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Letters to the editor, August 7, 2014

These are the letters and comments from the print edition


Welcome to your redesign

This issue of The Coast has been in the works for years. Two-and-a-half, maybe three. Because on top of putting out the paper each week, we’ve also been redesigning it, pecking away at an alternate-universe Coast in our office. Shorter than the old version, thanks to looming changes in the sizes of newsprint the pulp mills will manufacture, we kept sweating the details to make the updated Coast pack a bigger punch. And now—taa daa!—we’re sharing it with you. The Coast has gone through a redesign several times in its 21 years, and certain constants hold: The paper has never looked or read better, and some people are going to hate it anyway. New this time is a deliberate effort to distinguish the newspaper Coast from the electronic Coast. If we started The Coast from scratch today, we would begin as a news site, no mucking around with ink and dead trees. But eventually we would need the hardcopy version, too. As Malcolm Gladwell has pointed out, paper as a tool for communication (albeit a much older and therefore less sexy technology than computers) has many advantages to electronic communications. With this redesign, we’re doubling down on print’s advantages. Gone are the phonebook-style entertainment listings. Online and on your phone, our listings are the same as ever, the most comprehensive collection of events, entertainment and movie times in the province, searchable, shareable, innumerable. But in print we are going for quality over quantity with the new Sure Things section, an authoritative and entertaining guide to this week’s best happenings. Every Coast story aims to give you something unique from other media, and we’ve made more room for those stories. We’ve revamped our Arts section (merging the old Music, Arts and The Scene), doubled space for Food & Drink, created The City civic affairs section and made loads of other tweaks. Now if we got it right, opening your copy of The Coast every week should be like opening a window on a Halifax that others can’t see. —Kyle Shaw

Crime by car

I live in the north end of Halifax and walk to and from my place of employment in the downtown core. I don’t expect anyone to slam on their brakes to stop for me and am happy to wait until the closest car goes by but I do expect drivers to stop when, from a distance, they see me step down onto the street. All too often drivers clearly refuse to stop and point instead to the marked crosswalk a couple of blocks further up the street. I have even had drivers swerve around me as I am in the street crossing, drivers who had plenty of time to stop but who seem intent on making some kind of point instead. It is surprising how much of the public discussion around this issue seems to be centered on the pedestrian rather than the driver. It may be foolish to walk out into a crosswalk without looking, but it is not a criminal offense. Not yielding to a pedestrian, either in a crosswalk or waiting at a crosswalk, is a criminal offense. —Rexanne Phillips, via email

Buying local sausages isn’t what prices working-class people out of the homes they’ve rented for decades. -posted by John Hutton at on “Gentrification affects us all,” Debate Club by Evan, July 31

Fix the Khyber. We spend far more money on worse things. I hate seeing heritage buildings sold, especially after what Starfish Properties did to most of Barrington. —Sarah Sawler

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