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  #21  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2018, 12:13 PM
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If you're going to pick one or the other, though, Duluth is far better. Two and a half times as many people, much more stuff to do. And they even have the restaurants Thunder Bayer's pine for the most: Olive Garden and Red Lobster.

haha. well take heart, no doubt just the tb superior bowladrome is a lot more happenin than what we saw of the urban renewal wasteland that is the port area in superior, wisc.
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  #22  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2018, 4:36 PM
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Oh, yeah, Superior, Wisconsin is a pointless waste off space. The hierarchy of the Lake Superior cities to visit is Duluth, Sault Ste. Marie, Thunder Bay, Marquette, Grand Marais, Houghton, Nipigon, Two Harbours, Hancock, the Ashland gas plant superfund site, Wawa, then Superior, Wisconsin.

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Interesting thread, but for some reason I want to jump off the nearest bridge now.

You're in luck: Thunder Bay has over 130 bridges!
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  #23  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2018, 11:12 PM
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^^^ (One of the two sectors of) Thunder Bay seems to have a pretty decent Main Street, even though I know the point here wasn't to try to show that side of your city.
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  #24  
Old Posted Dec 15, 2018, 11:33 PM
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It has two decent main streets, the other one intersects that one just before the tall brick building in the background. Those photos were taken on Victoria Day so everything was closed.
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  #25  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2018, 1:01 AM
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After taking a couple minutes to explore Thunder Bay on Google Streetview, I'm going to declare it's a weird city... there doesn't seem to be any obvious downtown. Google says the one and only downtown is the south sector (if it weren't for you, I would not even know TB used to be two cities based on Google Maps), the main street seems to be May Street I guess (I didn't manage to recognize the street you posted) ...?

I also found a nice and solid (from an angle...) old CIBC that, viewed from the front, turns out to be pretty vacuous (East Victoria St), and then I recall that I'm pretty sure I saw that facade already from your posts at some point over the years.
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  #26  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2018, 1:24 AM
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(I didn't manage to recognize the street you posted) ...?
Now I did! South Cumberland Street in the NE sector. (No wonder I couldn't find it anywhere in or near the one "downtown" as per Google.)

Hopefully that Thai place's food is of higher quality than its architecture.....
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  #27  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2018, 1:29 AM
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There are three downtowns. Downtown Port Arthur (aka Waterfront District aka North Core) is the one with the marina on the lake, that's the thriving downtown the above picture is from. The second is the south one, (aka Downtown Fort William, Victoriaville, or South Core) which is probably being flagged by Google as "the downtown" because it's got city hall and the court house. It's main street is actually Victoria Avenue, but since that is blocked by the mall, May Street is now its de facto main street.

The Victoria Avenue CIBC burned down in early 2007, and is on the market for only $39,900, which is essentially the cost of the land. Anyone who manages to actually redevelop that into something other than the ruin it currently is would be hailed as a community hero, in case you're looking to expand your portfolio.

The last downtown is tiny Westfort Village, centered on Frederica and Brown. It was the first real downtown in the area, but was abandoned not long after it was developed due to the railway terminus being moved to the east to the current south downtown core.

Thunder Bay is very spread out and polycentric, we have one of the highest amounts of lane kilometers per person in Canada. The developed area of the city has nearly doubled in size since the 1960s, but the population has been stagnant since.

The only real downtown in Northern Ontario is in Sault Ste. Marie. And if you haven't checked out Duluth yet, it's worth it. Duluth was building some of America's earliest skyscrapers back when Thunder Bay was a trading post and some fields. Ten years after the first skyscraper in the world was built in Chicago, Duluth built one just as tall, and it's still standing today.

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Hopefully that Thai place's food is of higher quality than its architecture.....
It's a very good restaurant. Not as good as what I have in Vancouver, but much better than you might think for this city. The building it's in is over 110 years old, it was originally a bank, but I can't recall the company that operated it. One of the banks that has long been merged into another bank.
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  #28  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2018, 1:54 AM
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The Victoria Avenue CIBC burned down in early 2007, and is on the market for only $39,900, which is essentially the cost of the land. Anyone who manages to actually redevelop that into something other than the ruin it currently is would be hailed as a community hero, in case you're looking to expand your portfolio.
Wow, Port Arthur seems quite pricey! This for example:
https://www.realtor.ca/real-estate/1...ay-thunder-bay

$360k for that little piece of crap building!!!!! I'd consider maybe paying that much if it were on Bay Street in that other Ontario city starting with T.

The market in Fort William seems saner. Crazy as it may seem, I'm not yet saying 100% no to the idea (of bringing this old bank back; I probably could pull it off). Though I'd rather invest in Duluth. Also, to be honest with you, this photothread basically screams "don't be an idiot, invest anywhere but here!"
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  #29  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2018, 2:41 AM
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Yeah, I'm actually surprised at how many properties are going for over a million. That was unheard of just a few years ago. It's all speculation from out of town investors. They think nothing of renting an apartment for $1,500 when similarly priced units are on the market by local landlords for little more than half that. A lot of the decay in the city is the result of out of towners buying properties as speculation, and neglecting them when the economic progress never arrived. Several empty lots in my neighbourhood were once turn of the last century hotels, owned by an Ottawa development firm with intentions to, some day, renovate them. They eventually neglected them to the point they got condemned, and the owners stopped paying taxes on them. The city owned them until their demise, and only recently sold the land to a local car hoarder. Thunder Bay has been in this situation for almost all of its existence; even Sir Arthur Conan Doyle owned property here, though he never visited the city. You can find ads for land in this area in newspapers all over eastern North America from the 1890s to 1910s. Of course, we have local slumlords too, they're responsible for the other half of neglected properties.

And yes, I'm sure the city's economic development commission will give me a thumbs down for the commentary here.
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  #30  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2018, 9:16 PM
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So let's jump back to this building:



And take a look at what locals want it to be!



Haha, wow. Because we don't have a Tim Hortons beside a Subway in enough places in this city, we need more of them.
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  #31  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2018, 9:26 PM
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Lio if you buy that old bank facade and stick an Olive Garden in there we will make you King of the City and name the street its on after you.
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  #32  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2018, 10:50 PM
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Nice pictures from the Twin Cities of the North. I like the pictures in the fog. The pictures of the ships are also interesting. Second largest port in Ontario. Maybe something to highlight in the future.
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  #33  
Old Posted Dec 16, 2018, 10:55 PM
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It can be tricky to get near them, most of the facilities have security of some kind. Not that they're impenetrable but generally if you're near them with a camera, someone will come up and tell you to leave.
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  #34  
Old Posted Dec 17, 2018, 12:04 AM
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its like downriver detroit went to toledo and iceland. droll commentary. you are my new favorite poster!! tell us more about the seedy maritime past. or present!
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  #35  
Old Posted Dec 17, 2018, 12:24 AM
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Lio if you buy that old bank facade and stick an Olive Garden in there we will make you King of the City and name the street its on after you.
You sure they'd consider bumping Queen Victoria (not exactly a random nobody) for me? That may be tempting. I'm not getting any younger and I should start to think of leaving at least some kind of legacy behind (I'm not counting on Sherbrooke to rename a street after me.)

Trying to think of a potential occupant that would be a half-decent business case - do you think the local chapter of the Hells Angels would like to move to that location as my tenant? In Montreal they're going out of their way to show off (sumptuous wedding last week, among others), having that as the facade of their bunker would be awesome and the obvious next step! The TBay Chapter would be the talk of the continent!

Alternatively, that youth center with a $100k yearly budget who's currently stuck in a moldy decrepit building...? That would be a serious improvement in class for them! (Seriously though, they might blow that entire operating budget on services for their 'customers', it's not that much when you think about it.)
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  #36  
Old Posted Dec 17, 2018, 1:02 AM
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You sure they'd consider bumping Queen Victoria (not exactly a random nobody) for me? That may be tempting. I'm not getting any younger and I should start to think of leaving at least some kind of legacy behind (I'm not counting on Sherbrooke to rename a street after me.)
It was actually named for Victoria McVicar.

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Trying to think of a potential occupant that would be a half-decent business case - do you think the local chapter of the Hells Angels would like to move to that location as my tenant? In Montreal they're going out of their way to show off (sumptuous wedding last week, among others), having that as the facade of their bunker would be awesome and the obvious next step! The TBay Chapter would be the talk of the continent!
They might!

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Alternatively, that youth center with a $100k yearly budget who's currently stuck in a moldy decrepit building...? That would be a serious improvement in class for them! (Seriously though, they might blow that entire operating budget on services for their 'customers', it's not that much when you think about it.)
I also volunteer at a youth centre a few blocks away (in a former Hells Angels clubhouse, no less) and our budget is also $100,000/year and our main building is well maintained. Just over half the budget goes to salaries, about a third to bills, and the remaining fifth or so goes to materials and food. $100,000 definitely is not very much, but if we were in a moldy building we would make getting out of it a higher priority than he has.

But that's none of my business.
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  #37  
Old Posted Dec 18, 2018, 1:09 AM
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The strange part as an ex-Michigander is that I always viewed Isle Royale as this far off—almost mythical—land, with so little to actually see and do that it’s just too damn far for most of us to visit. That is unless you are a legitimate outdoors person. Nevertheless, it’s a place we are all proud of and curious about. And here you are, like 23 miles north of it, and hookers are getting dragged away on tankers.
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  #38  
Old Posted Dec 18, 2018, 1:20 AM
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I never got the magic of Isle Royale I mean it looks just like here but it's an island in America?

It is a really interesting place, its isolation has resulted in a pretty unique ecosystem. But for us, we can see things that look like Isle Royale almost everywhere we go so it isn't really much of a draw for us. I don't think many Canadians go there unless they're doing research.

Hookers get dragged away in tankers in Detroit, too, btw. It's a global problem. It tends to happen more around Superior, however, because indigenous people tend to go missing without many people sounding an alarm, especially back in the 20th century.
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  #39  
Old Posted Dec 18, 2018, 3:24 AM
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The strange part as an ex-Michigander is that I always viewed Isle Royale as this far off—almost mythical—land, with so little to actually see and do that it’s just too damn far for most of us to visit. That is unless you are a legitimate outdoors person. Nevertheless, it’s a place we are all proud of and curious about. And here you are, like 23 miles north of it, and hookers are getting dragged away on tankers.
That's perfectly normal in most of the extreme north parts of the Lower 48. Same thing around here: the furthest reaches of Upstate NY are considered really distant (from an American PoV), like it's at the end of the known world, then, boom, just beyond this super-remote land where there's nothing and which is so far off that no one ever goes there, you have Montreal and its 4+ million people, its gridlock, subways and skyscrapers.
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  #40  
Old Posted Dec 18, 2018, 3:38 AM
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They might!
Sucks that Thunder Bay is so far away from here and so inconveniently located (for visits / going back and forth). I'm already geographically spread a bit more than would be ideal (one upside of that is that I'm having eggs in various baskets, but it doesn't make up for inconvenience of management), and I have no possible reason to ever go to NWO. If my gf had relatives there (like the typical Anglo, she has family in places like Calgary and Halifax) then that would already be something.

A project like that in my hometown's downtown, I wouldn't hesitate. (And I'm sure I wouldn't be the only one interested.)

Still not saying 100% no, though. You only live once, but a street named after you lives forever.

Also I'd absolutely love to see the face of the people at the city's economic development commission when they'd ask how come an outsider like me got interested in investing in TB and I'd link them to this thread and say it's all thanks to this 'vid' guy...
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