August Newsletter

1) RECENT TURTLE INFO:

a) HATCHLINGS IN THE PARK SOON –
THROUGHOUT AUGUST AND EARLY SEPTEMBER!  

We would love some pics to add to the gallery on the webpage
613-572-1246 or harbourturtles@gmail.com
Thanks so very much to all of you who have contributed so far.  Awesome support!

b) THANKS TO DAVID MCCALLUM FOR HIS GREAT VIDEO: CHAIRS FOR TURTLE WATCHING.
Although the chairs have now found new homes, we had a really fun evening.  No worries.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0pzSUUc06Zw  for turtle link

c) THANKS TO THE CITY’S PLANNING DEP’T FOR INCLUDING TURTLE NESTING AREAS AS SIGNIFICANT WILDLIFE HABITAT IN SECTION 6.1.14 OF THE 4th DRAFT OF THE REVISED OFFICIAL PLAN

OTHER NEWS:

2) HELP SAVE KINGSTON’S DOWNTOWN
3) THIRD CROSSING SURVEY?
4) 401 EMERGENCY DETOUR ROUTE + KINGSTON MILLS REPAIRS
5) OFFICIAL PLAN 4th DRAFT PUBLIC MEETING, AUG 10
6) MAP OF K&P TRAIL CONNECTION TO THE DOWNTOWN
7) HERITAGE CONCERNS: BARRIEFIELD + ALL KINGSTON
8) VANCOUVER’S VELO VISION: SAFE BIKING FOR ALL
9) CYCLE GUIDELINES: CITY OF TORONTO
10) MIGRATORY BIRD POLICY
11) DOWNTOWN BEACHES AROUND THE WORLD

2) HELP SAVE KINGSTON’S DOWNTOWN
A number of our members have expressed dissatisfaction with the way the city is promoting destruction of the downtown by encouraging more student housing in the city’s heart.  Currently IN8 Design is enticing prospective investors by providing free-of-charge furnishings and property management along with an aggressive marketing campaign targeting students for the proposed 17 storey high rise at the old downtown movie theatre. They are also saying they will do great things for the community by questionable “community benefits”. Do we really want this high rise in the heart of our downtown?
What most tourists love about the downtown is its “small town feel”, its “human scale” – that it’s such a peaceful place in comparison with larger cities like Toronto and Montreal.
Problems:
1) Doesn’t fit with surrounding downtown heritage buildings
2) Causes wind and shadow problems
3) Community benefits not adequate in exchange for so much height.  The proposed high rise is double the height of neighbouring buildings.
4) Better downtown Intensification can be done with mid-rises in the 60+ vacant downtown lots. We all want downtown intensification – residents committed to the downtown, not investors, transients and units rented out as Air B&Bs that undercut local hotels.
5) Mid-rises are being advocated in Toronto now.  Why is Kingston so far behind the times?
6) Building would increase traffic congestion in an already congested area of town.
7) It would set a precedent for other high rises and more congestion.
8) The Kingston Centre is a better location for high rises.
A twenty minute downhill walk to the downtown, great transit and great views to the water.

Councilor Rob Hutchison’s take:
http://www.thewhig.com/2016/08/01/councillor-not-keen-on-trading-benefits-for-height-of-capitol

Another comment received: “The project is bad planning and bad for Kingston and nothing will change that. See Vision for Kingston’s media release on Facebook.”

Correspondence from Judith Hazlett, concerned citizen:
“Kingston is presently in a very precarious state, with developers urging the city council to let cement towers into the very heart of our town. The issue now appears to be “community benefits.” Tacking the front of the old Capitol Theatre to a cement tower right in the heart of our historic town does NOT make it a benefit. Even adding electric charging stations does NOT make it a benefit. Just say “No.” There is no “benefit” to be found in wrecking the heart of Kingston.
Send an email to: CBenefit223Princess@cityofkingston.ca by Tuesday, Aug. 9.
Copy and paste this address and urge the City to conform to the well-considered height restrictions in the current by-laws.)  Also copy Paige Agnew, Director of Planning and Greg Newman before the Aug 9 deadline pagnew@cityofkingston.ca, and gnewman@cityofkingston.ca.”

3) THIRD CROSSING
https://mayorpaterson.com/2016/07/27/preliminary-design-for-the-third-crossing/, or https://youropinion.cityofkingston.ca/s/thirdcrossing/
WHEN WILL THIS DEBATE HAPPEN?
THE WHOLE QUESTION OF WHETHER OR NOT THE THIRD CROSSING IS A GOOD IDEA HAS NEVER EVER BEEN DEBATED BY COUNCIL! 

We need to know just what will have to be sacrificed in order to build this without increasing taxes?  Parks and Trails?  Improved and expanded transit? Improved cycling infrastructure? The Waterfront Master Plan? Affordable housing? Subsidized housing? Subsidized dental care? Trees? The list goes on.
According to one of our concerned members, The city’s survey on the 3rd crossing assumes people want the crossing and is designed to justify a much higher price.  What do you think?

4) 401 EMERGENCY DETOUR ROUTE + KINGSTON MILLS REPAIRS
According to reliable sources at the Ontario Ministry of Transportation, when there is an accident on the 401, drivers do not pay attention to the suggested emergency detour routes.  Instead they follow their GPS – creating havoc in downtown Kingston.  The current emergency detour route off the 401 between Hwy 15 and Division goes north to Sunbury.  This recommended route will remain during the proposed federal improvements to the Kingston Mills locks.

Kingston Mills Road Closure To Begin Early September
Rideau Canal National Historic Site

Parks Canada is investing an unprecedented $3 billion dollars over 5 years to support infrastructure work to heritage, visitor, waterway and highway assets located within national historic sites, national parks, and national marine conservation areas across Canada. These investments represent the largest federal infrastructure plan in the history of Parks Canada.

Parks Canada would like to thank the community for their cooperation and understanding as we complete this important infrastructure work. We will be sending out additional information bulletins as dates are set. Updates will also be provided on our website:www.pc.gc.ca/rcInfrastructure. If you would like to receive community updates on this project, please e-mailRideauCanal.info@pc.gc.ca.

The Kingston Mills Road closure, for the repair and replacement of the Kingston Mills swing and fixed bridge, will begin early in September. Once Kingston Mills Road is closed, the closest alternate vehicle route across the Rideau Canal is Highway 401 just south of Kingston Mills Road. This route can be accessed from Battersea Road or Highway 15. Sunbury Road also offers vehicle crossing of the Rideau Canal north of the Kingston Mills site. Kingston Mills Road is expected to reopen mid May 2017.

5) OFFICIAL PLAN MEETING:
Wed. Aug 10, Memorial Hall, City Hall, 216 Ontario St., 5 pm.
Presentation on 4th draft revisions: 6 pm
“We continue to refine the Official Plan Update with input from the public and we want to show how that input has been reflected in this latest revision of this important, city-shaping document,” says Greg Newman, manager, policy planning. More info? http://www.CityofKingston.ca/OPupdate.

6) MAP OF K&P TRAIL CONNECTION TO THE DOWNTOWN
https://www.cityofkingston.ca/documents/10180/42317/Project_UrbanKPTrail_Map.pdf/56340e3e-7392-4ada-8598-40cb8805308a
The trail is currently under construction.  The section near Binnington Court along Dalton has been completed.
Looks great!  Go up and have a look!
Suggestions for tree plantings?  inverarymary@yahoo.com

7) HERITAGE CONCERNS IN BARRIEFIELD AND THE CITY AS A WHOLE
Here is what Christine Sypnowich has to say:

“It is astonishing that the consultants and staff totally ignore the recommendations of the respected heritage consultant, Andre Schienman, who in his report, stresses the importance of the open lands (Horton, DND) as heritage attributes of Barriefield village.  The lack of credence given to these aspects of the district that are vital in their contribution to the village’s heritage character means the Plan is seriously flawed.  Moreover, the Plan is weak in its provisions for new construction, with sloppy wording that gives conflicting messages, and in a number of other respects as well.

In addition, the new Plan fails to provide for the continuation of the practice of alterations coming to the heritage committee for advice and recommendations to Council.  There is a move afoot at the City, as you probably know, for alterations in heritage districts to go straight to Staff, cutting out the heritage committee’s role.  Staff are much more susceptible to pressure from pro-development interests and moreover lack the heritage expertise and experience of members of the committee.  So this is a very retrograde move, reversing over 30 years of good heritage practice in Kingston.

More info?  christine.sypnowich@queensu.ca

8) VANCOUVER’S VELO VISION:
SAFE BIKING FOR ALL AGES:

A few great ideas we could adopt in Kingston.  Relax and enjoy.
https://vimeo.com/50319697

9) CYCLING GUIDELINES: CITY OF TORONTO
Brush up your cycling skills
https://www.cycleto.ca/sites/default/files/CyclistHandbook_English_2016_0.pdf

10) MIGRATORY BIRD POLICY
A really fascinating piece on Toronto’s Migratory Bird Policy here.  Relax and enjoy!
https://twitter.com/schwartzonomics/status/759450852683689986

Thanks to Greg Newman in Planning for making sure some provisions for migratory birds are included in the 4th revision of the Official Plan.  Here is his most recent communication:

“Wildlife habitat, which would include migratory bird habitat, is protected as a Natural Heritage “B” feature (see 6.1.4). Development and site alteration within a Natural Heritage “B” feature will not be permitted unless it has been demonstrated that there will be no negative impacts on the natural heritage feature or its ecological functions. An “ecological site assessment”, described in 6.1.14, can be requested when the presence of a natural heritage feature and area is not known but is suspected. This assessment is commonly undertaken in rural areas during the migratory birds breeding season to determine the presence of protected bird species (e.g., bobolink, whip-poor-will, meadowlark, etc.). I will see if there are other areas where a more explicit reference to ‘migratory bird habitat’ may be made.”

11) DOWNTOWN BEACHES AROUND THE WORLD
via Hennie Marsh

I found this article amazing, cites creating beaches!  The trend is heading to the US.  I looked at this considering Kingston’s extensive waterfront: concrete, pavement and grass.  No beaches, no places to really relax.  Walk, sit and move on.
https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2016/jul/11/10-best-urban-beaches-city-riversides-europe-paris-berlin-london

Trust you are all enjoying this great summer weather.
Cheers,
Mary Farrar, President,
Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour