Ah yes, it is that fabulous time of the year when all your relative from out of town visit Montreal. It may not be their first time, but once they drive, or fly, in they always say the same things. "Wow, it's so cold here, can we go get a poutine? Let me try to ask in French!"
We sure do love showing off our city whether it be our poutines or now our ugly Christmas tree, but there are some things those out-of-towners immediately notice on their own! Some good things, and maybe some bad things but in the end, they will bever want to leave!
1. The First Thing They Notice Is That Our Cops Wear Clown Pants
Montreal is certainly no stranger to a traffic jam, which makes taking public transit a more viable option to not only get around faster but do more good for the environment.
As Canadian cities take the initiative to improve their transit systems and reduce their carbon footprints, Montreal has become one of the country's greenest metropolitan areas when it comes to transport, according to one ranking.
A December report from Kijiji Autos analyzed green transport options in Canada's most populated cities, evaluating their use of electric cars, bikes, scooters, and the number of electric charging stations.
With its metro and bus systems, BIXI rentals, bike lanes, and availability of electric cars, Montreal found itself in third place among Canadian cities that offer the greenest transport with a score of 5.5/10.
Although Vancouver and Ottawa/Gatineau snagged the top two spots, Montreal takes the lead as the most bicycle-friendly city in all of North America, with a total of 2,163 bicycle paths, says the Copenhagenize Index.
Montreal's third-place ranking is encouraging news, said McGill University Assistant Professor of Geography, Grant McKenzie, who specifically boasted about Montreal's metro system, "especially compared to other Canadian cities," as well as its "substantial investment towards electric buses."
While McKenzie said "we can always do better" and bemoaned the city's ban on e-scooters, he called the popularity of the BIXI and the inclusion of electric bikes in its fleet an "excellent move in the right direction."
As for electric cars, Kijiji Autos looked at new registrations of electric vehicles in the first quarter of 2021, as well as total charging stations. Montreal landed second to Toronto with a total of 3,633 new registered electric cars, and 1,258 electric charging stations throughout the city.
Kijiji Autos also looked at the number of hybrids and electric vehicles for sale on their platform. Montreal led the way with 1,063 hybrid vehicles and 375 electric vehicles, states the report.
With the province of Quebec offering residents a rebate for the purchase or lease of electric cars, Quebec estimates that there will be 1.5 million electric vehicles on the road by 2030.
It's official — 2021 was the hottest year on record for Montreal, according to Environment Canada. It beat out the previous hottest years, 1998 and 2012, by a mean few hundredths of a degree.
This rise in temperature in Montreal is attributed to new weather patterns, causing scorching temperatures in June, August, September and October. "August and October were record-breaking months," said Environment Canada spokesperson Simon Legault.
"We were lucky that July was below normal because if it hadn't happened that way, [...] we would have shattered the record instead of just breaking it," he added.
A few hundredths of a degree may not sound like such a big problem, but temperatures in Montreal (and around the world) have been steadily rising.
The average annual temperature in Montreal from 1951 to 1980 was 6.5ºC, according to ClimateData.ca. Last year's mean temperature came in at a whopping 8.6ºC. This drastic increase in fortyish years has already begun to show its effects — not just on our electrical bills in the summer, but also the health of the population, the Climate Action Network says.
Whether or not 2022 will be even hotter remains anyone's guess. Projections for an area as small as Southern Quebec can only be made a few weeks in advance.
What we do know is that February and March should be significantly warmer than January.
"A few short intense waves of cold are coming in," Legault said of January, adding that February and March are expected to be "close to or above normal temperatures."
A 911 call was placed at around 2:15 a.m. on December 10, alerting police officers to excessive noise coming from an apartment on rue Centre, near rue Charlevoix, said Service de police de la Ville de Montréal (SPVM) spokesperson Jean-Pierre Brabant.
Brabant told MTL Blog that when police officers arrived on the scene, they saw a group of people causing the disturbance in an apartment. Some of the individuals noticed the police officers outside through the window and started fleeing the scene, he said.
Officers were able to catch one individual who was attempting to flee. Upon searching him, police found a firearm on him, Brabant said.
The man was arrested and is expected to appear in court Friday afternoon in connection with possession of that firearm, said Brabant.
While police were searching the scene during the event, Brabant said police found a second firearm, which they seized, amounting to a total of two firearms seized over the course of the "operation, if you could call it that."
Brabant said the investigation is ongoing and police have been able to identify other people who were at the scene of the incident.
"So there's probably going to be other arrests or accusations later on," he said.
"At this point, we're still [doing] an investigation to see who was in that place and [to see] if we could identify and put accusations against other people that were inside that apartment."
This article’s cover image was used for illustrative purposes only.
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Cold winters in Montreal are inevitable but dry winter skin is not. By changing your skincare regimen and using the right products, you can keep your skin looking soft and smooth all season long.
Shoppers Drug Mart is full of effective and inexpensive products that can keep your skin hydrated and moisturized to the max. There are over 400 beauty brands to choose from to help you build a routine that suits your specific needs. From Cerave to La Roche Posay, Olay, Bioderma, Versed, and so many more!
The great thing about shopping there is that you can use your PC Optimum™ card to score tons of points that you can put towards your next purchase. You can redeem $10 for every 10,000 points you earn.
Let's say your biggest skincare concern is redness caused by rosacea or eczema. At Shoppers Drug Mart, you can find gentle, non-irritating products that won't break the bank, like this UriageRoséliane Anti-redness Cream for $28.
If you're still suffering from acne through the winter, the Cocokind Turmeric Tonic Spot Treatment for $14.99 is a good product to have in your beauty cabinet. It's a leave-on spot treatment that can help zap zits overnight.
Besides drinking water and investing in a humidifier (which you can also find at Shoppers Drug Mart), there are other ways to keep your skin hydrated and protected against the cold.
If you notice your skin's complexion is dull and lacking radiance, you can apply a few drops of Indeed Laboratories Vitamin C Brightening Drops after cleansing and before moisturizing. It costs $19.99 and you can earn 285 PC Optimum™ points with your order.
You can also try one of the newer brands at Shoppers Drug Mart called Florence Mills. The Mind Glowing Peel Off Mask for $29 will help you reset your skin after a long week, leaving you with a radiant complexion.
Some of us tend to get dry, flaky skin around our eyelids and under-eye area which is never cute. But there are a few effective ways of treating the condition after a quick trip to the drugstore.
You can buy a velvety rich cream like the Versed Zero-G Smoothing Eye Cream for $23.99. This one's loaded with smoothing algae extract, firming peptides and ethically-sourced mica so the sensitive skin around your eyes stays hydrated and younger-looking at the same time. We love a multi-tasker!
The CeraVe Hydrating Cleanser With Hyaluronic Acid is a massive fan-favourite and it's only $17.99. It's a non-foaming lotion that gently removes dirt and oil while keeping your skin super hydrated, especially during cold weather season.
With the holidays around the corner, everyone is super slammed with work and family and there's little time left for personal shopping. The Shoppers Drug Mart website makes it quick and easy to shop for products by concern, so you get what you need faster. Whether it's fine lines, redness, dark circles or dryness, you can filter through different concerns to find the product that's right for you.
You can even filter through different brands, formulas, skin types and ratings which is a huge time-saver. Now that your skin looks amazing, you can get back to doing all your favourite winter activities feeling comfortable and confident.