Friday, March 9, 2012

Time Change and Driving

Drivers, please be extra cautious after the time change this weekend (2:00 am, March 11, 2012).  Studies suggest that the increase in crashes after a time change are due to the effect that the change has on our body clocks.  While that may be true, I believe an overlooked factor involves the position of the sun.  For example, after a time change, the sun just isn't where you were used to it being on your drive to or from work.  Don't be caught off guard taking a corner or rounding a curve.  Anticipate!!

I am curious to know what the statistics say. For example, after a time change, are the increased number of crashes occuring primarily 1) during daylight hours, 2) in sunny conditions, and 3) during early morning and/or late day hours?

Since the change in sun position is more noticeable at low sun angles, I suspect the change has more of an effect early in the morning and late in the day - during key commute times!

So commuters especially, please be extra cautious if your drive occurs during the first or last hour of daylight.  That's when the sun is most likely to be below your roof line and most likely to interfere with your ability to see the things you need to see such as traffic lights, stop signs, and objects on the road like pedestrians, cyclists, bikers and other vehicles.

Plan ahead.  Have a good pair of sunglasses (polarized) within easy reach and make sure you keep your visor clear (i.e. get rid of the papers, gas receipts and CD's) so you can actually use the visor for its intended use.

Have a quick look in your local paper to see when sunrise and sunset are next week.  Then, make a mental note of when that first and last hour of daylight occur.  If you expect to be driving during either of those periods, be prepared.

E-mail me directly ( if you need sunrise/sunset times for your location.

Cheers, Ralph

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Miscellaneous “Sun & Shadow” Items - Feb 2012

The following are miscellaneous “sun and shade” and solar energy facts and comments.  They were derived from our twitter feed ( or @SunPosition) for the month of February 2012 and some contain links to news articles.

RT @CanadianSIA: RT @InvestOntario: Ontario has the largest-scale commercial solar farm operation in Canada -

Here's a good explanation. Huh, it's because of the sun > Why do we have leap years? -

RT @BradDuguid: Congrats to OSM Solar in Welland - 60 jobs & contributing to ON as global leader in manufacturing for the clean energy industry

Toronto is gaining about 3 minutes of daylight per day in late Feb. Nice!

Winnipeg will hit the 11 hours of daylight mark on March 1st.

Vancouver will hit the 11 hours of daylight mark on March 1st.

Halifax will hit the 11 hours of daylight mark on Monday Feb 27th.

Ottawa will hit the 11 hours of daylight mark on Monday Feb 27th.

Barrie will hit the 11 hours of daylight mark on Sunday Feb 26th.

Toronto will hit the 11 hours of daylight mark on Sunday Feb 26th.

"In just six hours the world's deserts receive more energy from the sun than people consume in a year" -

Idaho Mountain Express: More solar power in Sun Valley? -

Canadian students place third in solar contest - Construction Canada -

Green energy doesn't mean installing a solar panel under a tree LOL > Tree shade ruins school safety sign -

Eco-friendly lamps let Muscovites bask in sun amid winter cold -

"@ottawastart: Cool photo: "Sunset Ontario Winter"" Nice pic. Ottawa sunsets 5:15 to 5:23 pm 2nd week of Feb.

London 2012 Olympics - Sunrise/Sunset Times…

India's panel price crash could spark solar revolution > New Scientist -

Ottawa gains 1 hour 22 minutes of daylight per day during Feb. Nice!!…

Vancouver gains 1 hour 35 minutes of daylight per day during Feb. Nice!!…

Toronto gains 1 hour 17 minutes of daylight per day during Feb. Nice!!…

Solar power less expensive than you think - Construction Canada -

Cheers, Ralph

Sun/Shade & Urban Development - Feb 2012

The following relate to urban development and design in general, specific projects, and sun/shade issues.  They were derived from our twitter feed ( or @SunPosition) for the month of February 2012 and most contain links to news articles.

RT @Urban_Toronto: Sixty Colborne by Freed applies for 25 storeys -

RT @NewHomeBuyers: Glass Towers Undergo Refinements, Remain Desirable To Buyers -

The Legacy at Millennium Park, Chicago Wins Gold Design Award -

More high-rise fury as residents vow to block White City college development in London -

Newmarket examines high-rise cap, explore building height restrictions -
RT @UrbanLandInst: Out of reach: How sprawl jacks up the cost of ‘affordable’ housing -

'Planning on the fly' ripped - London Free Press -…

New Ryerson residence will be sleek new addition to skyline - CityNews -

Tower won’t replace parking lot - Residents prevent 22 story building near 57th Street - Hudson Reporter -

Mount Pleasant (Vancouver) residents protest high-rise proposal - CTV British Columbia -

Shanghai to put more limits on skyscraper foundation pits -…

Bell tolls in Dublin for Liberty Hall as new tower gets the green light -…

Dubai: another tallest hotel in the world -

Canada’s tallest condo tower, Aura awarded three additional storeys in Toronto - Daily Commercial News -

Halifax councillors to get a look at YMCA expansion bid - The Chronicle Herald -

Lighting installation, named Sunrise To Sunset, brightens up gloomy pedestrian underpass in South Shields UK -

English Heritage lodge formal objection to Liverpool waterfront development - UK news - The Guardian -

Vietnam parks its skyscraper projects - The Globe and Mail -

A new 35-storey skyscraper will loom over west London claim neighbours who vowed to fight the plan -

Neighbours concerned about shadow impact from 5-storey assisted living center approved for Watertown Square - -

Neighbours concerned about shadow impact from proposed 3-storey seniors home - Kingston This Week -

RT @Urbanation: RT @BuzzBuzzHome: Yes, @MenkesLife purchased 81 Peter St, Toronto, planning a 49-storey, 549 unit building

Market Street, Toronto, revitalization pushes forward -

RT @UrbanLandInst: Housing Expert Forum: What are some of the key characteristics of a healthy housing system?

Council props up Skye Halifax, sends towers to public hearing - The Chronicle Herald -

Proposed 50-storey Jarvis Street, Toronto, condo would cast shadow over Allan Gardens - -

Erroneous and deceptive renderings and 3-D models misrepresent proposed Vancouver building project height and shadow impact -

Rectangular version of Absolute. RT @NewHomeBuyers: Very cool high-rise proposed for Vancouver -

RT @BuzzBuzzHome: @brad_tor74 ...there are rumours of an 80+ coming!! But, Aura is confirmed at 78!

Yorkville: Why you should live in this historic Toronto hotspot - Homes - National Post

Fears 6 storeys might over-shadow picnic area and lake - ABC Newcastle NSW -

Lofty plans for Belmont building heights - ABC Newcastle NSW - Australian Broadcasting Corporation -

Burnaby preserving heritage with new development by Intracorp -

Plans for Ottawa high-rise complex on Baseline to change -

Condos proposed for riverfront street - Winnipeg Free Press -

Should Cities Limit Building Heights? - The Atlantic Cities -

Should Building Taller Be Much, Much Easier? - The Atlantic Cities -

Toronto building bubble may strain mortgages - -

Toronto News: High-rise plan looms over Allan Gardens - -

Schlegel plan casts shadow on residents - Windsor - CBC News -

@BuzzBuzzHome It's not often I hear shadow studies referred to as cool ha-ha.

@BuzzBuzzHome Funny you should ask. I did the shadow studies for Aura. Why?

Awesome project! RT @BuzzBuzzHome: At 78 storeys @AuraCondominium will be the tallest condo tower in Canada -

RT @BuzzBuzzHome: Sweeet!!! We've got a high resolution image for 30Roe by @mintocondos -

Wow, Azerbaijan planning to build world’s tallest skyscraper - 1,050 metres, 189 floors -

Brookfield’s New Glass Pavilion at World Financial Center -

Mississauga plaza re-development gets go-ahead -

Based on Freed’s history, it'll be great. RT @NewHomeBuyers: New Condo Coming to King St. East? -

RT @NewHomeBuyers: Coming Soon: Pinnacle Uptown -

RT @bildgta: Statement: Toronto Council request to be removed from the OMB -

RT @BuzzBuzzHome: Looks like Barrie is going mad for MADY's developments! LAKEview Condos is already 65% sold -

RT @Urban_Toronto: A heritage church may be lost on St. Clair W. for a condo development, but not because of the developers. Check out

RT @TorontoUpdate: Four Seasons Toronto gets closer to opening - USA TODAY

Edmonton downtown sidewalks will never be people places unless...

Guelph council defers decision on Gordon Street condos -

Upper West Side NYC residents opposed to plans to build a 20-storey development. Concern re shadow impact -

RT @TorontoUpdate: Toronto developer Brad J. Lamb to begin his first Calgary condominium project - National Post (blog) -

RT @Urbanation: City set to take on developer at OMB over King Street 'Restaurant Row' proposal -

Minto preparing to release master-planned community on legendary Windfields Farm in Oshawa -

Looking for awesome new construction in Mississauga? The answer is as clear as Crystal Uptown

RT @NewHomeBuyers: Pinnacle International is one busy builder. Do they have another Condo in store for Adelaide? -

RT @BrianPersaud: Interesting Development Sites Sold in Q4-2011 -

How could this NOT have a shadow impact on the gardens? > Six-story development proposed for Tremont Street in Boston -

MT @Urban_Toronto: Aura condos - 3 more stores approved by the city - now 78 storeys!

RT @Urban_Toronto: Aura condos is going to be a massive beast - 3 more storeys approved by the city - now 78 storeys!

RT @BrianPersaud: 1 York St by Menkes (proposed 70-storey twin towers) with 1426 units -

RT @torontoist: Take a first look at the new Globe and Mail office to be constructed at Front and Spadina -

America's Health Threat: Poor Urban Design > The Chronicle of Higher Education -

RT @BuzzBuzzHome: All new construction update from @AuraCondominium, Canada’s first 75 storey condo tower [VIDEO] -

Rise in tall building growth - Construction Canada -

Planners have huge role in shaping vision of cities - Vancouver Sun -

Cheers, Ralph