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Sunday , 26 March 2017

Monthly Archives: July 2014

Canadians optimistic about housing; Fitch, not so much

Home sales across Canada were 11.2 per cent higher in June than they were one year ago, the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) reports. From May to June the rise in national sales was 0.8 per cent, the fifth consecutive monthly increase. Home sales reached their highest level in more than four years. Year-over-year sales were up in about three-quarters of all local markets, especially in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, Hamilton-Burlington and Montreal. CREA’s national sales-to-new-listings ratio came in at 53.6 per cent in June, slightly higher than in May but still “well entrenched” within the 40–60 range that defines a balanced market. About half of local markets were within balanced ... Read More »

Building green makes sense on so many levels

If there’s one thing we can all agree on, it must be that more green space in the city is a good thing. The ecological, environmental, economic and cultural benefits of urban green space are too numerous to list here, but the most obvious social benefits bear repeating: parks and public green spaces, no matter how small, provide places for people to meet, play, rest, be silent or gregarious, think, take part in their community life and just enjoy. A recently completed seventeen-year study of 5.000 households in Britain found that living near green space in a city was good for people’s mental and physical health. Other studies have shown ... Read More »

Factory farming Japanese style: LED lights and lettuce

Any agricultural system that can increase the productivity of the land 100-fold, reduce water consumption by 99 per cent and produce a superior crop, regardless of the weather, is definitely revolutionary. People have been growing plants and even food crops in greenhouses for a long time now, but a Japanese venture called Mirai has developed what could be the most productive indoor farm yet. The man who started it believes it is the real beginning of the industrialization of agriculture. Using LED lighting that was specially developed for the purpose by GE,  Japanese “plant physiologist” Shigeharu Shimamura is now doing industrial-scale farming in a former electronics factory. It is the ... Read More »

TV in the connected age: viewers want more

We may not watch TV the way we used to, but we definitely still watch. If anything, TV is more important than ever. We love it so much that we demand to have it whenever we want to watch our favourite programs. Don’t tell us we have to wait: we want it now. And don’t be surprised if we don’t give TV our undivided attention. We are living, after all, the connected life. If we want to screen stack and multi-task, do a little shopping while we view, while texting friends and checking out a different program on the laptop, that’s just the way it is. The really good news ... Read More »

City Council approves new Gehry buildings for King Street

Toronto moved a step closer to having two more buildings by one of the world’s most famous architects and native son, Frank Gehry. City Council voted today to support Toronto Planning staff’s recommendations to approve an application plan for the King Street West development. The development is a collaboration between David Mirvish Enterprises, which owns the land, and the Los Angeles-based Gehry. His last major work in the city was the redesign of the Art Gallery of Ontario. A release following the vote said that the Mirvish/Gehry development team has worked for nearly two years “in an iterative and collaborative design and urban planning exercise” with the city and local ... Read More »

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