A longstanding monument to both Montreal's glorified past and architectural history, the Biosphere is one of the city's truly iconic landmarks. Originally built by Buckminster Fuller for Expo 67 as the American Pavilion, the Biosphere has enchanted residents and tourists alike for years.
But some feel that the Biosphere, a lone dome on Île Sainte-Hélène needs a new breath of life, and not through a redesign or reconstruction. Rather, Dror, a NYC-based believes a new monument needs to be built on Île Sainte-Hélène, one that will directly compliment the original Biosphere.
To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Expo 67, along with the city's 375th anniversary, Dror has proposed the creation of a "garden dome" on Île Sainte-Hélène, a structure that will look beautiful while benefiting Montrealers in a variety of ways.
A 150-meter-wide dome meant to be a "hybrid framework for nature and technology," the dome will utilize natural vegetation to suppress sound so it can serve as a site for events all throughout the year, including summer festivals, performances, and hackathons.
Covered in a vegetative canopy, the new dome will also serve as a link to the original Biosphere. With the Biosphere shiny and metallic and the new dome covered in green vegetation, the two will visually interplay and add an air of dynamism to the skyline of the island.
While nothing has been confirmed, Dror notes how "structural and landscape specialists" have already looked over the design plan, finding it to be "a responsible and achievable construction, able to welcome up to 60,000 guests, within 2 years." Quite an evaluation, to say the least.
Whether the city will decide to go forward with this plan remains to be seen, but after looking at some of the concept images, we're sure hoping they do. A green-covered dome that also serves as a place to unwind and party sounds like just the sort of new developments Montreal needs.
Boucherie Slovenia, a boulevard Saint-Laurent institution for 50 years, will soon serve its last spicy sausage.
The iconic home of enormous Eastern European-style sandwiches — Slovenian sausage and towering cold-cuts were staples — will close its doors forever on January 29, stated the owners Lourdes Rodrigues and Jean Teixeira in a Facebook post.
"Thank you to all our loyal customers, for the wonderful years," it stated.
The beloved Moishes steakhouse announced its closure under the strain of the pandemic in the summer of 2020.
The Boucherie Slovenia Facebook post asks readers to share their memories of the restaurant and butcher shop, with many offering childhood stories of visiting for a pepperette sandwich or their "underrated" smoked meat, "the best in the city," according to one commenter.
Many apparent long-time customers said they wouldn't know where to go to find dishes comparable to Boucherie Slovenia's treasured menu items.
Others remarked on how yet another classic Montreal restaurant is closing its doors. "Nothing replaces these fantastic old shops," stated one. "It's a loss. The rich character of the boulevard is disappearing."
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.
UPDATE: The Government of Quebec has introduced new COVID-19 health measures since this article was published. Please review guidelines and double-check the website and social media pages of the event or activity before you head out. We strongly recommend calling before you go.
Why You Should Go: Indoor gatherings are limited to six people right now, so call your besties up and plan a little shindig at one of your apartments. No better way to start the New Year than with your closest people.