Tag Archives: Montreal Geography Trivia

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 83

Quebec once had a small village called Dixie.

Where is it now?

UPDATE: Enough of you were close that I’ll give it to you. Dixie was a small village (hamlet?) in the 19th century in what is now the lakeshore in western Lachine and eastern Dorval. It had a population of about 300 when it was made part of Lachine. You can see a map of it here from 1894, and another here from 1913 after it became part of Lachine. It only had two roads, Lakeshore Road (now St. Joseph Blvd.) and a “road to station”, which is now 55th Ave.

As Zeke points out below, the name remains in use as that of a small uninhabited island just offshore near where the old town was. And as Jean Naimard points out, there’s also a street in Lachine called Rue Dixie.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 80

The line formed by 55th Ave., Côte de Liesse (Highway 520), Highway 13, Côte Vertu Blvd., Sauvé St., and Pie-IX Blvd. represents what?

UPDATE: A bunch of you got this right, though NDGer was the first. It’s the border between the AMT’s Zones 1 and 2 (grey and pink on this map).

The AMT’s zoning system (where higher-numbered zones pay more to use commuter trains and multiple-network bus trips) is roughly based on the distance to downtown Montreal (assuming that everyone is travelling downtown to work, which of course isn’t always the case).

There are some quirks though, for example Lachine is considered Zone 1 while Longueuil, which is much closer to downtown, is Zone 3. Similarly, Kahnawake (Zone 5) is closer than Pointe-Claire (Zone 2), and most of the Zone 8 territories are closer than Rigaud (Zone 6), though that won’t matter once Rigaud loses its train service on July 1.

Thanks to SMS for this week’s question.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 76

What does this childish scribble of a drawing represent?

UPDATE: Steve Hatton needed only seven minutes to get this one. These lines represent the redesign of de Maisonneuve Blvd. between St. Laurent and St. Urbain.

De Maisonneuve Blvd., looking west toward Clark St.

As of a few months ago, drivers (and cyclists) heading west no longer have a gradual curve that takes them around Place des Arts, but rather a stop sign and hard right onto Clark before they turn left back onto de Maisonneuve. This new layout gives more space for building construction nearby, but also reduces the speed of traffic.

In order to accommodate all the cars, the direction of Clark (a one-way street) is reversed between de Maisonneuve and … uhh … de Maisonneuve. This effectively reserves that stretch of road for drivers heading west on de Maisonneuve.

A little history

The path of de Maisonneuve Blvd. in this area is a bit strange, particularly because it curves upward to run right next to Ontario St. The path is entirely a result of the path of the green line of the metro between St. Laurent and Place des Arts stations. Before the metro’s construction, de Maisonneuve Blvd. didn’t exist. What we now know as that boulevard was a handful of unconnected roads, including de Montigny St. (everything east of St. Laurent), the last bit of which (the lower red portion in the image at top) has been removed with this redesign.

UPDATE (June 9): It’s been pointed out below that a tiny stretch of de Montigny still exists, between Clark and St. Urbain, under this new design.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 75

What – and where – is this?

UPDATE (April 27): John is the first to get this right below: This is the inside of what used to be a bus shelter on Pie-IX Blvd., specifically the one at Jarry St.

I didn’t know it when I posted this question, but it’s actually somewhat of a trick one. You see, the objects in this photograph aren’t there anymore.

Continue reading

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 73

Back to transit this week, on a suggestion from reader Zain Farookhi:

What bus stop is shared between the most bus lines?

(Note that for the purposes of this question, a terminal with multiple stops is not considered one stop.)

UPDATE: Steve Hatton is the first to get the right answer.

STM bus stop at René-Lévesque and Mansfield (westbound)

This stop at René-Lévesque Blvd. and Mansfield (that’s the Queen Elizabeth Hotel in the background) has 10 bus lines serving it as of March 29:

Of those 10 routes, two are less than a month old and two others are less than two years old. Before last week, the answer would have been (unless I’m mistaken) the stop at Brunswick Blvd. and St. John’s Blvd. outside the Fairview mall in the West Island, which is served by nine routes all coming out of the terminal.

Kellergraham points out an alternative that also has 10 routes serving it.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 72

What is this a rough sketch of?

UPDATE: Cool Fat Michael gets on the right track, and SMS nails it: This is the border between Dollard des Ormeaux (above) and Pierrefonds (below, as it existed before municipal mergers). The gap represents Roxboro, which had been merged with Dollard in the Montreal merger, but was split and re-merged with Pierrefonds after Dollard demerged.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 71

In 1926, the city of Montreal made a request of the city of Verdun related to the latter city’s geography.

Verdun politely declined, and turned around and suggested the city of Montreal do the same.

What was it?

UPDATE: William Moss got it right on the first shot: Montreal wanted Verdun to rename Church St., because there was already a Church St. in Montreal and they were worried about confusion. Verdun said its Church St. was bigger than Montreal’s and suggested the bigger city change the name of its smaller street if it cared so much.

Of course, Church St. in Verdun is now called de l’Église.

But, for an extra point, what became of Church St. in Montreal?

Montreal’s Church St. was renamed shortly after Verdun’s response. The downtown street, which runs only from Sherbrooke to Ontario, was renamed in 1927 after John Wodehouse, count of Kimberley, on the 25th anniversary of his death.

Though it is now part of UQAM’s downtown campus and closed to traffic, Rue Kimberley still exists.

Montreal Geography Trivia No. 70

What is the significance of these numbers:

45, 100, 131, 132, 159, 171, 179, 197, 221, 505

UPDATE: It took a day, but two of you (plam and Kaycee) got it within minutes of each other: These are STM bus routes that end at a métro station and share the same name.

From contributor and transit geek Shanake Seneviratne:

The practice of placing a bus route’s ultimate terminus on the destination sign is not one that has been adopted by the STM. Unlike other systems that indicate the endpoints of a route (Laval, Longueuil, Ottawa, and Toronto all do good jobs with their destination signs), Montreal has adopted a “dominant street or neighbourhood” naming policy. While this works well in principle, in actual fact this can backfire. The 168, for example, hasn’t served Cité du Havre proper in decades. The 460 doesn’t go on the Métropolitaine but rather parallel to it. The 215 is more deserving of the title Brunswick than the 208 is!

With new buses with excellent capabilities with regard to their destination sign, the STM can surely be more flexible and proactive.

Of course, most of these buses are actually named for the streets that the métro stations are named after, but there’s an interesting debate on what names bus routes should take.

Maybe it’s just because I’m so used to the Montreal system, but I tend to like it for the most part. It runs into trouble when routes don’t take any particular street for very long. Naming buses for their destination assumes that people are going to that destination. While métro stations and terminuses are certainly big draws for transit users, they’re not the destination for all.

Besides, with maps at most bus stops now, and the increasing use of smartphones to get information on the go, the importance of the name of a bus route has diminished.