Archived columns and blog posts by Matt Elliott

ArchiveNovember 2016

Ep. 13: Fighting the urban parasite

Is your house a parasite, sucking the very lifeblood out of your city? It might be. On this episode, Luke and Matt conduct an interview with Nathanael Lauster, professor of sociology at the University of British Columbia and author of the new book The Life and Death of the Single-Family House: Lessons from Vancouver on Building a Livable City. Nathan tells us how the detached, single-family home...

Toronto's road toll plan is only as good as the things it will pay for

John Tory announced his plan for road tolls at a time when the city is looking for new sources of revenue for the budget and specific infrastructure projects. Mayor John Tory’s surprise move last week to support highway tolls on the Don Valley Parkway and Gardiner Expressway is bold. It’s brave. It’s visionary. It’s also a half-measure. I write that with some hesitation. I don’t want to detract...

Ep. 12: The maximum number of cats

A view of the Roncesvalles neighbourhood in Toronto. It’s a monumental reunion as all three of your hosts are once again in the same room. After some quick catching up and a timely Captain Planet reference, Luke tells Vass and Matt all about his recent reporting on gentle density. Can building small residential additions on top of retail stores help cities deal with their housing issues? And will...

Renters are getting a raw deal as governments focus on homeowners

The endless government fretting about home ownership should rightfully leave renters resentful, writes Matt Elliott. Last week, the provincial government did what governments often do when they’re concerned about their popularity: they announced a tax break for home buyers. People buying their first home in our hot housing market — where a half-million dollars maybe gets you a shoebox with a...

Ep. 11: Gold-plated cities

Luke and Matt deal existential angst and crushing despair in the wake of the United States presidential election. In an attempt at catharsis, they compartmentalize and discuss two smaller city-related aspects of the Donald Trump presidency. First, the urban vs. rural divide. Is there reason to still believe society will get more progressive-minded as people move to cities? And what’s the...

Welcome back, photo radar — Toronto’s most vulnerable road users missed you

Enforcing speed limits in school zones and community safety zones are the focus of the Ontario government's plans to reintroduce photo radar. Welcome back, photo radar. You’ve been gone too long. The Ontario government announced last week that they will introduce legislation allowing municipalities to use automated cameras to enforce speed limits in school zones and community safety zones... Archived columns and blog posts by Matt Elliott


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