Glenn Smith shares his memories of ‘the Legion’ at 48 Ontario Street during a live interview with Martin de Groot shot at the Commons Studio. Back in 1986 he began a new venture as a concert promoter, introducing an impressive rotation of blues talent to a receptive local audience. Revisit our walk-about in February HERE
Legendary performances and Sold-Out shows at the Legion Dance Hall animate the story of Kitchener’s love affair with the Blues
48 Ontario Street, an unassuming treasure nestled in Kitchener’s downtown technology cluster is the site of the 5th annual CSC Student Design Competition
Glenn – so appreciate the interview and your endorsement of the competition, but thank you most of all for the many years of gutsy investment in live music. You’re the real deal.
Hope to see those posters someday!
Stroll through the K-Town Blues Garden:
Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown
Magic Slim & The Teardrops
Walter Wolfman Washington
Kim Wilson & The Fabulous Thunderbirds
King Biscuit Boy
Big Twist & the Mellow Fellow
Professor Rick Haldenby delivers an insightful and entertaining address to an audience of real estate enthusiasts at a breakfast event hosted by the KW Association of Realtors on Thursday, April 5th, 2018 at Bingemans Marshall Hall.
It is always a pleasure to hear Professor Haldenby speak. His passion for the industrial architecture of Waterloo Region is infectious, inspired by the wisdom of post war city builders whose economic development strategy enabled significant investment in training and education; building, as if with secret foreknowledge, the urban stage we see today. Act One of the Illustrious Industrious City was only a first draft, with the Second Act well into production with (seemingly) weekly funding announcements and new Scenes crafted in the presence of tech giants, plant expansions, and flourishing start-ups.
The Proverb ” A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children…” comes to mind as I reflect on Rick’s message summoned by the conviction that the “Waterloo Phenomena” has been made possible by inheritance. What really surprises me is that it remains unabashed throughout the panel discussion. We heard from four of the Region’s largest and most progressive developers: Craig Beattie (Perimeter Development Corporation), Scott Higgins (Hip Developments), Mike Maxwell (Momentum Developments), and Anne Marchildon (Andrin Ltd). Each one shared their perspective, back stories and vision with the civic pride and sincerity that comes with a personal commitment to the Region and a lot of skin in the game.
Yep, I’m going to listen to the tape again, to be sure it wasn’t just the chocolate chip pastries, but somehow I know they get inheritance…hmmm…stay tuned.
Brent Davis covers the event at The Record
More from Rick Haldenby…a series of thirteen video shorts recorded in 2016 at CSC & The Case of the Illustrious Industrious City: Act 1 Scene 1
Scott Higgins, President of Hip Developments Inc. expands on the ROI of “getting a little bit crazy” at Waterloo Region In The Making. Scott leads his team to be bold, think big and take action focused on building creativity and culture, a guiding principle of their construction projects.
Memories of prepping for the Riverbank Lofts launch party in Hespeler Village…
Shout out to Chris Adamkowski who knows a thing or two about future proofing in the age of Artificial Intelligence. He was the keynote speaker at this year’s CSC Building Expo, on Wednesday, February 28th at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
Chris is the Head of Industry at Google and manages a high performance team dedicated to Government, Travel, and Tourism clients in Canada. He dropped by our display of the 2017 Design Competition winning entries from Conestoga College and was introduced to the unique Maker Space Hub at http://catalyst-137.com/.
We hope to see more of him in Waterloo Region!
Trudy Beaulne passed away suddenly on Friday, January 5, 2018 at the age of 63. She was an activist who genuinely loved her community, her neighbourhood and her mission. She worked tirelessly to advocate for those suffering, especially from the effects of poverty, physical disabilities and mental illness. She was the Executive Director of the Social Development Centre Waterloo Region, formerly known as K-W Social Planning Council. I met her sometime in the mid nineties and she was a big fan of my vision to use primary schools as the central community hub of neighbourhoods. This was a radical idea at the time and met with strong resistance. Her loving heart and strong, tenacious personality set the example that I needed to draw from to navigate through the many obstacles to come. Innovative partnerships were formed with Toastmasters, Katimavik, the Food Bank, Region of Waterloo Public Health & the WCDSB to provide lunch hour and after-school programming at Smithson Public School in Kitchener as part of a pilot project to explore the school/community hub model. The project had a huge positive impact on the children who benefited the most, but was ultimately shot down. The seed was planted, but the ground proved infertile. Trudy’s guidance gave me the courage to plant anyways, no matter what the outcome.
This video is a collection of photos taken during the Festival of Neighbourhoods Celebration & Awards Ceremony at City Hall. Trudy “hired” me as the event photographer from 1997 to 1999. These photos were doubles of my prints uncovered on Valentine’s Day in a shoe box and scanned yesterday afternoon to create this slideshow.
The soundtrack “How I Got to Memphis” is one of my favourite songs by Soulstack, recorded live off the floor at the Boathouse in Kitchener on December 9th, 2017
Like Soulstack on facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/Soulstack/
Students & faculty from the Ryerson School of Interior Design enjoyed a tour of 48 Ontario Street in Kitchener on Friday, February 2nd. This is the school’s fourth visit to Waterloo Region to experience the local culture and study the architectural, economic and demographic forces on significant properties of historical/cultural influence. Their research will inform this year’s case study of the former Bell Telephone Co. building turned Royal Canadian Legion Branch 50, otherwise known as “the Legion”.
Glenn Smith joined the tour to get reacquainted with the building where back in 1986 he launched an outrageous experiment as a concert promoter and introduced such talented blues artists as Buddy Guy and Mel Brown from (mostly) New Orleans, Detroit and the Chicago area to a new audience in Kitchener-Waterloo. Legendary performances and Sold-Out shows at the Legion Dance Hall begins the story of Kitchener’s love affair with the Blues. Who remembers that Colin James played there when he was just 18?! If the walls could talk…
Watch for more about Glenn and Kitchener’s blues roots starting with the soon-to-be-released live interview with Martin de Groot at the Commons Studio
Sunshine & Frigid temperatures set the stage for a twist on the urban legend of Groundhog Day at Kitchener City Centre. Far from the predictable news from Willie, here is proof that Waterloo Region is not stuck in Groundhog day with this candid snapshot of genuine multi-sectorial collaboration. Shout out to our esteemed community leaders Martin de Groot, Raj Saini MP, Taymoore Balbaa, Cathie Schneider, Tammy Lawrence, Councillor Sarah Marsh, James Howe, and Glenn Smith.
That’s me between Martin and Cathie…two of the few who would never try to shoot down a good idea before it gets a chance to fly:)
In the News…
Technology is not the new flavour. How do we manage the change process?
Peter Altobelli, VP of Yardi Canada, reflecting on the evolution of commercial leasing, spoke about change management with the confidence that comes from years of steadying the ship. He discussed the impact of “WeWork” the latest disruptor, completely unforeseeable as a business model in previous decades. Waves of humiliation rolled over in fear that I probably had no idea what he was talking about. Then suddenly, aha! I HAD heard about WeWork. A notice in my inbox from the Meetup Community announcing it had been acquired. All for We
Robert Plateck, Founder/CEO of SensorSuite and Building Systems Engineer, Laura Tousley spoke on the importance of open architecture for software integration of legacy systems and future expansion to optimize everything. I starting thinking building performance like indoor air quality and energy consumption; tenant information and concierge services, maintenance, security, life safety all connected and operated from a single dashboard. I imagined systems linked to reporting and remittance functions (like energy benchmarking) informing financial planning and providing intelligence to risk management in real time.
Core readiness for future proofing will include building infrastructure investments in wired, wireless and radio communications. The importance of cybersecurity and training on the devices and apps that interact with the building cannot be overstated. I had heard that same warning delivered at an earlier seminar and made a mental note to flag these as barriers to user adoption. The Buzz in the room agreed.
Plan an exist strategy for software use. Who owns the data? Can you transport all your work to a new platform?
Our panel’s vision of the future extends beyond a fully automated, integrated and even modular building to include smart neighbourhoods, powered by local solar/wind generation. Energy storage and local demand response are other strategies that have been tested to improve service where power outages are common. Knowledge will increase in the deployment of battery energy storage for peak shaving and further the clean energy market.
Max Steinman Director of Sales for Landlord Web Solutions reflected on the trend toward marketing running everything at the site level. 3D virtual tours complete with virtual/augmented reality may soon replace the role of the leasing agent. Having worked with the folks at iGuide, I was somewhat familiar with that reality…slipping into the not too distant future I imagined all of the savings possible (time, fuel, disappointment, not to mention the inconvenience to existing tenants and pets). Virtual tours would show the space in pristine condition at any hour of the day, provide accurate room dimensions with tools for furniture placement and estimating window coverings, appliance specifications, and more. One stop collaborative tools for connecting to local utility providers, day care centres, grocery delivery, movers, driverless car pick-up…
What process/analysis can be put in place for a new vender?
What specific applications and collaboration tools work with senior housing? Student residences? Family multi-residential? Commercial tenants?
Engagement Engagement Engagement
Forget Credit Karma, artificial intelligence will predict tenant behaviour and launch credit check accuracy, employment and personality screening to a new level enabling instant tenant approvals. Out pops a smart lease, ready for immediate digital endorsement thanks to the advancement of blockchain technology. Questions about living in the building? Neighbours? There’s a chatbot for that. Keys? Yep, fully functional on moving day and you can probably unlock a private storage locker in advance as a signing bonus. Just hit the send button on the lease to seal the deal.
Data driven, experience driven, and tenant driven change are the new forces bearing down on landlords
think bed bug registry
The Honourable Liz Sandals MPP (Guelph) & President of the Treasury Board opened the 2017 GO Open Data Conference on May 5th at the City of London’s Public Library. Minister Sandals spoke about the Province of Ontario’s commitment to open, transparent governance and announced that Ontario has officially adopted the International Open Data Charter
Download a copy of the Conference Review at opendata.ca
Culture, Currency & Communitech
Kevin Tuer, Ph.D., P.Eng and Managing Director of odx Canada’ Open Data Exchange, spoke at the Conference about the need on both the supply side and demand side to understand the value of open data and the need to strategize to define an outcome. Kevin made reference to Map Your Property as an App that demonstrates that understanding. Minister Sandals is also a fan (go to the 5 minute mark on the video). I haven’t had a chance to try it out, but as a tool for real estate/land development professionals working in Toronto or York Region, it looks very promising!
Thanks to organizers of the GoOpenData conference for sending this update:
“The real battle is for the data that delivers the most relevant and pertinent insights — the combination of data sets that enable effective and more rapid monetization of data.” This means combining data from customers, social media, machines and the Internet of things. It means finding new ways to transform the data into information and knowledge. In the end, Capgemini CEO John Brahim noted, organizations that do not act…and react appropriately, face a “serious threat to survival.” – See more at: http://www.cioinsight.com
The Fluffy Beaver returns to K-town!
Discover Patagonia and the delightful aroma of Fresh Ground
February 17th from 11AM to 1PM
Jessica Rose is a French self taught photographer and illustrator and has been for the past 15 years. Depending where she finds herself (her husband moves around a lot and she likes to follow), or where her life’s at, inspiration comes along to animate her camera or pencils. She’s currently working on a comic book and has a few projects up her sleeve.
Check out her work here :
Pictures : https://fineartamerica.com/profiles/jessica-rose.html
Blog and Tarot Game (stories on the illustrations and rules) : http://www.thefluffybeaver.com/
Tarot Game shop : http://www.thefluffybeaver.etsy.com/
Instagram : jessikrose
Commissions and information : firstname.lastname@example.org
Coming soon! a virtual shop on society6.com
The fluffy beaver returns to K-town in August. Watch for a sighting near you!