Leafblowers

Covid oblige, I’ve been forcing myself out on morning cycle-rides to replace my usual commute. I’ve been fairly successful, possibly due to the 20C weather we’ve been having in Montreal in early November.

I go for quick 30 to 40 minute rides, which usually involve leaving the proletarian neighbourhoods just north of Snowdon metro station (ok, ok…. the neighbourhood has pleasant duplexes and walk-up apartments), for the etheral heights of Westmount, a mere 1km (and few million dollars) up the hill. I then continue to Mount Royal, and make my way back the same same way.

Pleasant duplexes
Pleasant huge houses

What has surprised me most is the incredible noisiness of the upper Westmount streets. There is little traffic, there are good hills to cycle up, and some beautiful houses … but almost each house has a small army of gardeners, who spend an inordinate amount of time blowing leaves (and dust) from one place to another.

The sound pollution is awful. The scent of two-stroke engines all-pervasive. The futility of blowing leaves and dust around is somewhat bemusing….

Source: https://whenmonstersattack.com/page/3

Published by Richard Shearmur

I am a professor at McGill's School of Urban Planning. I perform research on innovation, on how we locate work activities (in a world where people often work from many places), and on urban and regional economic geography. I used to work in real-estate, and teach a course on this. I am an urban planner, member of the Ordre des Urbanistes du Québec and of the Canadian institute of Planners.

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