Thursday, May 12, 2016

Sun Glare While Driving – April 2016

The following relate to the dangers of sun glare while driving, and traffic safety in general. They were derived from our twitter feed @SunPosition

Read our weekly news summary “Sun Glare and Driving” at:

Several children hurt in school bus crash in Orange County | News 13 NOW

Seven children were taken to hospital with minor injuries after a car struck a loaded Orange County school bus head-on Tuesday morning, troopers said. 

The crash happened at about 8 a.m…

The driver of the Altima, Javanie Bandoo, 21, of Orlando, said sun glare was in his eyes, and he didn't see the school bus…

Sun blindness' a major safety issue in Spokane | KHQ Local News

In the last 24 hours there have been two pedestrian vs. vehicle wrecks that have been blamed on the sun.

This time of year, spring and fall are the worst because near the spring and fall equinox the sun is most directly due east and west depending on the time of day.

Sun glare or sun blindness is a major safety issue.  It's the cause of 3,000 accidents a year according to a 2013 study.

Right now the sun rise is around 6:30 am and sunset is close to 7:30 pm.

Sunlight also doesn't blind us all equally.  A study conducted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that older drivers are more likely to get involved in crashes if glare obstructs their vision.

In fact 38.5 percent of drivers involved in crashes related to glare were 45 years of age or older.

There are some things you can do to try and fight the glare.

First wear sunglasses and use your visor when necessary.

Make sure your windshield is clean, because if it's dirty the light can be filtered and more distracting.

Alter drive times or routes if you can and most importantly GO SLOW if you can't see…

Sun glare risk to UK motorists: How to stay safe |

Dozens of road deaths and thousands of injuries occur each year due to sun glare on drivers' windscreens. Since 2010 there have been around 28 road deaths and 3,900 injuries annually due to sun glare, according to the Department for transport. 

Spring and autumn are the key sun dazzle danger periods, as the rising and setting sun coincides with heavy morning and evening traffic.

Most dazzle-related accidents take place on A-roads and minor roads. Sun glare represents a significant seasonal driving problem – and is a big road safety issue in a country with one of the lowest road traffic accident rates in the world.

Here is some information and tips on how to deal with sun glare…

Sudden appearance

Sun glare is especially dangerous when a car turns into the sun, causing a sudden loss of vision or 'blindness'. Dazzling sun can also appear suddenly from behind trees and buildings, or in a reflected surface.


Attempting to overtake into low sunlight is especially dangerous, since the road ahead can be obscured. Head-on lorry crashes increase four fold around sunset.

Long shadows

Vehicles which cast long shadows are harder to see for approaching drivers and those turning into a road facing them.

Avoiding the dangers of sun glare

Slow down

In low sun it is important to keep your speed down and leave a larger gap between you and the vehicle in front. This will give you additional reaction time – especially important if you are driving through school zones or pedestrianised areas.

Keep your windscreen clean

Dirt and grime on your windscreen can exacerbate the effects of sun glare, so keep yours clean. Chips or cracks can also make glare worse, so ensure your windscreen glass is in good condition.

Sun visor

This simple device can be very effective at blocking the sun


Keep you visibility as high as possible by wearing sunglasses. Polarised sunglasses are especially effective at countering glare.

Dip your headlights

Keeping your headlights dipped will make you more visible to other road users.

If all else fails...

If sun glare is persistently making it difficult to see the road ahead, stop somewhere safe and wait until conditions improve.

Windshield condensation + sun glare >

Grants Pass Teenager Unhurt after Crashing into Josephine County Road Truck | KAJO

No one was injured when a Grants Pass teenager drove her car into a Josephine County Road Maintenance truck early Monday morning.

According to the Oregon State Police, troopers responded to the two-vehicle collision in the 4500-block of Jerome Prairie Road around 7:45 a.m..

Troopers said the 17-year-old girl told them she was unable to see out of the windshield of the Hyundai she was driving due condensation and sun glare…

You might be surprised >

The world's safest and most dangerous countries to drive in | MSN Autos

An issue that costs the world billions, and claims millions of lives every year. We look at how your country or your next holiday destination fares when it comes to driving safety. Take a look at where to find the world’s safest and most dangerous roads based on World Health Organization statistics for the amount of road deaths per 100,000 people…

Sun glare can be as dangerous as icy roads | Democrat & Chronicle

Just when you thought it was safe to travel the speed limit during your morning commute you realize there is a driving condition beyond snow and ice to worry about: Sun glare. 

Several major roads in Monroe County were backed up during Tuesday morning's commute which otherwise was clear of weather issues. While the cause of several minor accidents was unknown, sheriff's officials said sometimes all it takes to cause major traffic slow downs is a minor accident and a bright sun.

"Days like this you get a lot of rubbernecking between the sun and some accidents," said Monroe County Sheriff's Corporal John Helfer. "Sometimes it's absolutely nothing other than the sun because it can get really bad, especially coming over a crest. Sometimes you can't see anything, especially if there is a little moisture on your windshield."

And just like driving in the snow for the first time in November or December, people forget what it's like to drive in the bright sunshine during a spring morning commute when the sun starts to rise and set in the commute hours.

"Driving on a beautiful sunny day can provide stunning scenery, but it can also create a hazard if the driver’s view is compromised by a glaring sun," reads a AAA report.

In the hours after sunrise and before sunset — times when many children and other pedestrians and bikers are on the road — a dangerous glare can shine into drivers' eyes.

"This glare can make it much harder to see the road ahead and potential hazards creating an added risk to drivers," according to AAA. "When sun glare is an issue slow down and use extra caution especially while driving through school zones."

Here are some tips from AAA when driving into the sun:

  • Invest in polarized sunglasses — they can help reduce glare.
  • Utilize your sun visor — it can help to block out the sun.
  • Leave more following room — when the sun is in your eyes it can be hard to see what the car ahead is doing. This is one more time when it pays to leave more room between you and the next vehicle.
  • Drive with your headlights on to increase your visibility to other drivers.
  • Keep your windshield clean, inside and out.
  • Check your windshield for pitting and cracks.
  • Avoid storing papers or other items on the dashboard.
  • If having a difficult time seeing the road, use lane markings to help guide you.

"Rarely will visibility be absolutely perfect while driving, but if motorists know this and make the proper adjustments, you can minimize any additional risks that come with less-than-optimal visual conditions," according to AAA.

Sun glare may be to blame for deadly Route 70 accident | @nj1015

Sun glare could be to blame for an accident on Route 70 in Manchester that killed a Browns Mills man on Friday morning. 

Manchester police said Hilaro Guillen, 21, of Browns Mills, was killed after rear-ending another car, swerving into oncoming traffic and getting broadsided by yet another car…

Police said Guillen struck 2013 Honda Civic driven by Joshua Meeks, 21, of Medford, who was stopped in the eastbound lane to make a left turn onto Sam Pitts Road around 7:10 a.m. 

Guillen may have been blinded by sun glare and didn’t stop in time…

Are softer compounds needed for motorcycle tires?

RT  Christopher Hoffmann @HoffmannLawFirm:

Sun Glare Cause an Accident | St. Louis Automobile Accident Lawyer

> @HoffmannLawFirm Interesting stats on crash causes.

When sight is impaired, a driver is at risk. A vast majority of sun glare accidents occur in intersections and result from blinded drivers who fail to see other drivers or traffic control devices.

Car Accidents Caused by Sun Glare
  • A driver is unable to see a traffic light or stop sign and collides with another motor vehicle in the intersection. At high speeds, these accidents can be fatal.
  • A driver is unable to see the lane position or the road itself and may drift from the lane. This could cause a side sweep accident or a head-on collision.
  • Sun glare can make it difficult for a driver to see other cars on the road, leading to blind spot accidents.
  • Sun glare affects a driver’s ability to see the tail lights of the vehicle in front, leading to a rear-end collision when the lead vehicle comes to a stop or slows down.
  • A driver fails to notice oncoming traffic and makes a left turn.
  • A driver fails to see pedestrians or bicyclists at an intersection.
Sun Glare Is Worst During Rush Hour

It is important to note that sun glare is worst during morning and evening rush hours. During these times, the sun is low and towards the horizon and its angle toward the earth is such that it becomes a hazard to drivers. Here are some tips that will help you avoid accidents caused by sun glare:

  • Avoid driving when the windshield is dirty as it can amplify the effect of sun glare. Clean the windows and windshield often and check the windshield fluid level to make sure you do not run out of it when you need it the most.
  • Wear sun glasses that have anti-glare properties. This will not just protect you from glare but also from harmful effects of UV rays.
  • Do not look directly into the sun or a reflective surface or object.
  • Remember, sun glare is a concern not only during the summer, but winter as well. Snow accumulation can also cause glare.
  • If glare seems to be obstructing your view, slow down so that you have time to react in case a pedestrian or another vehicle appears in front of you.

RT David Hollingsworth @Ottawa_lawyer:

Response to OC Transpo Via Rail Crash

> @OttawaCitizen @TSBCanada Was sun reflection from the right side mirror ever ruled out?

The chair of the Transportation Safety Board of Canada says she's concerned the federal transportation ministry's responses to safety recommendations made after the fatal Ottawa bus-train crash aren't happening quickly enough and don't do enough. 

"There are a few good initiatives proposed by the regulator to address some of the safety deficiencies we identified in our investigation. But I'm concerned these efforts don't go far enough, fast enough," TSB chair Kathy Fox is quoted saying in a media release issued Monday...

The TSB made five recommendations after reconstructing and analyzing the 2013 crash, four of which were directed at Transport Canada…

read more at link below…

Sun glare can be made worse by wet road >

Sun's glare may have contributed to crash on A5 at DIRFT | Daventry Express

A young man died after trying to turn his car around on the A5 near DIRFT and inquest has heard.

Mark Grayson, 31, died following a car crash on November 12 last year on the A5 just north of DIRFT…

He stopped his Vauxhall Astra in the layby on the northbound side of the A5 just after the Danes Way roundabout, parking at the northern end.

In a statement read out by coroner Anne Pember, Mariusz Kryczek said he had left work at DIRFT at 9am and was driving home to Rugby and planned to go north along the A5. He said: “As I was approaching the end of the layby a car pulled out into side of the carriageway. I thought the driver wanted to turn around to go back the other way. He pulled out just a few metres from my car. I collided with the driver’s side of the Astra.”…

Mr Holloway added it was a sunny morning, but that the sun was very low at that time and the road had some damp patches…

PC Wilkins told the inquest the police had restaged a similar vehicle pulling out from the layby to turn south, and the manoeuvre took two-and-a-half seconds.

He also said that by using computer models they had recreated the position of the sun that morning, and that it was very low in the sky and from Mr Grayon’s position would have been shining almost exactly from the southern direction of the A5. The strong low sun, coupled with any potential glare from the damp road could have caused Mr Grayson problems.

He concluded Mr Grayson may have carried out the manoeuvre without ‘sufficient observations’ which the sun and conditions may have made worse…

I'd rather be driving >

Sun blinds Aeronca pilot | via @genavnews

The pilot, who was landing to the west on a private, grass airstrip in Port Gibson, Miss., stated that as the Aeronca 7AC touched down, he became blinded by the setting sun that was low on the horizon.

The plane subsequently veered to the right into a tree line, which resulted in substantial damage to both wings and the right main landing gear...

The NTSB determined the probable cause as the pilot’s failure to maintain directional control during the landing roll. Contributing to the accident was sun glare.

Police investigating pedestrian and property damage collisions | Lethbridge Police Services

On April 21 just before 8 a.m. police responded to a report of a pedestrian collision involving an elderly woman. Investigation determined a 2006 Cadillac SRX, operated by a 46-year-old male, was travelling eastbound on 3 Avenue North when it struck a northbound 76-year-old female who was crossing 3 Avenue from 12 Street North. EMS transported the victim to hospital and she was subsequently transferred to Calgary for treatment of serious injuries. She remains in hospital at this time. Police believe sun glare was a factor in the collision...

Police Charge City  Man in Relation Thursday Collision  - Victim in Another Collision Sent to Calgary | Lethbridge News Now

Charges are pending as an investigation continues into a north-side pedestrian collision just before 8:00 Thursday morning. 

A car being driven by a 46-year-old man, was travelling east-bound on 3rd Avenue North when it struck a 76-year-old woman who was crossing at 12 Street North.

The victim was taken to the Regional hospital and then transferred to a Calgary hospital, where she is being treated for serious injuries. Police believe sun glare was a factor in the collision…

Four examples of sun glare dangers at rail crossings...

1) low sun in line with oncoming train,

2) sun in line with signal lights,

3) sun glare washing out signal lights, and

4) sun reflection from your vehicle's mirrors.

Good advice for driving in sun glare >

A long weekend on the road | @RISKAFRICA_Mag

A good part of defensive driving is not only being cautious of the actions of others but also adjusting your driving according to visibility conditions…

Sun glare

Some people resort to wearing polarised sunglasses at night to reduce the glare reflected from road surfaces and the car’s bonnet and windscreen. International estimates say sun glare is responsible for up to 3 000 accidents per year, which is often at its worst during rush hour in the mornings and late afternoons, and especially so during South Africa’s winter months.

The Sunglass Association of America however, warns against wearing amber coloured or polarised night driving glasses as they do not reduce glare and can even make it more difficult for your eyes to compensate for glare.

Other steps to avoid glare include:

  • Investing in polarised glasses does help reduce glare and prevent your eyes from becoming tired from squinting during the day although wearing them for long periods during daylight hours can also reduces the difficulty your eyes have adapting at night.
  • Drive with headlights on so your visibility to other drivers is increased.
  • Ensure you have an adequate following distance to stop suddenly.
  • Do not use vinyl-based cleaners on your dashboard as it increases reflection.
  • Avoid driving cars with light-coloured dashboards.
  • Immediately slow down if you are suddenly blinded by glare.
  • Never overtake during low sunlight...

Be Careful, it's Nice Out There | Pellettieri, Rabstein & Altman

Finally, the cold dreary days of winter are behind us and spring is in the air. With the warmer, nicer weather, comes an increase in motor vehicle accidents, and personal injuries motorcyclists, bike riders and pedestrians.

Drivers and pedestrians have the right to use the roadways, and have mutual duties and obligations to do so in a safe manner, and to look out for each other. More people are out walking and using some portion of the roads during the nice weather, and longer days. Both drivers and pedestrians must use reasonable care to observe anyone crossing into their paths of travel.

Motorists are faced with new challenges as the weather changes. Conditions that block normal observations, such as sun glare, fog, rain and lightening can lead to accidents...

Accidents mar morning commute | The Telegraph

A Wilton woman was seriously injured in a car crash Wednesday morning on Route 101 that police say might have been caused by sun glare. The accident was the fourth and last in a series of crashes that started after 6 a.m. and involved six vehicles and injured five people… 

Sun glare possible factor >

Locals hurt in Milford crashes | Monadnock Ledger 

Sun glare may have been a factor in a crash early Wednesday morning that sent a Wilton woman to the hospital with serious injuries, police said. 

Jillian Beaucher’s car was struck from behind on Route 101 in Milford near the Route 12 overpass by driver Bryan Thompson of Manchester, police say...

Sun glare may have been a factor in this accident, according to police.

Slick roads contributed to a number of other accidents on Route 101, one of which involved a Peterborough man.

Alexander Scribner was attempting a  U-turn on Route 101 and was struck by a vehicle driven by Steven Johnson of Merrimack. Scribner was transported to the hospital with unknown injuries.

Sun glare may have been a factor in this accident, according to police…

RT TSB of Canada @TSBCanada:

Article by Board member John Clarkson: As technology changes, so too does accident investigation

For more than 25 years, the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) has investigated marine accidents from coast to coast to coast. When something goes wrong, we dig deep to find out what happened—and then we dig deeper still to learn why. Because it’s only through understanding the causes and contributing factors of an occurrence that steps can be taken to prevent it from happening again.

TSB reports are based on in-depth interviews, rigorous analysis, and data from some of the most sophisticated scientific equipment available. In fact, since 1997, the TSB has increasingly used navigational software to access a wide array of navigational and communications data, and then played it back in real time to study the final seconds, minutes or even hours of a voyage. Data from Electronic Chart Systems, Automatic Identification Systems, Voyage Data Recorders and onboard recordings such as bridge audio: today we gather all of it. Our Engineering Branch can then use this information to create everything from a mathematical model of a ship to a 3-D picture of the local environment, including shorelines and the placement of any nearby vessels. In some cases, we can overlay the information on top of the vessel’s actual track, creating an animation, complete with audio and special effects!

Over the years, computer-aided recreations have played a role in a number of TSB investigations…

Tips For Safe Driving On A Road Trip |

It’s almost that time of year again, the weather’s getting nice, you’ve got some vacation time coming up, it’s time to take a road trip...

The best thing you can do when taking a road trip is to plan your trip. If you know the best times to drive and the details of your route, you’ll be able to reduce your risk of accident. There are several things to keep in mind when planning your trip, here are a few of them:

  • Prepare your car. Simple car maintenance can help prevent accidents. Make sure your lights and brakes work correctly. Check your air pressure and tire tread. Check that your windshield wipers, windshield washer fluid, and your defrost are all in good working order. Also while on the road, make sure to routinely check these things to make sure everything on your car works as it should.
  • Look at the weather for everywhere you are going to be driving. If there are any dangerous weather conditions, plan to avoid those routes or give yourself time to pull over.
  • Check into the road construction delays along your route. There are several websites and apps that can help you understand where any road construction is happening on your route, so you can plan accordingly.
  • Give yourself plenty of time. Impaired driving is one of the main causes of accidents. Give yourself a break at least every two to four hours to stretch your legs and get some exercise. Do not drive when you are tired or at night when fatigue and highway hypnosis can cause you to become impaired. Also make sure that you schedule eight hours of sleep for every night.
  • Do not rush to your destination, this will lead to speeding which can put you at risk of an accident.
  • If you are traveling through cities, keep in mind rush hour times. Rush hour is a dangerous time to drive and can be incredibly stressful if you are in an unfamiliar city. If possible, plan your route so you are not in the city during rush hour.
  • Plan for the sun. Sun glare can cause accidents, so try to plan your trip so you are not driving into the sun.
  • Get roadside assistance and prepare a road kit. So in case you do get into an accident or your car breaks down, you can get help when you need it.

Cheers, Ralph

Sun/Shade & Urban Development – April 2016

The following relate to urban development and urban design in general, and to specific projects with sun/shade issues in particular. They were derived from our twitter feed @SunPosition

Check out our weekly news summary

“Sun, Shadow & Urban Development” at

What are your thoughts about shadowing from proposed building developments in your neighbourhood?

Please help us out by taking our short survey

If you haven't visited our Facebook site before, check it out now...

Shadow concerns >

City opposes Edmonton developer's plans for 16-storey tower near Whyte Avenue | Edmonton Sun

An Edmonton developer hopes to convince councillors to let him build a 16-storey tower just off Whyte Avenue despite opposition from city officials…

McLash will present his case to rezone the site at an April 18 public hearing, but officials have already stated their opposition in a report headed to city council. They say the character of the project doesn’t fit with the Strathcona Area Redevelopment Plan…

McLash said he doesn’t plan to decrease the height of the tower because it’s already been reduced from 20 storeys to address concerns heard at a recent open house. The building was also redesigned to eliminate sun shadow from March to September on the north side of Whyte Avenue, he said…

When it was presented to the city’s executive committee in February, proponents assured councillors that the building, which would be situated at 81 Avenue and 105 Street, would be far enough back from Whyte Avenue (82 Avenue) that it would not cast a substantial shadow on neighbouring properties.

Those claims were backed by diagrams included in the report. But comments collected at a public meeting still expressed concern that the building would set a precedent for other similar applications that would be contrary to the Strathcona Area Redevelopment Plan.

Other issues mentioned by neighbours were increased traffic and a change to the heritage character of the neighbourhood. The Edmonton Design Committee also pointed out the shadow of the building would limit the functionality of the rooftop open space of neighbouring properties.

Height reduction to reduce shadowing >

VCAT orders redesign for development at Nylex Clock site | ArchitectureAU

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal (VCAT) has ordered the developer of a $1 billion apartment development in Cremorne, Melbourne, to amend its design due to its excessive height and high proportion of one-bedroom apartments…

The tribunal concluded the proposal did not “deliver an acceptable planning outcome.” In its order, it gave the developer an opportunity to resubmit a proposal that would address the tribunal’s concerns.

The tribunal found both towers on the site “exceed the recommended building height of RL38” (relative level in metres). The 18-storey southern tower “rises to a height of AHD 62.25” (metres above sea level) and “the extent to which it exceeds the recommended height is not acceptable,” the tribunal reported.

It also found the proposed 18-storey tower will have a shadow impact on the Yarra River, as well as causing apartments in the lower levels of a neighbouring building to have “about 1.5 to 2 hours of access to sunlight between midday and 2pm at the equinox.”

The tribunal heard evidence from expert witnesses including architects Robert McGauran (MGS Architects) and Jim Holdsworth, who both recommended a reduction in height of four storeys. “We acknowledge that such a reduction would in all likelihood address our concerns, but a lesser reduction may also be acceptable,” the tribunal stated… via @ArchitectureAU

@Urban_Toronto @mymadisonhome Nice-looking project. Were the terraces added to reduce shadowing or to increase unit values?

RT Construction Dive @constructdive: Burj Khalifa developer plans to construct new 'world's tallest building' in Dubai:

image via

In the ongoing race to build higher and higher, Dubai developer Emaar Properties has announced its plans for The Tower, which it said will "be a notch taller" than the current world’s tallest building, Dubai’s 2,717-foot Burj Khalifa, The Wall Street Journal reported…

RT New Republic @NewRepublic: Cooling down the world's cities, one rooftop at a time:

City life is hot. Baked by the sun, buildings and roads exhale heat at night, raising urban temperatures by up to 22 degrees. The infrastructure that makes cities so attractive to the billions of people who live in them—the subway cars, street kiosks, air conditioning— belch out more warmth. And it’s only supposed to get worse.

By 2050, 2.5 billion more people are projected to leave the countryside for the city; in the United States alone, urban land will more than double by 2100. Faced with what scientists call “the urban heat island effect,” cities around the world are encouraging the development of roof gardens. These blankets of wildflowers, grasses, and sometimes even vegetables reduce water runoff, absorb carbon dioxide, and lower temperatures…

Developer scales back 'skinny tower' to reduce shadow impact | Boston Globe

The Swiss developer behind a proposed skinny tower on Tremont Street overlooking Boston Common has shaved off more floors from the building — again. 

Maurice Dabbah originally approached Boston officials with plans for a 355-foot tower, totaling 32 stories, at 171 Tremont St. Neighbors balked, and Dabbah’s team last year knocked the height back to 255 feet, and 20 stories.

The Friends of the Public Garden complained publicly in January about the project, citing a 1990 state law aimed at limiting shadows cast on the Common from new buildings.

So Dabbah lowered the tower again, to 235 feet and 19 stories, according to figures provided by O’Neill and Associates, a Boston public affairs firm representing Dabbah. The width of the tower remains at 50 feet.

Michael Sherry, a director at O’Neill, said Dabbah expects to file a revised proposal with the Boston Redevelopment Authority later in April.

Ross Cameron, a senior associate at Elkus Manfredi, the architectural firm that designed the building, said the top floors on the revised design step back from the street, much like a small staircase, to curb the effects of shadows on the city’s oldest park.

“We shaped the top of the building specifically to reduce the shadow impact. The series of steps back is designed to match exactly the angle of the sun in a ‘worst case scenario,’ ” Cameron said. “We’re mostly concealed by shadows that are already being cast by larger buildings nearby.”… via @BostonGlobe

RT Construct Canada @ConstructCanada:

The top 10 Toronto developments on BuzzBuzzHome in March 2016

See list here  via @BuzzBuzzHome

22-storey tower planned for Westside | El Paso Inc.

Florida-based Meyers Group has plans to build a 22-story hotel and apartment tower in El Paso, a project that represents a huge bet on the city’s future and would take development to new heights. 

As planned, the tower would have more floors but not be taller than the city's tallest building – the Wells Fargo office tower in Downtown, which opened in the 1970s as State National Bank.

Plans show the Meyers Group's tower would rise 256 feet. The Wells Fargo tower rises 302 feet, according to Borderplex Realty Trust, which owns the building...

Previous smaller proposal was rejected over shadow on Victoria Manalo Draves Park >

Deli Board and Fondue Cowboy Potentially Threatened By Condo Proposal On Folsom | SFist

A proposal for a 46-unit residential building at Folsom and Russ Streets would, potentially, mean the demolition of several retail businesses facing Folsom Street on that block…

The developer, who's only just submitted preliminary plans to Planning that may still be rejected, had previously proposed a 10-unit building at 190 Russ Street, at the rear of this same site, that was rejected over a shadow that it would cast for part of the year, 42 minutes per day, on the park across the street, Victoria Manalo Draves Park. The new proposal is a larger building the same height as that one, six stories, with more Folsom frontage, and it's unclear why the developer, Golden Properties, believes that this idea will fly if that one didn't. But perhaps they've made some new accommodation for the shadow…

RT Donny B @thetorontoblog:

The 1 Bloor condo tower dominates the view north from Norman Jewison Park at Gloucester Street

> @thetorontoblog Fortunately it's not south of the park.

> RT Donny B @thetorontoblog: @SunPosition The park's trees and plants are immensely grateful for that!

> @thetorontoblog  And the people too, no doubt.

> RT Donny B @thetorontoblog: @SunPosition I'm among those who are happy to still be able to walk through the park in sunlight every day

Shadowing reduced on Jesse Ketchum Park >

One Bloor West gets a more refined look | Yonge Street

Mizrahi Developments turned a lot of heads last spring when it unveiled its proposal for 1 Bloor West, the long-time home of Stollery’s menswear. At 318 metres, the Foster + Partners building would have been out-heighted only by The CN Tower, soundly beating out the 257-metre One Bloor East building that’s risen across the street.

Last month, Mizrahi presented a refined plan to the city planning department and to the Design Review Panel, taking the height down to 304 metres—72 storeys instead of 84 in order to minimize shadow impact on Jesse Ketchum Park…

Westside resident starts petition to vote down proposed Shadow Mountain high-rise | KFOX

People are already unhappy with the proposed 22-story building that could go up on Shadow Mountain Drive. 

A petition has been started on to vote down the building.

El Paso resident Lindsay Kronmiller, who helped start the petition called "Fight the High Rise: Keep Our Mountains Tall," said she is opposed to the mixed-use tower…

SolarWindow Process Breakthrough Generates Electricity for Next Generation Skyscraper Glass | North American Clean Energy

SolarWindow Technologies, Inc. announced that performance tests of its transparent electricity-generating coatings for glass and flexible plastics have produced favorable outcomes for glass-to-glass lamination processes. The test results are especially promising for expanding the application of SolarWindow coatings beyond standard window glass to include high-performance laminated glass – a fast growing segment of the commercial and architectural glass market…

Long shadows create political hurdle for S.F. skyscraper project | San Francisco Chronicle

The elderly Chinese men and women who gather each morning in Portsmouth Square for their tai chi routines would seem to have little to do with a proposed hotel, office and condo complex a half-mile away at First and Mission streets.

But in compact San Francisco, where high end and low end mingle cheek by jowl, the shadows that the proposed 2 million-square-foot Oceanwide Center at 50 First St. would cast on two Chinatown open spaces have emerged as the biggest political hurdle to the approval of what would probably be downtown San Francisco’s last mega-project.

Designed by British Pritzker Prize-winning architect Norman Foster, Oceanwide Center would include a 905-foot skyscraper with more than 1 million square feet of office space and 19 floors of condominiums. A second, shorter tower would contain 169 hotel rooms with an additional 154 condos. The taller of the two buildings would be the city’s second tallest, topped only by the Salesforce Tower, which is under construction at 101 First St. and will reach 970 feet…

But critics argue that economic benefits don’t justify a violation of 1984’s Proposition K — the “Sunlight Ordinance” — which blocks construction of any building over 40 feet that casts an adverse shadow on Recreation and Park Department property unless the Planning Commission decides the shadow is insignificant.

The project would throw a shadow on Portsmouth Square between 8:05 and 9:10 a.m. from late October to early February. It would shadow St. Mary’s Square, also in Chinatown, in March and September. It would also shadow Justin Herman Plaza, at the foot of Market Street, from mid-October to late February, and Union Square from early May to early August.

“It really clobbers Portsmouth Square,” said Allan Low, an attorney and a member of the Recreation and Park Commission.

After six months of negotiating with the city, Oceanwide Holdings — a Chinese developer that also has projects in New York and Los Angeles — has agreed to mitigate the shadows with a $12 million endowment for recreation and parks programming in Chinatown, a fund that will help pay for amenities like sports, after-school programs and senior fitness programs, said Low, who helped hammer out the deal.

“I am loath to negotiate a cash-for-shadow deal, but to their credit, Oceanwide did recognize the significant impact their project will have on Portsmouth Square and the Chinatown parks,” he said.

He said funding for programming is desperately needed.

“We can build the parks, but we have to have money for programs and services for the people in the parks,” Low said. “For the majority of people in Chinatown, the parks and recreation centers are the only open spaces to go outside of their SRO rooms.”

The commitment to Chinatown recreation is not enough to appease those who have fought to keep shadows out of city parks. Bill Maher, a former supervisor and director of the Department of Parking and Traffic who wrote Prop. K, said trading shadows for dollars is “flatly illegal.” Prop. K’s shadow-limiting powers are clear, he said.

“Planners have completely disregarded the voters’ decision on Prop. K,” Maher said. “They have simply administratively overruled the voters. They have changed the rules, without legal authority, to say the economic value of the project is the driving force. If that is the case, no park will survive.”

He added: “Once you build a building, you can never get the park back. Downtown will become a perennial wind tunnel of darkness.”

Attorney Sue Hestor, who also worked on Prop. K legislation, agreed.

“Everyone throws money at things, but shadows are shadows,” said Hestor, who has long been involved in battles over development. “Portsmouth Square is the living room for people who live in 10-by-10 rooms,” she said…

Cheers, Ralph

Miscellaneous “Sun & Shadow” Items – April 2016

The following are miscellaneous sun, shade, solar and solar energy facts and comments. They were derived from our twitter feed @SunPosition

Our monthly sunrise/sunset tables have been updated.

Vancouver will have 14 hrs daylight by Apr 19. Sorry Toronto, you'll have to wait until the 27th.

Toronto sunrise / sunset table updated for April -

Ottawa sunrise / sunset table updated for April -

Vancouver sunrise / sunset table updated for April -

Heads-up @shawnmicallef and @Banquos_Banquet, next Torontohenge is on Apr 19 | Torontohenge 2016

Photo: By Sevtibidou (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Torontohenge: Watch the sun rise in line with Toronto 's major east-west streets on Tues Apr 19 at 6:27 AM

Torontohenge is coming! Great for photographers, not so great for drivers.

UV peaks at 1:01 PM in Ottawa this week (week of Apr 18). Take extra precautions 3 hrs before to 3 hrs after.

UV peaks at 1:16 PM in Toronto this week (week of Apr 18). Take extra precautions 3 hrs before to 3 hrs after.

Don't forget Torontohenge tomorrow morning Apr 19. Sunrise at 6:27 AM. Fingers crossed for clear skies.
> RT Shawn Micallef @shawnmicallef: Tomorrow in street grid action.

RT Shawn Micallef @shawnmicallef: A little bike ride spin tonight after a day riding laptop. 1st of season. Nice to be rolling again, nice to be light.
> @shawnmicallef If you're out riding at 6:27 AM tomorrow, watch for Torontohenge.

RT Metro Morning @metromorning:  A special sunrise this am. Torontohenge sees the sunrise align with the city's street grid. 6:27 am.

image via @metromorning

> @metromorning That is a great shot. Did you take it? FYI, the next Torontohenge will be on Aug 23rd.

Is it a billboard or a sundial?

image via

See time-lapse video -

Can't believe it's been 8 yrs since our SunChips 'solar' billboard was unveiled on EarthDay in Oakland CA

RT Leigh Buchan @lives2talk: @SunPosition Have been up near Horseshoe Valley! Lot of solar farms cropping up! Only 1-2 boards cause sunglare; others positioned properly!
> @lives2talk Yeah, a lot of solar farms have popped up in the area.
> RT Leigh Buchan @lives2talk: Are there regulations on which directions they can face?> @lives2talk The direction of the panels is set to maximize their solar exposure.

Fun fact: Toronto gets almost an hour more daylight than Miami these days.

Cheers, Ralph

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Sunrise & Sunset Times - Rio2016


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Cheers, Ralph