Monday, March 17, 2014

How the Corktown Footbridge got its name

I know I just posted a blog post about the Corktown Footbridge, and I've previously covered the opening, but in honour of St. Patrick's Day—and my just-over-one-eighth Irish heritage—I'm reprinting the article I wrote in this month's issue of the Centretown Buzz, telling the story of my time on the naming committee for what is now the Corktown Footbridge.

Monday, March 10, 2014

An urban gas station in Centretown

The Petro Canada at Bronson and Somerset quietly reopened this past Friday after about six months of construction, which started shortly after the reopening of newly reconstructed Bronson Avenue. It comes complete with a convenience store at the corner, seen best at night in HDR.

Even though about three-quarters of Centretown residents walk, bus and bike as part of their regular commute to work and school, the car ownership rate in Centretown is about 1.3 cars per household. So when residents of Centretown, Chinatown and Dalhousie eventually have to fill their tanks, they have to go somewhere. After the closure of the Shell station at Gloucester, this station just on the far side of Centretown's Bronson border is one of the closest to downtown. (I'm not saying I regret the closure of the gas stations that used to pepper Centretown much more heavily!)

But just because a gas station is a car-oriented business, it doesn't mean it can't also fit into the fabric of a walkable urban neighbourhood. Before the construction photos, let's look at how the station used to look: