Friday, September 28, 2007

top secret meeting

Transportation for Liveable Communities Meeting

Begins at October 4th 06:30 PM
Ends at October 4th 08:00 PM
Organized by Transportation for Liveable Communities

OPIRG's Sustainable Transportation group is meeting to plan future events and campaigns to support public transit, cycling, and walking initiatives at McMaster, in Hamilton, and beyond.

All are welcome, no special knowledge required - if you get around without a car in the city, you probably know what needs doing...

McMaster University Student Centre room 224

Draft Agenda
1. Debrief Car Free Week
2. Thank You cards
3. Upcoming Issues
a) Light Rail
b) One Way Streets to Two Way (anniversary of 1956 change at end of Oct)
c) Bike Racks on GO buses?
d) event with Transit Users Group to celebrate bike racks on HSR
e) other....

Please RSVP to and forward the invitation to people who might be interested (especially McMaster students!)

Thursday, September 27, 2007

bus and hike number double from last year... four. But this year we had a naturalist (Alf Senior) to guide the group.

Like last year, rain was hovering on the edge of the bus stop.

Last year we went to Sherman Falls, this year, Tiffany.

The good news is Alf is willing to lead more hikes throughout the year. So watch for that.

In the meantime, the Hamilton Naturalist Club has lots of hikes and events, so check them out too.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

transit talk

Monday night, sky dragon centre:

A discussion on the future of transit in Hamilton focused on Light Rail. Check out raise the hammer for more

photo credit - Thom Oommen


Tuesday, September 25, 2007


This poster has survived for several days here in Dundas, even on a busy route of high school students who have been known to run straight through large election signs (for the conservatives, if that has any meaning?) at the urging of their freinds. I saw it happen, and it was pretty funny.
Anyway, here is the "official" car free week poster, made by Mr. Gord Pullar, for Transportation for Liveable Communities.
Have you seen one in your neighbourhood? Let us know at

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Monday, September 24, 2007

whatever the weather: car free!

Wednesday's forecast is for a chance of showers. so all you have to do is dress for the weather and join us as we bus and then hike to Tiffany Falls: to be honest, a little precipitation makes the woods look more, well, saturated with colour, and it may add to the flow of the falls.

Drought conditions are severe these days, with parts of Cootes Paradise marsh and upper reaches of Spencer Creek running dry. So rain? Bring it on!

Remember we are meeting at 5:30pm SHARP! (so we don't miss the bus) Wednesday (S.26) at the bus stop by the McMaster Museum of Art.

Full time Mac students bring your student card with valid HSR sticker, everyone else bring your pass/ticket/cash fare (bus drivers cannot make change, so exact change is $2.25)

We'll be gone for a couple hours all told.

Participants will also receive bike route, waterfalls, and eat local maps.

Our guide is Alf Senior from the Hamilton Naturalist Club.

REMINDER - Transit Talk at the Sky Dragon Centre (27 King William St) at 7pm tonight (Monday, September 24, 2007)

Sunday, September 23, 2007

cootes nature hike

Ward One city councillor Brian McHattie (in red, gesturing at left) leads a group on a CAR FREE COOTES hike in Cootes Paradise today. Participants learned to identify at least five trees in the Carolinian forest, as well as many smaller plants (like woodland goldenrod and poison ivy) and see something that Brian said hasn't been seen since 1956 - parts of the marsh dry from lack of water exposing the bottom of the marsh.

This is the fourth annual hike in Cootes that Brian has led for us, and each time I learn something new.
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Saturday, September 22, 2007

Parking Meter Party for CFD 2007

Car Free Day in Hamilton, 2007 - you could hardly see the sod for the people, and the couch. At the far end of the King Street East scene you can see the Recycle Cycle boys doing some free bike repairs. In the foreground, just to the left, Brian and Natalia do a stirring and well received hours-long set on guitar and violin and help power the friendly vibe. The rest of the crew are pictured chillin' as they enjoy the september sun.

One person actually saw the two chess sets on the grass and got off the bus at the next stop to walk back and join in. We also saw lots of puzzled looks and a few thumbs-up as people passed the scene in their vehicles.

The MacGreen crew did the hard work of greening the site with sod, which covered at least three parking spaces to make room for the parking meter party. TLC gave away dozens of cycling, waterfall, and eat local maps to passerby. Several area residents hung out and drank lemonade, and a small group of women happened by and put the rest to shame by dancing with great delight to the live music. Local roti shop Ya Man! did a brisk business with hungry cyclists and Neil the bus driver commandeered his articulated HSR bus (with front-mounted bike racks) from the site.
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car free day 2007


Friday, September 21, 2007

getting the message out

some TLC'ers go to the source to get the sustainable transportation message out to thousands of people: the hwy 403 overpass. Reports of lots of supportive honks.

TLC has also done media interviews on CHML 900am and some shadowy video project of the Spectator's.

Don't forget tonight's movie at the Ewart Angus Centre at McMaster Medical Centre room 1a6 - 7pm it's THE CITY AND THE WORLD, from the documentary series: New York. It's free and there's sure to be discussion following.
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they're here....

Car Free Day falls on Saturday, September 22, 2007, and Hamilton will be holding a week of activities beginning Friday S.21 and ending Friday S.28.


  • FRIDAY SEPT. 21, 7-10pm. Start Car Free Week in Hamilton with a thought provoking documentary film: The City and the World (1945-Present) from the series New York: A Documentary Film.
During the seventh episode of NEW YORK: A DOCUMENTARY FILM, the turbulent and often harrowing years from 1945 to the present are explored. Emerging from the Depression and the Second World War as the most powerful metropolis on Earth, New York soon confronted urban woes of unprecedented proportions, and fought for its very existence.
Program Description
In exploring the social, economic and physical forces that swept through the city in the post-war period, Episode Seven examines the great African-American migration and Puerto Rican immigration of the '40s, '50s, and '60s; the beginnings of white flight and suburbanization; and the massive physical changes wrought by highways and urban renewal -- all of which were directed, to a surprising degree, by one man: Robert Moses. The film comes to a climax with the destruction of Penn Station, the battle over the Lower Manhattan Expressway, the social and fiscal crises of the '60s and '70s, and New York's miraculous revival in the last quarter-century.

Ewart Angus Centre (McMaster University Medical Centre) Room 1A6
  • CAR FREE DAY: Parking Meter Party!
SATURDAY. SEPTEMBER 22. 12 noon, KING STREET EAST at FERGUSON. Transform a roadside parking spot into party central, all you need is a quarter for the meter! The more people who come, the more parking spaces we will liberate for uses other than depositing a car.
TLC will supply the sod, bike mechanics will set up shop to do free bicycle check-ups, there will be live acoustic music, and the brave will dance.
Car Free Day is an international annual celebration of living in the city without a car, focusing on active and sustainable modes of transportation.
TLC has been celebrating CFD each year since 2000. Join the fun.


Explore the natural beauty of Cootes Paradise, the nature preserve in McMaster's backyard.
Ward one city councillor Brian McHattie (also former president of the Hamilton Naturalist Club) takes us on the annual hike into the natural wonders of Cootes to explore the diverse environment. Learn about the native flora and fauna, the efforts to protect this Carolinian Forest and marsh habitat, and better understand how we can work to improve the environment.
Meet at 10am inside the McMaster Student Centre, at the tables in front of the Union Market (at the north end of the student centre). Wear sensible footwear, bring water and a sun hat, and binoculars if you have some. Please pre-register with randy(at)opirg(dot)ca or 905-525-9140 ext. 26026

Monday September 24, 7pm
Sky Dragon Centre, 27 King William Street

Hamilton has been promised hundreds of millions in funding for public transit this election. How are we going to spend this windfall? On more buses and business as usual or on a revolutionary new transportation system. Light rail, as opposed to bus rapid transit, is cleaner, more attractive to new users, stimulates economic development and is just plain cool. Ward One Councillor Brian McHattie will be on hand to join Raise the Hammer and Hamilton CATCH for a municipal politics discussion night at the Sky Dragon with a focus on the future of public transit in Hamilton.
  • BASIC BICYCLE REPAIR - the dedicated volunteer mechanics at RECYCLE CYCLES will host a free, basic bike repair workshop from 6-9pm, Tuesday, September 25, at their workshop in the basement of Erskine Presbyterian Church (19 Pearl street North, enter off Morden). After learning the basics, consider volunteering with Recycle Cycles to help keep old bikes from the landfill, while making inexpensive bicycles available to the people of Hamilton. Space at the workshop is limited so please pre-register with randy(at) or 905-525-9140 ext. 26026.
  • WOMEN ONLY BASIC BIKE REPAIR - TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 25, 7-9 pm at MaCycle (basement of Wentworth House, McMaster University) - space is limited, so please pre-register with randy(at)opirg(dot)org
Learn how to change a tire, fix a flat, adjust your brakes and gears along with general maintenance tips

Alf Senior of the Hamilton Naturalist Club will lead a BUS and HIKE from McMaster to Tiffany Falls, 5:30pm sharp!
- Meet at the bus stop beside McMaster Museum of Art, McMaster University and take the 5C Bus - the entire trip will be less than 2hrs est. return - F/T mac students bring student card with valid HSR sticker - others please have HSR ticket or exact cash fare. TLC will have free tickets for those who request them.
Participants will receive free Hamilton Waterfall, and City Cycling Maps.
Wear sensible clothing and footwear, bring water and a snack. Stay on marked trails - take nothing but photos, etc. for a zero impact hike.
  • CAR FREE DRIVE-IN MOVIE AT GAGE PARK BANDSHELL - THURSDAY, September 27, films start at dusk - a great outdoor family event - leave your car at home and walk, bike, or bus to Gage Park for the annual event celebrating car free week in Hamilton. Bring a lawn-chair or a blanket and a friend.

End Car Free Week with the monthly CRITICAL MASS BIKE RIDE, Friday, September 28, meet at 5:30pm at Hess and George Streets in Hamilton's "Hess Village" - the mass bike ride through the downtown is a great way to explore the city's reviving core in a friendly ride with other cyclists. The more the merrier, so grab a friend and come downtown.
The ride is about an hour long at a leisurely pace (it's not a race) and roller bladers, skateboarders, uni-cyclists, wayward youth, and ice-cream vendors all welcome.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

local transit video: using bus bike racks

Saw this on Raise the Hammer - a you tube video by Hamilton's very own Thom Oommen - good work Thom, and the great actors!

My daughter and I used the racks the other day on the King bus, simple and effective!


Saturday, September 15, 2007

You Sod!

Parking Meter Party - JULY 16, 2001, King Street West at MacNab, Hamilton ONTARIO.
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Street Reclaiming, King William at Hughson, Hamilton ON - September 22, 2002

We're unrolling the sod again - this time September 22, 2007 at King Street East at Ferguson, 12 noon. Bring anything you can to make it fun!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

More Car Free Week Updates

A productive meeting last night for TLC and we finally settled on the location and time for the Parking Meter Party for CFD September 22 -


And the Monday night event is back on the schedule with this:

Sky Dragon Centre, 27 King William Street

Monday September 24, 7pm
Hamilton has been promised hundreds of millions in funding for public transit this election. How are we going to spend this windfall? On more buses and business as usual or on a revolutionary new transportation system. Light rail, as opposed to bus rapid transit, is cleaner, more attractive to new users, stimulates economic development and is just plain cool. Ward One Councillor Brian McHattie will be on hand to join Raise the Hammer and Hamilton CATCH for a municipal politics discussion night at the Sky Dragon with a focus on the future of public transit in Hamilton.

We also have a flyer designed by Gord Pullar, and a commitment from McMaster's radio CFMU to play a generic 30 second Car Free Day advertisement on the air.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

car free week update and meeting reminder

The week is all lined-up and an updated list of events can be found here.

Reminder of the TLC meeting on Wednesday, September 12 at the McMaster University Student Centre room 220, starting promptly at 5:30pm.

Help make it happen!