Category Archives: Pop quiz

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 44

The intersection of Maisonneuve and St. Rose no longer exists.

What will you find there now?

Maisonneuve and St. Rose (from Montreal's archives)

Maisonneuve and St. Rose (from Montreal's archives)

UPDATE: Jean Naimard nails it below. You’ll find the Parc de Champlain, which sits at the corner of Ste. Rose and Alexandre-Desève. Maisonneuve Street was renamed Alexandre-Desève with the creation of the similarly-named De Maisonneuve Boulevard.

Shopping centre double pop quiz

Shopping centre

The owner of this giant parking lot revently announced measures to become more environmentally-friendly. What did it decide to do?

  1. Remove 100 of its 4,000 parking spaces to add trees and other greenery
  2. Require its buildings to abide by strict environmental standards and ban the use of air conditioners with open doors
  3. Add bicycle lanes to its roads
  4. Partially subsidize an STM bus that would stop inside the shopping centre and take shoppers to the metro
  5. Install recycling bins at street corners and at store entrances
  6. Give away some plants, encourage some merchants to take used batteries and run some composting workshops

Shopping centre

What was taking place when these pictures were taken?

  1. A bankruptcy sale of a major retailer
  2. A sidewalk sale
  3. An evacuation
  4. Family day

Marché Central sidewalk sale

UPDATE: So those are the answers.

Marché Central, the neighbourhood of parking lots and strip malls that represent just about everything environmentalists hate, is trying again to present itself as environmentally-friendly. For their greenwashing efforts, they got a no-questions-asked press-release-as-news article in the Courrier Bordeaux-Cartierville. (It’s also unclear if their used battery plan was dependent on Eco-Centres, who have decided to no longer accept them from retailers.)

And they organized a sidewalk sale that few merchants participated in (even then it amounted to putting a rack of clothes outside and having a very bored sales rep sitting guard outside).

There are plenty of very big ways that Marché Central could reduce its environmental footprint, most of which involve discouraging car travel and excess energy consumption by retailers. But those measures would cause a revolt by the retailers and might affect their bottom line.

Marché Central believes in environmentalism, but not enough to pay for it.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 42

Here’s a riddle for you.

There are two streets in Montreal that share the same name (almost, one adds the word “du”), are about 12km from each other and both lie entirely north of Gouin Blvd. (though still on the island).

Their common name evokes forestry, though isn’t the name of any individual type of tree.

What are their names?

UPDATE: Five of you got this one right: Rue Bocage in Ahuntsic and Rue Du Bocage in Pierrefonds. Though extra points for those who noticed that there are two Rues Du Pont, in Ste. Geneviève and Ahuntsic. (The first, notably, doesn’t actually lead to a bridge.)

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 41

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 41

Where is this intersection, and why is it dangerous?

UPDATE: It is, of course, the corner of Brunswick Blvd. and Auto Plaza Ave. in Pointe-Claire, right outside the Fairview mall.

There are two main reasons it’s so dangerous (not including the fact that it’s the first intersection used by a lot of people in their brand new cars):

  • This intersection of a six-lane road and a four-lane road is controlled only by stop signs (and at one point in its history it didn’t even have that). The intersection is so large it’s hard to tell who has the right of way.
  • Only a few metres away from this intersection is the main entrance off Brunswick Blvd. to the Fairview shopping centre, the largest mall in the West Island. It is also the entrance and exit to the Fairview bus terminal, where 18 bus routes stop. This intersection is controlled by only a single stop sign at the exit to the mall.

This seems like a no-brainer for a traffic light, perhaps even a reorganization to ensure that car and bus traffic have a safer right-of-way, especially because the main way to access Fairview is by making a left turn as shown below.

This intersection has a lot of left-turning traffic who have to yield to oncoming vehicles from three different directions

This intersection has a lot of left-turning traffic who have to yield to oncoming vehicles from three different directions

Vehicles passing through the piece of pavement occupied by this grey car in the middle include:

  • Cars exiting the mall’s parking lot, turning left or right onto Brunswick Blvd.
  • Cars turning left from Brunswick Blvd. into the parking lot
  • Cars heading east on Brunswick Blvd.
  • Cars turning left onto Brunswick Blvd. from Auto Plaza Ave.
  • Buses exiting the terminal to head west on Brunswick Blvd.

And vehicles are expected to look at all this traffic and judge when it’s safe to cross.

Though it’s done safely thousands of times every day, it can take forever during the busy shopping season, and all it takes is one bad judgment to cause an accident.

These intersections need a set of traffic lights. Now.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 39

MGT #39

‘Roundabout where is this?

UPDATE: Jason gets it right below. It’s the intersection of Sources Blvd. and Riverdale Blvd. in Pierrefonds, just beyond the tracks, one of the few roundabouts on the island.

Riverdale Blvd.: Behold the suburban conformity!

Riverdale Blvd.: Behold the suburban conformity!

The roundabout, which I crossed a while back on my bike, leads to a new development in the Parc des Rapides du Cheval Blanc that is so new the streets don’t have names, the driveways are made of gravel and grass hasn’t grown yet on the yards. I took a brief tour of the neighbourhood, noticed a lot of young families, many of Indian and south Asian descent.

I also noticed a lot of insects, reminding me that this development is encroaching on what was once their habitat.

Domaine des Brises

The Rapides du Cheval Blanc is one of the 10 Eco-territories on the island of Montreal, which some might assume to mean its territory is sacred and can’t be touched. But in 2007, the borough of Pierrefonds-Roxboro approved a development of 251 housing units (PDF), about half of which are in the form of single-family detached houses that all look alike. The developers had actually wanted to build 650 housing units, but pressure from the city forced them to scale back from 15 to 10 hectares. The revised project also talked a lot about “integrating” into the territory by using the same trees or something. Still, the development cut 21% of the green space out of the eco-territory.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 38

A riddle this time:

I affect every other that crosses me, but not necessarily every one I touch. And I’m the only one in Montreal that does this. Or at least I was before the merger.

What am I? What do I do to others? And who is the other that’s (kinda) like me?

UPDATE: Three of you independently got the first two right: It’s St. Laurent Blvd., which splits the island between East and West. Any streets that cross it (actually, any streets that can be found on both sides, whether or not they actually cross) get East and West designations. Those that are only on one side (even if they intersect St. Laurent) don’t have them.

UPDATE (June 2): Michel K gets the last part right: Gouin Blvd. in Roxboro splits three streets – 3rd Ave., 4th Ave. and 5th Ave. – into North and South. (Two others, 1st Ave. and 2nd Ave., have North designations but no southern counterpart.)

Kate also notes Montreal West, which is split North-South by the tracks.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 37

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 37

Where is this, and what is that blur on the left supposed to be?

UPDATE: Tony gets the location right. It’s the Mary, Queen of the World Cathedral at René-Lévesque and de la Cathédrale. And most of you correctly guessed that it’s a film shoot with Montreal standing in for New York City.

But Tony gets the film wrong. Any guesses?

UPDATE 2: John R. gets it right below. This was from the filming of The Last Templar, an NBC miniseries that began last night. The blur is a stunt performer pretending to be Mira Sorvino on horseback chasing some bad guys out of the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art. The scene, which took hours to film but only lasted a few seconds, was filmed late at night last May. I stumbled on it accidentally and took some pictures.

I equally stumbled on the show last night changing channels, and sadly got to it just a bit after this scene. I’d check it out on Hulu, but I don’t have access to that. I hope it turned out well.

What’s wrong with this picture

De Maisonneuve Blvd. U-turn

This photo was taken on de Maisonneuve Blvd. downtown. I’ll give you a moment to study it.

UPDATE: So plenty of you are smarter than this driver, pointing out that de Maisonneuve is a one-way street and he’s going the wrong way. The driver was heading west (the right way) toward a construction zone that narrowed the roadway, and inexplicably pulled a U-turn and headed east. Fortunately traffic was low and he turned down Bleury. Not sure if it ever occurred to him he was going the wrong way.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 34


In the unlikely event that this bridge were to suddenly collapse, which Montreal-adjacent island’s residents would be cut off from the rest of society?


UPDATE: Wow, got dozens of guesses on this one, most of which were right or almost right without giving the name of the island.

It is, indeed, Île Verte, a tiny island with two streets that forms part of les Îles Laval just east of Île Bizard. The bridge connects it to Île Bigras, which is more known for its commuter train station.

Île Verte isn’t labelled on Google Maps (which is why most people described it without naming it). It does show up on Mapquest though. Take that, Google!

Continue reading

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 33

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 33

This location is significant, but only if you prefer Google over Microsoft or AOL.


UPDATE (1:28pm): Quite a few of you got this one dead on, but Zain was the winner.

Welcome to Montreal

Welcome to Montreal

This is indeed the corner of St. Denis and Crémazie (or perhaps more accurately southbound Berri and westbound Crémazie), which according to Google Maps is the centre of Montreal.

AOL’s MapQuest places the centre on Berri St just above the Ville-Marie expressway (though, strangely, if you set Montreal as your default location, it centres it instead on Remembrance Road near Beaver Lake).

Microsoft’s Live Search Maps also uses Berri and the Ville-Marie, as does Yahoo! Maps.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 32

For those wondering, I’ve updated last week’s question with its answer. This one should be a bit easier for you Google Maps cheaters:

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 32

What is this street?

UPDATE: This one was solved in minutes by Tim below. It is, indeed, Thimens Blvd. in St. Laurent, looking north from Poirier to where the street develops a huge median for no apparent reason. Other than high-tension power lines, this stretch of land spanning five long blocks serves no purpose.

The image is taken from this video, one of many that chronicles the view from a window of a plane landing at Trudeau Airport.