Walk # 14 – The Point

“To lose yourself: a voluptuous surrender, lost in your arms, lost to the world, utterly immersed in what is present so that its surroundings fade away. In Benjamin’s terms, to be lost is to be fully present, and to be fully present is to be capable of being in uncertainty and mystery.”
Rebecca Solnit, A Field Guide to Getting Lost

Decided I would walk every street in Pointe Saint Charles and knowing it could not be done in one walk, at least not at the pace I prefer, I decided that I would begin by walking the periphery.

Started at Charlevoix Metro.

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Heading west on Centre, social housing besides the Metro.

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Bixi stand.

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As I like to point out, there are endless variations upon the typical in Montreal.

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One of the distinctive features of housing in the Point is that there are a lot of these one step and in entrances, much unlike the traditional walk up to a balcony we usually find in this city.

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The contemporary triplex.

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Not sure about this first building but I do know that the one behind it was part of the Sherwin Williams factory complex.

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Looking between the two buildings. The building in the background is another Sherwin Williams building that was an empty shell for at least 10 years.

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I walked in to get a better view.

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Here is a low rez image of the way that building looked in the late 80’s and into the 90’s. (I have a beautifully framed high rez  20″x 24″ version of this for sale if it interests you).

SW shell

And a view from the building across which was bricked in but basically abandoned during the same period..You can see the construction of a new neighborhood at ground level.

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Recently renovated property. It’s been enjoyable to  observe this renovation as it is located on one of my regular walking routes.

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Facade.

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Sculpture at Centre and Atwater.

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Vehicle heading in to the Atwater Tunnel.

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Nostalgic and weird to view two buildings I have explored back in the day, thinking I may have peed in what is your living room today.

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The view towards Verdun.

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Heading back (the true start of doing the periphery). There is baseball every night, it seems, at Parc D’Argenson.

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Mixed softball is the best!

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Good crowds, bbqs, great community spirit.

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Weird fenced off square with a little tank thing in the middle.

 

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Moving on. That upper balcony looks like about the last place I would want to be on a hot sunny summer day.

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Another former corner business no doubt.

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A look back across the park.

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Low cost housing that went up in the early 80’s.

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Bus stop with parking restricted.

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On d’Argenson looking towards Verdun.

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Going to turn left on Butler. This blog makes an excellent argument about how May street in Verdun could have been saved if the extra wide Butler street in the Point had been utilized.

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Transportation yard, probably shared between highway and railway,or is this the place where the twain don’t meet?

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While most of the Point’s industrial heyday is gone, there are still some factories and small shops around. Lauzon Meats.

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Not sure what this is…

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Looking up at some railroad stuff.

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Looking back at a passenger train rolling through.

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Going for the pretty.

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Seems laughably impotent this little trailer sporting the name of a huge development corporation (often associated with corruption) to be sitting here in the relative middle of nowhere with a Denver Boot on it.

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Parc Sammy Hill.

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Just some geometry.

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Not sure what this side of the park is meant for, not even closed off well enough to be a true dog run.

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Interesting building on the corner of Coleraine.

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Happy face says something like smile, you are on camera.

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At Wellington, looking towards Verdun.

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Corner of Butler and Wellington, Pub St. Charles,  but it was forever known as the Pall Mall Tavern, and was the first stop for thirsty walkers coming out of dry Verdun.

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The old and the new. Building on the right at Charlevoix and Wellington was an Esso gas station for decades.

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And this factory to my right was once Dominion Glass, one of the top employers in the Point along with The Northern, CNR, and Redpath. And check out those links, these were all major corporations founded in Montreal. Now Domglas is owned by some American company.

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Well, here’s your architecture on Wellington east of Charlevoix but that garbage can taped to the pole kind of steals the show.

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Parc Marguerite Bourgeoys ahead.

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Turning on Rue des Filles du Roy. Half assed corporate greenwashing?

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Movie set stuff been there a while.

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On the right side, lots of glass.

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This was strange, I leaned over and looked in and could not see any reason why this section of fence needed a tent over it.

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Factory with tented fence.

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At the top of the street the tracks are the border between the Point and the river. Add a  freeway and some industrial parks and it becomes impossible. The Point got screwed out of its natural relationship to the Saint Lawrence starting with the railroad then the freeway.

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Heading east on the north end of the park, big old trees.

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Rear view of the Marguerite Bourgeoys house.

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There are activities there all year round but the summer allows the 17th century in Montreal to be reenacted outside on the grounds.

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Close up.

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Parc Le Ber.

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Kind of nice along here.

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It is zoomed a bit but this gives you perspective for how close this area is to downtown.

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The symmetry of bleachers.

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The Point, like Verdun, was a serious sports town back in the day and it’s not always clear that that was the case anymore.

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Dog run. But it is a hike for most people in The Point.
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The “Y” on Ash.

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Daycare.

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Entrance to the Via Rail facility.

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View on Dick Irvin.

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Almost pretty except there is a major rail yard on the other side of those trees.

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Compost heap?

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Making the space work.

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Apartments on Charon.

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Chair locked to railing.

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Two very wide apart staircases yet I am struck by the convergence in the middle.

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Turning on Le Ber, named for a friend of Margarite Bourgeoys .

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The contemporaneous.

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Old CNR office building.

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Taking their time on this one. Back in January or February on a stroll through here this building under construction was the inspiration for one of my early “Dirt” pictures.

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Here is my version from last winter.

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Lot at the corner of Le Ber and Sebastopol is for sale.

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On the west side of Sebastopol is this new bike path (apparently) being built.

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Further down, sprinklers sprinkling.

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Jardins des Voisins, really old tree.

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Wall on last row house.

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Another look.

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Decoration on Sebastopol Row.

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Old structure at the corner of Favard.

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Almost rural.

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Looking back at the path (I look like a tree stump).

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Looking towards downtown and Old Montreal.

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Coming around to Parc de la Congregation. “C’est à la demande du “Regroupement des citoyens de Pointe Saint Charles” que ce nom fut donné au parc situé sur l’emplacement de l’ église St. Matthews (1858). Found here.

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Lots of fruit on those trees.

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Turning east on Wellington.

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Corner of rue de la Sucurie (formerly Richmond). That building held the Sports Tavern owned by Ambrose Karwatski (sp?) up until the 70’s when it would go on to be known as The Palamino, a biker bar.  Like most taverns in the Point back in the day, its back door opened at 7am to accommodate thirsty workers who had finished the night shift.

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Looking back, train crossing Wellington.

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Front view of the old Sports Tavern/Palamino.

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Ivy.

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Looking down Mullins from where it meets Wellington.

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Freight yards. When I was a kid there was a truck backed up to every one of those doors.

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Must have been a bank. Grand Trunk and Conde.

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Square Tansey.

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Wellington and Bridge.

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And from the other side of Bridge looking in the same direction.

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The Wellington Tunnel used to be here but it was replaced by a bridge. Griffintown is on the other side.

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They call this green space along the canal Square Saint Patrick.

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Heading south on Saint Patrick.

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*Abuse is everywhere*

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Mural.

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Doorway on Saint Columban.

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Murals along the side of Terragon.

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View of Downtown from the foot of Saint Columban.

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Looking west.

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From the end of Bridge.

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Closed for renovations.

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The Redpath Silos.

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There is a rock climbing business pretty much embedded into the silos.

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Redpath condos.

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Forever known as The Shearer Street Building of Northern Electric, this building is now called Le Nordelec. Legend had it that this was the largest building in the British Empire at the time it was built.

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Underground parking and a spot for your boat!

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Facadism.

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Des Seigneurs street bridge.

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Well known building/business along the canal.

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A strip of Saint Patrick is torn up but I can walk through anyway.

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Flowers at the foot of Island street.

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Familiar story this summer.

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Seen better days.

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Coming up on the brasserie Capri.

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Surrounded. Hope it hasn’t hurt the business too much.

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At least they can get in and out.

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You see a lot of this walkway type thing in the city today. Interestingly, it’s with residential buildings now whereas in the past you only saw this type of thing in industrial buildings and it was usually connecting buildings that were separated by a street.

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Not sure what this building used to be but I have to admit, bricks rule!!

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Small local business. It may not look like it on the surface, so to speak, but there are a lot more cars in this area than there used to be and, let’s face it, some parts of town are not well served by public transit even if this particular part of The Point is close to a Metro station.

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And once again we see the legendary brasserie that I boycotted for roughly 40 years. Why? The owner became a city councilor and lobbied to have a by-law that prohibited anyone from opening a new bar in The Point. You could grandfather an old, already existing bar, but you could not open anything new anywhere. And I still say the choice of the Metro location in the Point ( just down the street from this joint) had more to do with pulling strings at city hall than being a truly practical consideration of transit needs in The Point. You are going to have one Metro station and you pretty much build it as far away from the majority of the population as possible but as close as possible to the one bar in town who has worked hard to stop other bars from opening? Right.

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Charlevoix bridge.

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The canal park, Atwater Market in the background.

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Park still under construction.

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Foot bridge that goes over to Atwater Market.

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Running out of room down here.

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Standing atop the Atwater Tunnel.

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Contemporary marketing, heritage, and interesting lighting.

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Well, you know we are just about done when you see this building again.

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And this.

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Still playing…

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This building has been unfinished for at least 8 months.

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A final look at a building I seem to be obsessed with but it’s only because I explored it as a shell.

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Heading up Saint Charles street.

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Nice little house.

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Turn right on Charlevoix and it seems the Metro is calling my name.

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Another fascinating walk through Canadian history! It’s true, if you really take a look at all the links and follow some references that may work for you, you will find yourself inevitably learning something, and I am not at all bitter about the non existent wages I receive to bring this to you ( LOL) . It’s my pleasure. Until the next time, take care!!🙂

Walk # 14

 

3 responses to “Walk # 14 – The Point

  1. Pingback: Walk # 15 – The Point Part 2 | PostArctica·

  2. Love your walks. There’s always something interesting on the streets that you find and bring out to the reader. Keep on keepin’ on!

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