the definitive Prince Edward Island blogroll since 2004.

Welcome to PEI Blogs, an aggregator of weblogs (blogs), news feeds, and tweets about or located in Prince Edward Island (PEI), Canada. Email me (link below) to add or change sites. Click on the black subject link to expand an entry, or the red blog name link to go to the entry in the blog. Click on the Sources links below to view an entire blog.

PEI Blogs is provided as a public service on a non-profit basis. Information comes from individual websites, through RSS syndication, and from a Twitter list, and is displayed automatically by PEI Blogs, who have no control over information posted. Opinions expressed by posters are not those of PEI Blogs. Information posted will not be suitable for all readers, or all age groups. Sites may portray themselves as objective, but present a very biased point of view. Please make your own decisions as to the objectivity of any site or post.

- Derek MacEwen, PEI Blogs Aggregator

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Aggregation of selected recently-updated blogs, news feeds and tweets:

Wednesday January 18, 2017

17:01 Transferware Tea in the Sunroom »Aiken House & Gardens
15:39 [URBAN NOTE] "Requiem for Hugh’s Room: Much-loved folkie venue a victim of cash-flow problems" »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)
Brad Wheeler's feature in The Globe and Mail about the fate of Hugh's Room reads like an elegy to this much-appreciated venue.

Richard Carson stands outside Hugh’s Room, having a smoke and talking about the specialness of his west-end music venue that now is in limbo because of financial problems.

“What I wanted to do here was to create a place where artists wanted to play, where staff wanted to work and where music fans wanted to be,” he says, looking off at the grey sky. “Some nights, I would stand back and watch those three things come together, and, I tell you, it was magical to see.”

With that, Mr. Carson, who opened the city’s premier folk club in 2001, shakes his head worryingly and stubs out his cigarette.

Just then, a friend who’s chipped in to fix an electrical problem in the building steps outside and pats Mr. Carson on the back as he walks by. “Hang in there, Richard,” he says. “Hang in there.”

The club owner laughs softly to himself. Hang in there? He’s been doing exactly that for nearly 16 years.
15:36 [URBAN NOTE] On Jim Karygiannis' call for a foreign buyers tax in Toronto »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)
CBC News' John Reiti reported on Toronto city councilor Jim Karygiannis' call for a tax to be levied on foreign buyers of Toronto real estate.

A Toronto councillor is renewing calls to implement a foreign buyers tax to cool down the city's red-hot real estate market.

Coun. Jim Karygiannis, who held a Thursday news conference alongside a McMaster University economist, has sent a letter to Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne asking for permission to slap a five-per-cent tax on foreign buyers.

Ontario has balked at the idea of taxing foreign buyers over concerns that such a tax could significantly hurt the value of homes that people already own. The province is also keeping an eye on Vancouver's market, where a 15 per cent foreign buyers tax came into effect on Aug. 2, 2016.

"We're not taxing our own folks," Karygiannis told reporters at city hall.

Torontoist has pointed out that even if this tax achieves its limited goal of cooling down the market, it cannot be the only response.

Some real estate groups in the city have come out against implementing a tax here, warning that a “knee-jerk” reaction isn’t the answer. And that might be the case, but if a move like this might prevent Toronto market from reaching the absurd levels Vancouver has seen in recent years—where seven-figure prices on real estate are the norm—it could be worth looking into.

So many Torontonians are already priced out of home ownership, and it’s worth considering all options to make sure the situation doesn’t get worse. But a tax won’t fix everything: there are bigger issues to consider in the landscape of Toronto’s unaffordable housing situation. If imposing a new tax will alleviate some of the pressure, it could decrease housing demand, but it doesn’t solve the supply side of the problem. City Council needs to commit to more than just asking the provincial government to deal with it, and no one policy is going to solve an issue as nuanced as housing affordability.
15:32 [URBAN NOTE] "Why today might be the best day to buy a Toronto-area house" »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)
If Tess Kalinowski's reported analysis of patterns of real estate transactions in Toronto over the calendar year is correct, I may have missed my chance to buy a house yesterday.

The choice of homes may be limited in the dead of winter, but consumers waiting for the hot spring market should know that January actually provides the best chance for snagging a bargain.

Seven years of sales data on about 650,000 Toronto-area transactions, shows Tuesday is probably the day this year when buyers will pay the least for a home, according to an analysis by TheRedPin real estate brokerage.

That's because there is residual inventory — homes that didn't sell in October and November, sometimes because they were over-priced, said Tarik Gidamy, co-founder and broker of record with TheRedPin.

"(Sellers) who are desperate — who have bought a house already and need to sell what they've got — are willing to take a cheaper price simply because the supply of buyers is not 100 per cent there yet," he said.

Based on the seven-year averages, TheRedPin found that Toronto-area homes in January sold for nearly $70,000 less, compared to the spring housing market, which peaks in May.
15:30 [URBAN NOTE] "Analysis of 514 Cherry Service for December 2016" »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)
Steve Munro's analysis of traffic and scheduling patterns on the 514 Cherry route is not flattering for the TTC. Functionally, it is less an independent route and more a somewhat exotic variation on the King line.

The 514 Cherry car has been running since June 2016. Although originally planned as a net new service, budget for the route fell victim to the 2016 round in which headroom for the “new” service was created by reallocating vehicles from 504 King. The purpose was to concentrate service on the central part of King where there is higher demand, but in practice, the original schedule did not work out. In November 2016 the headways on 514 Cherry were widened to compensate for longer-than-planned running times.

The 514 Cherry car has been something of an afterthought for the TTC in several ways. Planning and construction for it began years ago, but implementation was delayed until after the Pan Am Games were out of the way and the Canary District began to populate with residents and students in the new buildings. Another major blow has been the failure to build the Waterfront East LRT which is intended to eventually connect with the trackage on Cherry Street as part of a larger network. In effect, the spur to Distillery Loop is treated by the TTC as little more than a place for a scheduled short turn of the King Street service, much as trackage on Dufferin Street south of King is for the route’s western terminus.

Riders bound for the Distillery District face two challenges. One is that the older streetcars do not have route signs for 514 Cherry, only a small dashboard card wrapped over the “short turn” sign. Tourists might be forgiven for wondering if a 514 Cherry will ever show up. As new streetcars gradually appear on this route, this problem will decline, but it is an indication of the half-hearted way service was introduced that good signage was not part of the scheme.
15:19 PEI Status of Women’s Executive Meets in Summerside »Women's Equality PEI
The Executive Committee and staff of the PEI Advisory Council on the Status of Women met last week in Summerside. In addition to discussing Council business, members had a chance to meet with Melissa Smith, recent winner of the Diane Kays Memorial bursary. In the photo from left to right are Melissa Mullen, Treasurer from […]
15:00 A scary time in Quintana Roo: violence rocks Cancun »John Cairns Blog
As you surely know by now, back in November I was in sunny, plus-30 Celsius Cancun, Mexico on vacation. I did plenty of shopping, ate at a lot of good restaurants and watched countless football games on TV in the sports bars. All in all, a really good week.  Unfortunately, it looks like I will […]
12:30 [URBAN NOTE] "Failing Presto fare gates madden passengers" »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)
Ben Spurr Toronto Star article is frustrating, especially after my experience in Montréal with the STM smartcards. Why is this technology so impossible to implement?

Jerzy Jarmasz was on track to have his son at school on time when the pair arrived at Dufferin subway station Monday morning.

But there was just one problem: when they tried to leave by the Russett Ave. exit, the one closest to the school, they couldn’t get out.

Bothof the new Presto smart-card-enabled fare gates that the TTC recently installed there were out of order and would not open.

[. . .]

According to TTC spokesperson Heather Brown, there are now 376 fare gates at 41 of the agency’s subway stations, and about 12 per cent of them don’t work at any given time.

That’s an improvement from November, when about 18 per cent of the gates were offline at any given moment.

Brown said various problems can cause the gates to fail unexpectedly. The figures also include a small number of gates that are deliberately taken offline, she said.
12:19 [BLOG] Some Wednesday links »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)

  • Bad Astronomy's Phil Plait mourns the death of Apollo astronaut Gene Cernan and calls for a return to the Moon.

  • Beyond the Beyond's Bruce Sterling wonders what future historiography will look like when it's assumed that British imperialism in South Asia was a bad thing.

  • blogTO highlights an impressive new condo tower planned for Mississauga.

  • D-Brief looks at how a literal heartbeat can transform the perception of an individual by race.

  • The Dragon's Gaze links to a paper examining the potential for exoplanets orbiting red dwarfs to be habitable, finding that there seem to be no deal-breakers.

  • Language Hat shares the reflections of Russian-born author Boris Fishman who reads his novel, written in English, translated into the Russian.

  • Lawyers, Guns and Money links to a paper looking at the potential for industrial espionage to actually pay off.

  • The LRB Blog considers what will happen to Cuban migration now that Cuban migrants to the United States have no special status.

  • The NYRB Daily looks at post-revolutionary Cairo through film.

  • Savage Minds considers the grounds for potentially treating artificial intelligences as people.

  • Torontoist looks at two rival schools of medicine in 19th century Toronto.

  • The Volokh Conspiracy notes that Washington D.C.'s Freedom Plaza can be cleared of protests.

  • Window on Eurasia notes the potential financial catastrophe of Russia's declining villages, and looks at Belarus' national identity.

11:51 PEI Status of Women Announces Recent 2016 Bursary Winners »Women's Equality PEI
Congratulations to Holland College (Wood Manufacturing-Cabinetmaking) student Melissa Smith, the recipient of the Diane Kays Memorial Bursary. The $500 bursary is for a woman-identified student in a post-secondary program at UPEI, Holland College, or Collége de l’île (formerly called Collège de l’Acadie) who is pursuing a field where women are under-represented or who is an […]
11:38 Parking Ticket Violation Reminders Not Being Mailed »City of Charlottetown
2017-01-18 City of Charlottetown Police Services wishes to advise the public that, effective immediately, it will
10:28 Charlottetown Retailer Receives Sustainable Business Certification »City of Charlottetown
2017-01-18 Howatt's Enviro Paints is the most recent recipient of the City of Charlottetown's Sustainable Business
09:52 Few flurries expected today across PEI.. »peistormchaser
Wednesday January 18th 9:50am.. A ridge of high pressure stretching from southern NS northward into Labrador this morning will giving sunshine and light winds to the region today. An intensifying area of low pressure is currently located just south of … Continue reading
09:45 [PHOTO] Winter fog, Yonge and Eglinton »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)
Winter fog, Yonge and Eglinton #toronto #yongeandeglinton #winter #fog #tower #crane

The framing of the sky by the towers and the crane compelled me to photograph this scene from Yonge and Eglinton yesterday afternoon.
09:29 Daily Specials for Wednesday, January 18, 2017 »Casa Mia Daily Specials

The Daily Specials at Casa Mia Restaurant for Wednesday, January 18, 2017 are:

  • Chicken and Corn Chowder $4.99
  • Chicken Parmesan Sandwich $13.95 Homemade chicken parmesan on a toasted baguette with a small ceasar
  • Wild Mushroom Risotto $ 13.95
  • Fettuccini Verdi-Chicken, Spinach, Goat Cheese, light Pesto with soup or salad $14.95
  • Pasta To Go-Choose your pasta (Penne, Spaghetti, Fettuccini), choose your sauce (Meat, Alfredo, Rosato $9.95

Casa Mia Restaurant
131 Queen Street
Charlottetown, PE
Telephone: (902) 367-4440

08:42 [PHOTO] Gare centrale, Montréal, lit up »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)
Gare centrale, Montréal, lit up
03:49 Auditor General E Gaming Report Incomplete, More Questions Than Answers Part 3, RLM Exclusive »
Evidence Shows Wes Sheridan and PEI Did Not Stop E-gaming? Spent over $200k after Government Said It Was Stopped? Evidence that Government Did Not Stop e-Gaming and Simplex Payment  The AG Report states that e-gaming work stopped in Feb. 2012 and also states that Simplex was paid $60,000.00 for the report it was commissioned to … Continue reading Auditor General E Gaming Report Incomplete, More Questions Than Answers Part 3, RLM Exclusive
01:34 Theresa May’s hard-Brexit speech just the start of an epic bad week for free-traders »John Cairns Blog
What a week, folks. Prime Minister Theresa May kicked off festivities today by outlining her plan for Britain’s clean break from the European Union, and it will end Friday with Donald Trump, Mr. “Impose-tariffs-on-everyone”, being sworn in as President of the United States. For pro-Europe people in the U.K., and pro-free-trade people everywhere, this is surely […]
00:00 [LINK] "Kevin O'Leary to enter Conservative leadership race tomorrow" »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)
CBC shares the news. How appropriate, how derivative it is that Canada seems set to have its own cut-rate CanCon version of Donald Trump.

Businessman Kevin O'Leary will enter the Conservative leadership race tomorrow, CBC News has learned.

The Montreal-born anglophone will launch his campaign in Toronto only hours after skipping the French-language debate, which will be held tonight in Quebec City, sources close to the candidate said.

The move comes a week after his campaign exploratory committee told the former CBC Television host there was a "clear path to victory" if he jumped into the crowded race to replace Stephen Harper as permanent leader of the Conservative Party.

"Your many fans are eager to support you and will join the party to do so," Mike Coates, chair of the committee, told O'Leary in a letter, adding that many existing party members would support him because he offers "the most compelling chance at winning the next election."

The former Dragon's Den investor must file his candidacy papers and pay a deposit by Feb. 24 in order to be a candidate in the May 27 vote.

Tuesday January 17, 2017

23:13 New London »nathan rochford:blog

New London

23:12 New Glasgow »nathan rochford:blog

New Glasgow

22:01 Bank Swallow Beach »justpictureit
photo - Bank Swallow Beach

Funding has ended for the bird study I have been involved in for years. It studied bank swallows, then barn swallows and bobolinks. Of course I will continue to visiting those favorite beaches to check on the bank swallow population.

20:01 cloudy sky »Pedaling PEI
19:25 New London/New Glasgow »nathan rochford:blog

New London/New Glasgow

19:00 [URBAN NOTE] "Toronto building houses the world's largest independent LGBTQ archive" »A bit more detail (Randy MacDonald)
blogTO's Phil Villeneuve describes the CLGA, the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives, to his readers.

You might never guess it to walk by, but inside 34 Isabella St., sits the world's largest independent LGBTQ archive.

Built in 1858, the three-storey house that holds Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives is bursting at the seams with a mind-boggling number of collections. They also house some of their archival materials at Church and Wellesley and lesser-used materials in a larger storage facility outside of the city. But the real juicy stuff is in this downtown home.

"I think that people are kind of unaware of archives in general, not just the CLGA," says Raegan Swanson, the Archive's new executive director. "It’s one of those things that until you need to use one, you never realize how much they’re used."

All those historical images you see in magazines, newspapers articles or online pieces about LGBTQ happenings in Toronto? Yeah, they probably came from this archive.