Camp 2008

George Monbiout - reporter from the U.K. Gaurdian takes a look at recent Direct Action for Climate Change in a huge coal mining operation in Wales

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Saturday, January 3, 2009

Listen to Montreal with the Montreal sound map

This project The Montreal Sound Map is a great example of Google Maps with a sound layer. A initiative of the Concordia Electroacoustic Studies Student Association with dozens of sounds the project allows you to upload your own sounds and photos as well and is ongoing.

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