March Newsletter 2017

Dear Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour:
Trust you have all been enjoying the really lovely mild winter and are now looking forward to spring.  Up front here, I am asking if anyone would like to get involved with these monthly updates.  I could use a bit of help with final editing of the compiled  first drafts.  

1) PARKING STUFF
2) FRONTENAC HERITAGE FOUNDATION EVENTS AND CONCERNS:
    a) ASK AN EXPERT
    b) DRY WALL FESTIVAL
    c) OMB CAPITOL CHALLENGE UPDATE 
    d) INTERIM CONTROL BY-LAW
3) INTERESTING COMMUNICATION FROM GAVIN ANDERSON
4) KINGSTON OUTDOOR ADVENTURE CLUB
5) PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT STRATEGY
6) NO THIRD CROSSING UPDATES
7) WELLINGTON STREET EXTENSION ISSUES
 
1) PARKING STUFF
City staff have prepared a summary of the consultation and comments received from residents and other stakeholders following the January meeting regarding the on-street parking program in the Inner Harbour neighbourhood.  Primary themes were:
– the need for and goals of the program
– requirements and costs of residential parking permits
-impact of residential permit fees on low income residents
-impact of time of day restrictions on volunteers and volunteer organizations
– desire for an on-street parking option to be available for residents who have no parking options or live on streets with restrictions
 
The summary can be accessed on the City’s website at the following link: https://www.cityofkingston.ca/documents/10180/16225/Inner+Harbour+-+Consultation+Summary/ad8c794d-4ad2-4b1c-8de0-9b629c1b6e97
 
Staff have considered these comments, completed a review of the permits fees, and explored best practices in other municipalities to refine the program recommendations that will be made to Council. 
 
A staff report on this project is expected to go to a meeting of the City’s Environment, Infrastructure, and Transportation Policies Committee (EITP) on April 11th.  The report will include the recommended changes that were presented at the January 11th meeting  with an updated recommendation on the pricing of the residential permit.  The update recommends that Council reduce the existing $30/month residential parking permit fee to $25/month and introduce a $12/month residential parking permit fee for those residents that do not have a driveway or on-site parking.  This new $12 option is intended to further recognize that an affordable parking option for residents that do not have any parking, especially those that are low income, is an important aspect of the program.
 
More information about the general on-street parking program along with supporting information for the Inner Harbour (Area C) neighbourhood can be found at the project website at the following link: On-Street Parking Program – City of Kingston.
 Contact: Ian Semple – isemple@cityofkingston.ca

2) FRONTENAC HERITAGE FOUNDATION EVENTS AND CONCERNS:
As many of the concerns of the Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour are also those of the Frontenac Heritage Foundation, I have borrowed heavily from their most recent update.
Do consider joining this great group.  Membership details below.

a) ASK AN EXPERT!
What? Addressing questions of heritage building and property maintenance. 
Panel members include Mac Gervan and Bruce Downey so far.
Where? Tuesday March 21, RCHA, 2nd floor, 193 Ontario Street
When? 7:30 p.m.

b) DRY STONE WALL FESTIVAL, SEPTEMBER IN BARRIEFIELD
Coming up in September 2017, the Frontenac Heritage Foundation in partnership with Dry Stone Canada will hold a Dry Stone Wall Festival in Barriefield. Dry Stone Canada has held successful festivals across the region for several years now, including Alton (2013 & 2014) Amherst Island, 2015, and Perth, 2016. They hope to get funding for a children’s workshop.  For those of you with children or grandchildren, it will be an unforgettable experience! Adults interested in dry stone wall construction will also be able to take a workshop.  Mark the dates on your calendar – September 30 – October 1. More anon…

c) UPDATE ON CAPITOL PROJECT OMB APPEAL
Many people came to Council Chambers on February 27 for the pre-hearing conference, and indicated that they want to take part as participants, so there is quite a lengthy list. (Participants are allowed to either make their own statement or join with others to do so.)  Several people were not able to be in attendance and they made arrangements in advance to have their views considered. The OMB Chair noted the significant level of public interest in this matter.
 
The next step is to have a second pre-hearing and this is now scheduled for May 23rd. By that time, the issues list will need to be finalized, and in addition, our expert witness list will need to be finalized too. In addition, the lawyer for IN8 announced that he would oppose incorporation of the other three appellants, so motions will be heard in May regarding that matter. When the lawyer for IN8 asked to have a hearing date set, the Board Chair said he would not agree to that until the 2nd pre-hearing on May 23. The OMB Chair indicated that we are probably looking at a hearing at the end of 2017 or early in 2018, and ten days in length.
 
In terms of mediation, the Board Chair said that there has been a staff change at the OMB, and so there is not as much flexibility as usual in terms of providing for OMB assistance in mediating these conflicts. His comment is ‘the sooner the better’.  However, the developer indicated to the press that day that he is not prepared to reduce the height of the building.
 
If you wish to make a financial contribution to this cause, the FHF can provide a tax receipt. Their charitable status will not be threatened if they issue tax receipts, and as noted in previous messages, any amount would be gratefully accepted. 
 
d) INTERIM CONTROL BY-LAW
A lot of effort is going into reviewing a proposal for an Interim Control By-law which may apply to three districts: Sydenham, Williamsville and Portsmouth.  In essence, the proposed by-law would limit construction in these three districts for a year to allow Staff and Council to come up with reasonable neighbourhood-friendly updates to the 40 year old existing by-laws. Decisions made here may well have bearing on future Inner Harbour development. Contact: Laura Knap – laura.knap@gmail.com 
https://www.cityofkingston.ca/city-hall/get-involved/interim-control-bylaw

e) REDEVELOPMENT OF KINGSTON PEN AND PORTSMOUTH OLYMPIC HARBOUR 
Amongst the key proposals for the Emerging Vision are:  removal of the Portsmouth Olympic Harbour building, permissions for a LOT of residential development, allowing the demolition of a portion of the Kingston Penitentiary, and so on, all over forty years.
 https://www.cityofkingston.ca/apps/councilpriorities/penitentiary.html
https://www.cityofkingston.ca/city-hall/projects-construction/kingston-pen/consultation
For more recent information contact Shirley Bailey – shirleyb123@gmail.com

f)  OUTER STATION  As for the issue of removing the passenger station from the old Grand and Trunk Railway Station at 810 Montreal (known as the Outer Station) to the Woolen Mill, a letter was sent from the Frontenac Heritage Foundation to support keeping the original train station in place. Other similar letters were submitted by community members.   We await the results.
 
g) PRIVATE MEMBER’S HERITAGE BILL – Bill C-323 This is a Private Member’s Bill proposing to amend the Income Tax Act, which will give a 20% tax deduction to owners of specifically designated heritage buildings. Other organizations across Canada are promoting this new legislation.  It would be a great way to celebrate Canada’s 150thbirthday by helping to protect heritage buildings everywhere. If you have friends or relative in other provinces, please pass the word.  On March 7, Council voted unanimously for a motion submitted by Councillors Laura Turner and JeffMcLaren  to send a letter of support from the City of Kingston.
 
h) FRONTENAC HERITAGE FOUNDATION MEMBERSHIP
The FHF board has set up a committee to review communications for the FHF, because clearly, it is important to raise consciousness about the value of heritage in the area. If you have thoughts on this, please let them know.  Membership $45.  Contact Shirley Bailey: 343-363-1901 or shirleyb123@gmail.com

3) INTERESTING COMMUNICATION FROM GAVIN ANDERSON
“It is a source of pride for many Canadians that we always do well in the surveys that rank countries on various quality of life indicators. US News and World Report has just released its 2017 rankings and Canada is once again number two, just behind Switzerland. Digging a bit deeper into the rankings, however, reveals a discouraging assessment. Canada’s overall score of 9.7 out of 10 is pulled down by a score of only 2.5 on the Heritage indicator. That puts us in 41st place in that category and is a reflection of a shameful indifference to our own history. We see evidence of that in Kingston with proposals to build condo towers in the downtown core, further despoil our waterfront, and tear down and move the outer station. All the parades and ceremonies celebrating Canada’s sesquicentennial are fine, but if Kingston residents really want to do something to commemorate our 150th birthday we should redouble our efforts to stop the downtown condo towers, protect Doug Fluhrer Park, stop the unnecessary third crossing, and preserve and protect the outer station in place. ”

4) KINGSTON OUTDOOR ADVENTURE CLUB

For those of you who haven’t yet heard about it, the Kingston Outdoor Adventure Club is a truly amazing club – a great addition to Kingston.  Find it on Facebook and sign up to receive e-mail postings of events or contact Chrystal directly at  kayakchk@gmail.com.  The club boasts 1100 members from Kingston, Toronto, Montreal and New York and all places in between and organizes several events each week in all seasons.  Based in the Woolen Mill, lead organizer Chrystal Wilson and her cohorts organize a myriad of meet-ups including hiking, skiing, sailing, cycling, socializing, paddling etc. etc. etc.  A great way to meet some new friends. No cost to join!  All welcome!  Something for everyone  Here is a recent sample event: 
“We’ll meet at Marshlands Conservation Area (http://crca.ca/conservation-lands/conservation-areas/marshlands-conservation-area/) off Front Road (1214 Trailhead Place for GPS), walk through the conservation area, through the Via Rail station, to Tim Horton’s at Princess & Sydenham.  
We’ll fuel up with drinks and snacks and then walk back. 
Total distance walked will be just over 10km.
For those only wanting to walk 5 kilometres, let me know.  
You can park your car at Tim Horton’s and I can shuttle you to the trail head.
What to Bring: 
– headlamp with red light.  
– hiking poles (not necessary, but good if you’re worried about slipping)  
– waterproof hiking boots  
– weather appropriate layers  
– snacks  
– 1 litres of water  
– personal first aid kit  
– $2 contribution to Insurance Fund
Kids and dogs are welcome as long as they can keep up and dog owners obey the rules of the conservation area.
As with all events, you will be required to sign our liability waiver. Please read it ahead of time: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1y1icJ4ObaxKYJY2-srwtXd8X5iB3dhn2fP9CeOXRZPo/pub
Our goal is to develop an engagement processes that will be clear, fair and collaborative as we develop plans, policies and positions on issues facing our community.
5) PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT STRATEGY
The city wants your input about frustrations you may have felt trying to access information or get your message across. Do have a look at the survey and go the the public workshop, Wed. March 8 Public Engagement Strategy is being considered and comments are open for that until March 10th
https://www.surveymonkey.com/ r/7JCT5P5
OPEN HOUSE: Wednesday, March 8th, 4-7 p.m, Portsmouth Olympic Harbour, 53 Yonge Street. 
 
6) NO THIRD CROSSING UPDATES
As we have mentioned previously, the city continues to market the third crossing as if it is utterly essential to Kingston’s wellbeing.  For a project of this magnitude, this lack of debate is a serious shortcoming.  Here is a quote from the group:
 
“The ‘nothirdcrossing’ citizens’ group was formed specifically in an attempt to address this. For the past year the group has studied published City reports and consultants’ findings in detail. Uncovering anomalies and questionable assumptions, it is with a sense of growing alarm that we perceive Council moving towards a vote this spring with so many substantive questions unanswered.
 
The ‘nothirdcrossing’ group grew from a small core of residents a year ago to over 300 city-wide supporters today, and is still growing.
 
‘nothirdcrossing’ does not oppose changes or improvements to our city environment. Indeed, we are all for resolving challenges and moving forward. However, the group firmly believes in a sustainable Kingston living within its means.
 
A Third Crossing does not fulfil this category. Long embedded in the consciousness of city planners and those living east of the Cataraqui, a Third Crossing has taken on its own aura of necessity. Considering the environmental, social and fiscal challenges we face in today’s world, the desire to fulfil this perceived need can no longer be taken for granted. We hope that we can cast a Third Crossing in a more realistic light, one which clearly shows this project is long past its sell-by date.”

Do have a look at nothirdcrossing.ca and decide for yourself.
Contact? Derek Complin 613-547-9595, www.nothirdcrowssingca
FB No Third Crossing, Kingston Ontario,
twitter: @no3crossingYGK

7) CONTINUING WELLINGTON STREET EXTENSION ISSUES
At the March 7 Council meeting, a buried item included mention of a segment of the Bailey Broom Factory property that was to be sectioned off for the proposed Wellington St. Extension.  We are grateful to Councillor Rob Hutchison for being on top of this.  The item was deferred until the next Council meeting.

Happy International Women’s Day.  Pussy hats in order.
Cheers,
Mary