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Old 03-02-2012, 06:22 PM
 
Location: Montreal
160 posts, read 150,608 times
Reputation: 207
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayo2k View Post
Yes montreal feel very provincial, you don't realy feel like you are in a big city when you are in Montreal (although that its size is larger than paris which is 105km² & Montreal is 366km².
Talking only about diversity, Montreal is more diverse than those cities.
Some other observations regarding provinciality that may be not obvious if you just compare by sheer statistics.

1) It's not about population size only, but it's also distances and accessibility of other places. It's just over 500km to the real cosmopolitan city on this continent (New York), but it's such a hassle to get there-- if you don't want to drive it's either $500 flight at best or 12 hours in archaic train moving 50 km/h on average with 1-2 hour stop at the border to check your id.

In Europe you can get a cheap ticket on a regional airline and be in a different country in 1-2 hours. Low cost and accessibility of travel add to people's exposure to different cultures and general erudition.

2) Diversity makes sense when it allows cultures to be prominent and flourish. When it's just lots of scared poor people from all over who gather in one place looking for jobs or welfare and living in their ghettos it makes little sense. Montreal is diverse for Canada, but still not to much to talk about. Restaurant scene is nothing special here, it's even more interesting in smaller places like Vancouver.

3) City architecture and planning. For a city of 1.6 million and urban area of about 3.5 million the city and its center feel smallish. St. Catherine's street is the main street in Montreal, but it has just about 2.5 meters width of walkable area and is so crowded on weekends you can barely walk without bumping into someone. I mean they had so much space in Canada why did they have to crowd all the buildings in one place like this?

There are virtually no public spaces in center. Where are all the plazas or boulevards where you could go for a walk at evening or on a weekend just to meet the people and enjoy the city? If you're in downtown Montreal you basically have to walk straight, then take 90 degree turn to this street, then 90 degree turn to that street and so on. It's just something hard to really enjoy. Similar-sized European cities like Munich for example have huge walk-only central streets, numerous squares, open air skating rings, street vendors, events and lots of other stuff in the center. Montreal seems like it has grown from a small medieval settlement directly into a large North American city and it feels provincial.

 
Old 03-02-2012, 06:52 PM
 
199 posts, read 288,155 times
Reputation: 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheTourist View Post
Some other observations regarding provinciality that may be not obvious if you just compare by sheer statistics.

1) It's not about population size only, but it's also distances and accessibility of other places. It's just over 500km to the real cosmopolitan city on this continent (New York), but it's such a hassle to get there-- if you don't want to drive it's either $500 flight at best or 12 hours in archaic train moving 50 km/h on average with 1-2 hour stop at the border to check your id.

In Europe you can get a cheap ticket on a regional airline and be in a different country in 1-2 hours. Low cost and accessibility of travel add to people's exposure to different cultures and general erudition.

2) Diversity makes sense when it allows cultures to be prominent and flourish. When it's just lots of scared poor people from all over who gather in one place looking for jobs or welfare and living in their ghettos it makes little sense. Montreal is diverse for Canada, but still not to much to talk about. Restaurant scene is nothing special here, it's even more interesting in smaller places like Vancouver.

3) City architecture and planning. For a city of 1.6 million and urban area of about 3.5 million the city and its center feel smallish. St. Catherine's street is the main street in Montreal, but it has just about 2.5 meters width of walkable area and is so crowded on weekends you can barely walk without bumping into someone. I mean they had so much space in Canada why did they have to crowd all the buildings in one place like this?

There are virtually no public spaces in center. Where are all the plazas or boulevards where you could go for a walk at evening or on a weekend just to meet the people and enjoy the city? If you're in downtown Montreal you basically have to walk straight, then take 90 degree turn to this street, then 90 degree turn to that street and so on. It's just something hard to really enjoy. Similar-sized European cities like Munich for example have huge walk-only central streets, numerous squares, open air skating rings, street vendors, events and lots of other stuff in the center. Montreal seems like it has grown from a small medieval settlement directly into a large North American city and it feels provincial.
to reach nyc from montreal is not painfull... haven't you heard of greyhound? & nyc is not the only "true northe american cosmopolitain city"... Haven't your heard of Toronto, LA, San Francisco...
Scare poor people looking for welfare... obviously you don't know paris & london.. both are full of people looking for "assedic, APL & RSA" in paris & "Income support & housing benefit" in london...
i agree that montreal haven't got a world class avenue or place like dundas square, picadilly circus, times square...
places where you can lmeet people at night? Well, st denis street & part of ontario street
st cattherine... i know it is a joke...
For munich i can't speak about because i only know france, belgium & england. Oxford street for instance... great for shopping but crowded as hell & very tiny... just long tiny road.

In europe you can get in another country in a couple of hours because it is small... north america is so big, you can't compare this... cheap? What about the toronto-washington for just $1 when you order at the right time...?
but the topic was about being cosmopolitain... & i suggest you to go outside old montreal to feel the culture... caraibean restaurant, afro nightclub, the haitian vibe ect... while in paris if you are black & not famous you can't do basicaly nothing, you won't get in a club, won't have good sit in restaurant (they will tell you that there is no avaiable sit while 30 seconds later, 2 whiite dudes comes & will get window sit...) I know since i'm black & grew up in france...
 
Old 03-02-2012, 07:43 PM
 
14,756 posts, read 13,334,741 times
Reputation: 8070
Quote:
Originally Posted by jayo2k View Post
Montreal is 365.13km²
Paris is 105.4km²
Most people think Montreal is smaller because they ttend to stay only in downtown & old montreal
Thank you for this information, though I have to make a mental conversion into square miles. I never knew Paris was THAT much smaller than Montreal. True, Montreal occupies the eastern 1/2 to 2/3 of Montreal Island, more or less. The city goes all the way out to the eastern tip of Montreal Island, if I recall.

Also, did not know the relative population density of Paris and Montreal was THAT different. Montreal still feels pretty dense - in Cote des Neiges, around Hochelaga, and even north of Little Italy. I know that, on the Plateau, it is NEVER easy to find parking for a restaurant. So much of the housing stock in Montreal is townhomes or walk-up flats, most of which do not have parking in an alley behind, that parking is a hassle all over.

It's actually a great blend of provincial and cosmopolitan qualities. That's also part of its charm. Montreal is for everyone. It doesn't feel exclusive like Paris, where I think achieving a good QOL for many people is not easy (i.e. constant unrest in the suburbs near CDG). Montreal is real user friendly, and the only privileged areas that immediately come to mind are the high rises and townhomes around McGill and Westmount, though there are others. I heard there is a new wave of French arrivals looking for a better life than Europe has to offer, complaining only about the harsher winter.
 
Old 03-02-2012, 07:52 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
9,107 posts, read 9,384,298 times
Reputation: 3451
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheTourist View Post
Restaurant scene is nothing special here, it's even more interesting in smaller places like Vancouver.

l.
You are entitled to your opinion, but I doubt most people would agree with this.
 
Old 03-02-2012, 08:15 PM
 
199 posts, read 288,155 times
Reputation: 85
Quote:
Originally Posted by robertpolyglot View Post
Thank you for this information, though I have to make a mental conversion into square miles. I never knew Paris was THAT much smaller than Montreal. True, Montreal occupies the eastern 1/2 to 2/3 of Montreal Island, more or less. The city goes all the way out to the eastern tip of Montreal Island, if I recall.

Also, did not know the relative population density of Paris and Montreal was THAT different. Montreal still feels pretty dense - in Cote des Neiges, around Hochelaga, and even north of Little Italy. I know that, on the Plateau, it is NEVER easy to find parking for a restaurant. So much of the housing stock in Montreal is townhomes or walk-up flats, most of which do not have parking in an alley behind, that parking is a hassle all over.

It's actually a great blend of provincial and cosmopolitan qualities. That's also part of its charm. Montreal is for everyone. It doesn't feel exclusive like Paris, where I think achieving a good QOL for many people is not easy (i.e. constant unrest in the suburbs near CDG). Montreal is real user friendly, and the only privileged areas that immediately come to mind are the high rises and townhomes around McGill and Westmount, though there are others. I heard there is a new wave of French arrivals looking for a better life than Europe has to offer, complaining only about the harsher winter.
As a french citizen myself i can tell you that lot & lot of french people are coming to montreal for a better living. In france there s basicaly nothing left, very high livng cost, very high housing, gas price, low salary, no job... You don't feel like you are going somewhere in France anymore...
For the density, montreal look more like london, paris since it is so small but has more people than the entire montreal island, the density is very high, about 30 000 people per square km (sorry, not so good with miles). Côte des neiges (where i lived) is dense but still lot of space, you are not in tiny appartment like in paris.. you have lot of parcs, large roads ect.

but true the winter... although for some strange reason you don't feel the cold as bad as you do in paris, what 's bad is its lenght... 2 months of cold... (late december until mid february... after that it's cold but not harsh)
 
Old 03-02-2012, 08:23 PM
 
Location: Mexico City (Montreal soon!)
179 posts, read 199,269 times
Reputation: 147
Quote:
Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
You are entitled to your opinion, but I doubt most people would agree with this.
+1

If Montreal is famous for something, it's for its restaurant scene.
 
Old 03-02-2012, 08:43 PM
 
14,756 posts, read 13,334,741 times
Reputation: 8070
Quote:
Originally Posted by MexiQuebecois View Post
+1

If Montreal is famous for something, it's for its restaurant scene.
Considered the 2nd best gastronomic city in North America, after New York.
Don't know where I read this, but it remained with me.
 
Old 03-02-2012, 09:26 PM
 
14,756 posts, read 13,334,741 times
Reputation: 8070
French cuisine is expensive, but I'd bet Montreal is better.
Italian cuisine. In the mid-price range, Vancouver has LaRocca. Metro Montreal has many!
Greek cuisine. In the mid-price range, Vancouver has Kalamata, Stephos, a few others. Metro Montreal has many!
Portuguese cuisine. Vancouver has PCOV - Portuguese Club of Vancouver. Montreal has Chez Doval and Cafe Ferreira (which is fine dining), maybe more.

I just don't think Vancouver is there yet. Pas encore.

Last edited by sunshineleith; 03-06-2012 at 03:07 AM.. Reason: removed orphaned material
 
Old 03-02-2012, 09:29 PM
 
Location: Mexico City (Montreal soon!)
179 posts, read 199,269 times
Reputation: 147
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheTourist View Post
Maybe you meant some list like this, but Vancouver itself and its restaurant scene experience huge growth in the recent years which cannot be said about Montreal, seems like Vancouver is a top destination for people with money, so there's no surprise. There are lots of new interesting places popping up there as we speak while Montreal stays in the old world.
Says who? Montreal is consistently ranked among the best food cities in the world, and yes I agree that Vancouver is doing great, but it's still not at the level of Montréal for a great culinary experience.

20 Best Food Cities | Food & Wine

Best food cities in the U.S. and Canada - TripAdvisor

Vancouver is a great city, and perhaps the best place to experience Asian cuisine, but to say that Montreal is stuck in the past when it comes to restaurants is outrageous.
 
Old 03-02-2012, 09:39 PM
 
Location: Gatineau, Québec
9,107 posts, read 9,384,298 times
Reputation: 3451
Also, Montreal is probably the most locally innovative and unique city in Canada when it comes to cuisine. Modern Québécois chefs like Louis-François Marcotte, Daniel Vézina and several others don't really have any equivalents with similar influence and star power in other Canadian cities.
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