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Flowers on a One-Way Street 6

The summer of 1967 sealed the fate for the future of Toronto. The city was on the verge of a revolution that would see the community reclaim the urban landscape to create a Mecca for the bohemians to hang out and relax – free from the toxic exhaust fumes that had smothered the city. It ...

Toronto Set to Axe Bike Sharing? 7

Photo by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country In November, The Urban Country broke news that Toronto’s upcoming bike share system would run year-round when it arrives in 2010. In that article, we asked whether Toronto was ready for BIXI, Montreal’s bike sharing system that has since signed contracts with Boston, London, Minneapolis and ...

Pragmatism Eludes Politicians 17

Photo courtesy of Dylan Passmore  Toronto Star urban affairs columnist Christopher Hume writes yesterday: “the fact remains we don’t have a choice; if we want Toronto and environs to prosper, there’s no alternative but transit”. Sorry Mr. Hume, but there is another alternative. A very viable alternative that most in the media and government choose ...

Use Your Brain, Wash Your Spoon 8

An e-mail forward on plastic cutlery has been floating around for a while – so I thought I would revise it slightly and post it here: It’s pretty amazing that our society has reached a point where the effort necessary to extract oil from the ground, ship it to a refinery, turn it into plastic, ...

Sketch It: Taking The Lane 6

“Taking The Lane” – by George Pechtol / The Urban Country Sketch it! is a fun section on The Urban Country where we feature random napkin sketches from our resident sketch artist and writer, George Pechtol. In a tweet this week, I called on fellow Torontonian cyclists to take the whole right lane to discourage ...

Bike Lanes: A Motorist Invention? 16

Photo by James D. Schwartz / The Urban Country (Beverley St. Toronto) Imagine this: a cycling advocate who doesn’t support bike infrastructure. I was both surprised and intrigued when I first learned about the phenomenon they call “vehicular cycling”. Vehicular cycling was popularized by John Forester, a Britain-born American cyclist and industrial engineer who has ...