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April Newsletter 2017

  • 1) Engage for Change – Indigenous Outreach – March – Sept.
  • 2) Heritage Issues:  The Good and the Bad – Conflicting Perspectives of City and Feds
  • 3) Third Crossing Meetings: April 7 and 24
  • 4) Commuter Challenge + Official Opening of the K&P Trail to Kingston’s downtown
  • 5) Belated Congrats to Barriefield on Heritage Award
  • 6) Interesting Climate Change Meeting: March 28
  • 7) Walk and Roll: Kingston’s Active Transportation Master Plan
  • 8) Great Interview with Janette Sadik-Khan who transformed NYC into a cycling friendly city
  • 9) Public Participation in Kingston’s Planning Process –  April 3
  • 10) Penitentiary Visioning Concerns – CORK, St. Lawrence II and Waterfront
  • 11) History Talk: Indigenous vs. Establishment in Kingston, 1783 – March 25
  • 12) Seventh Generation Coalition: Cleaning up Belle Island – April 2
  • 13) Bricks in 19th c Architecture in the Kingston Area – April 20
  • 14) Hot off the press position statement by Karen Pagratis -Countryside Council Candidate

1) Engage for Change:

The multi-faceted Engage for Change project seeks to re-frame the relationship between Indigenous/First Peoples and non-Indigenous people in Kingston – especially as it relates to history, knowledge and culture. Its ultimate goal is to develop a City of Kingston relationship protocol to be adopted by City Council.
Running from September 2016 to June 2018, Engage for Change aims to:

  1. Create opportunities to recognize and promote the significant role of First Peoples in history and in contemporary times.
  2. Increase support for traditional knowledge and practices through City policies and procedures and to provide opportunities to integrate traditional and contemporary culture, identity and language into cultural and community-based programming.
  3. Increase collaboration between First Peoples and non-Indigenous people that results in an appreciation and celebration of an inclusive Canadian identity.
Engagement opportunities will focus on learning through inclusive dialogue, celebration and performance. Most of the engagements will take place during a series of community-wide talking circles and a curricular school project.
Engage for Change activities
Ten Community Talking Circles, facilitated by Three Things Consulting Inc. and co-designed with community partners and indigenous leaders, will openly discuss the theme of reconciliation. The intent is to increase our overall cultural competence around indigenous issues, building on what residents know, how residents feel and how well residents put this knowledge into practice. These community partners are hosting Talking Circles. Contact them directly if you are interested in participating.

Nine classes of grade 7 and 8 students across Limestone District School Board will be engaging in an inquiry-based learning program focused on reconciliation. They will look at: equity vs. equality, UN Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the Canadian Charter of Rights & Freedoms, Residential Schooling. They will enjoy guest engagements and dialogue with local First Peoples on their culture, history and hopes for the future.
The Grand Theatre will host Kaha:wi Dance Theatre’s The Honouring on March 29thand Tanya Tagaq – Nanook of the North on May 3rd
Kingston’s Engage for Change project  is rooted in the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, and guided by recommendations contained in the Truth and Reconciliation Findings and Call to Action
It has been made possible in part by the Government of Canada.

2) Heritage issues:

The  Good and the Bad – Conflicting Perspectives of City and Feds.
First, the Good News:

MP Mark Gerretsen’s wonderful speech in support of Bill C-323 that proposes a modest 20% tax credit for rehabilitation work done on designated historic buildings and a three-year accelerated write-off period for spending on these buildings.  This would give interested parties the incentive to take on these projects.  Mention is made of the Outer Station, the Kingston Penitentiary and the lighthouse on Simcoe Island as examples.  Well done Mark!  The full speech is included at the end of this update. 
Second, the bad news – via the Frontenac Heritage Foundation:
City Council just voted to remove $99,000 from the Heritage Capital Envelope in order to put architectural lighting on City Hall, and in Market Square and on the fountain. More of the same….that’s funding for a heritage district study, or some updated designation by-laws or a staff person….very sad.
And this from Konstantinos Callas Panageotopoulos on the Vision for Kingston Facebook page:  
“The Disneyfication of one of the most recognized cultural heritage sites in Kingston is a a backdrop for a light show is nothing more than a trivial entertainment for tourists.
If council truly wanted to create a sesquicentennial legacy, they might want to question why the city has never been recognized as a leader in heritage conservation. In particular, why has the City of Kingston not been awarded the Prince of Wales Prize for Municipal Heritage Leadership? Built cultural colossal waste of money. Transforming City Hall, market square and the centennial fountain into heritage, heritage landscapes like the views of City Hall or the Olympic Harbour are our greatest economic development asset in the tourism realm. Not disneyfied light shows.”

3) Third Crossing Meetings

What: Phases 2 and 3 of the proposed Third Crossing
Who: Mark van Buren, Director of Transportation, City of Kingston

First meeting:
Where: Seniors’ Centre,  56 Francis St, Kingston, ON, K7M 1L7, Phone: (613) 548-7810
When: Friday, April 7, 2017, 11:00 am
NOTE:  This event is free.  Non-members welcome.

Second meeting:
Where: To be announced
When:  Monday, April 24, 2017, 7 pm
Contact: Holly Wilson – or M ary Farrar –

4) Commuter Challenge

& Official Opening of the K&P Trail to Kingston’s Downtown

This year’s Commuter Challenge is  from Sun, June 4 – Sat, June 10  More anon…

But do set aside Friday, June 9 as a fun morning ride from Binnington Court to the Roll-In Breakfast at Market Square on the new K&P Trail.  We are hoping to have lots of keen new cycle commuters from South Frontenac and Countryside!

Also thanks so much to Chrystal Wilson of the Kingston Outdoor Adventure Club who is working with Sue Hitchcock and others in the city to make the official opening of the K&P Trail on Sat. June 10 a huge success.  Stay tuned.

5) Belated Congrats to Barriefield on Heritage Award     
Barriefield Village Honoured with Lieutenant Governor Heritage Award for Excellence in Conservation on Feb. 17, for its celebrations of the 200th anniversary of Barriefield. 
The Hon. Elizabeth Dowdeswell, Lieutenant Governor of Ontario, presented the award to Barb Carr, Chair of the Barriefield 200th Anniversary Committee, and Christine Sypnowich, President of the BVA, at a ceremony at the Legislative Building, Queen’s Park, in Toronto.
The annual Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Awards recognize exceptional contributions to cultural and natural heritage conservation, environmental sustainability and biodiversity.  Established in 2007, the Lieutenant Governor’s Ontario Heritage Awards are annual juried awards administered by the Ontario Heritage Trust to recognize exceptional achievements in heritage conservation.

There were only 5 winners in the Excellence in Conservation category from across Ontario, and the BVA were the only volunteer group among them.  The citation for the award reads:
“Presented to the Barriefield Village Association for 200th anniversary of Barriefield interpretive and commemorative activities (Kingston). Barriefield, a designated Heritage Conservation District in the City of Kingston, celebrated its 200th anniversary in 2014.
Through the efforts of a volunteer committee, members of the Barriefield Village Association devoted countless hours planning and carrying out events for the anniversary.
The heritage of the village was the main focal point for the interpretive and commemorative activities, which included a documentary film, guided walking tours, the publication of the book Barriefield: Two Centuries of Village Life, a museum exhibit and a successful festival that saw over 2,000 attendees.
‘We are so pleased to be recognized for all our efforts,’ said Barb Carr, Chair of the Anniversary Committee.  ‘It was quite a thrill to have the plaque presented to us by the Lieutenant Governor in the beautiful hall of the Legislative Building.’ 

‘This is a tremendous honour for the village, which shows just how important is Barriefield’s heritage, and how committed we villagers are to protecting it,’ said Christine Sypnowich, President of the BVA.
More info? Barb Carr
Christine Sypnowich

6) Interesting Climate Change Meeting

Talk Title: Warning labels on gas pumps will help us fight climate change. This one action could breathe much needed new life into Kingston’s stated goal “To Be Canada’s Most Sustainable City”.  The Psychology, Economics, and Law behind his idea to have governments require climate change information labels on gas pumps. 

Who? Rob Shirkey, Toronto-based lawyer, TEDx speaker, and founder of environmental non-profit Our Horizon,

Where?  Kingston Youth Unlimited Hall, 255 Kingscourt Ave., Kingston

When? Mar 28, 6:30pm Mingle, Coffee and Snacks,  7pm-8:pm  Talk and Discussion
Read more here:

Talk Series Sponsor: Carbon Action Task Force, Carbonleader Certification Program

Contact: David Knowles – “One of the Ones”

7) Walk and Roll: Kingston’s Active Transportation Master Plan

The aim is to reach a target of 20 percent active transportation mode share for peak travel times by 2034 as directed by Council.
Active transportation refers to any human powered mode of travel including walking, cycling, in-line skating, skateboarding, running and getting around by wheelchair. 

By reducing the reliance on automobiles for work, errands or recreation, active transportation improves the sustainability of the community.  Walking and cycling, using other non-motorized  modes of travel and moving with mobility devices all  contribute to a more livable, socially inclusive and healthy community as well as stimulating the city’s tourism industry. Active transportation requires both expanding travel choices and encouraging people to change their habits to walk and cycle more.

Walk’n’ Roll Kingston will mean more sidewalks and walkways, more bicycle facilities, more walk connections to transit and recreational trails. Objectives include:

  • -A comprehensive network
  • -Corridors that encourage the use of walking and cycling
  • -Networks that integrate walking and cycling with transit and carpooling
  • -Facilities that will encourage recreational trips and tourism

More than 300 people participated in the Walk ‘n’ Roll Active Transportation Master Plan survey held this past fall. Here are a few  highlights of  those who completed the survey:

  • – 54 per cent live less than 5 km from work or school and 24 per cent live within 2 km.
  • – 41 per cent most often drive alone to get where they are going while 23 per cent walk and 19 per cent cycle.
  • – Weather, busy roads with no crosswalk/traffic signals and road maintenance were cited as the top barriers to walking, cycling and wheeling.
  • – 82 per cent of walkers and 38 per cent of cyclists indicated they felt safe
  • – 95 per cent  of walkers indicated better maintenance of sidewalks/pathways/trails  would encourage them to walk more often
  • – 94 per cent of cyclists indicated that more routes for cycling, such as bike lanes or trails, would encourage them to cycle more often.

Infographic summary of the Walk ‘n’ Roll results and/or full form:

Other Links?    Ontario Traffic Manual, Book 18,  Ontario Cycling Strategy, Ontario Cycling Action Plan.0, Cycling Safety Guide,  Ontario Bikeway Design Guidelines, City of Kingston Cycling information1


Consultant: MMM Group (A WSP Company) and sub consultants.
Sub consultants: Cumming + Company – Public and Stakeholder Consultation; Mobycon – Active Transportation Visioning.
Exploratory Walking and Cycling Tours have informed this process.  The goal is a target of 20% cycling and walking commuters by 2034.

On November 28, 2016, a 17-km bike tour was completed beginning and ending at Market Square. The tour included the LaSalle Causeway, Wellington Street north to Cataraqui Street, and other busy and quiet streets with and without various kinds of cycling infrastructure. Participants then discussed: gaps in the network including bike lanes, signage, and intersection challenges; Causeway concerns; conditions of bike lanes; and the need for signed bicycle commuter routes including quiet roads. Participants also noted that of the 12 TAG riders, only one was a woman and that the prevalence of female compared with male cyclists in a city indicates how bicycle-friendly, or not, the community is. Another observation made on the tour were transitions between travel lanes, sidewalks, and driveways which affects the mobility of pedestrians, cyclists, and motorists.

On February 23, 2017, a walking tour was completed by TAG. Kingston Transit was used to travel between the tour locations. The tour started at Springer Market Square, and followed a loop around downtown and hitting locations that showcase different pedestrian infrastructure, including the new K&P Trail along the Inner Harbour, the new pedestrian crossing on Rideau St. and the Brock St. traffic calming speed humps at the Hotel Dieu Hospital. The second leg of the tour followed a loop that started at the new Palace Rd. Express Bus stop, crossing Sir John A. MacDonald Boulevard and then along some of the residential streets/pathways built in the 1960s in Calvin Park, and finished up at the Calvin Park Library for a group discussion.

8) Great Interview with Janette Sadik-Khan

…who transformed NYC into a cycling friendly city


Janette Sadik-Kahn, was Transportation Commissioner in NYC and spearheaded cycling in the downtown.  Amazing work!  Her excellent book is entitled “Street Fight”.

9) Public Participation in Kingston’s Planning Process

The City of Kingston will host focus groups to gather input on public participation in the planning process.
“We know that there is a great deal of interest in the planning process, which is admittedly complex and subject to a lot of regulation. We want to know how we can best clarify that process and invite the public into it in a meaningful way,” says Paige Agnew, director of planning, building and licensing. The focus-group input – and a review of the best practices in other municipalities in Ontario – will be used to develop recommendations to update processes.
Two focus groups to choose from – both to be held on Monday, April 3 in the second floor boardroom of 1211 John Counter Blvd.:

Registration required through
In addition there is a focus group scheduled to receive input from developers.
The planning process considers applications made by residents and developers for proposed buildings, renovations and developments. City staff reviews the applications and, depending on their scope and complexity, either recommends the applications or requires changes so that projects comply with municipal regulations.  Some applicants request amendments to zoning bylaws and/or the Official Plan and their proposals require further consideration by the planning committee and City council.
The location and status of all planning applications submitted to the City can be viewed at (development and services hub) at any time.
More info?

10) Recent Penitentiary Visioning Concerns

Three penitentiary concerns that have been expressed by members include;

  • a) worries from sailors about docking for CORK, Kingston’s renowned summer sailing event,
  • b) worries from educators about docking space for the St. Lawrence II, Kingston’s tall ship, an d
  • c) the boring nature of the tour run by ex-guards.  It could be a much richer cultural experience if the focus was on the penitentiary’s fascinating history with great storytelling by some of Kingston’s wonderful actors.  The prison museum in Dublin is a magnificent example of what can be done.

Did you know, for example, that women and children prisoners had to take a vow of silence?
Contact:  Julie Salter-Keane at
The following was submitted by Bruce Bursey who is concerned ” that the Hatter’s Bay Group Vision seems to remove much of the earliest and oldest pen buildings and walls and reconfigures the look and feel of the entire site.  Some might suggest it will be changed in such a way as to seriously reduce the heritage and tourist experience.  Also it seems to not be in step with the recent single vision from the Public Visioning exercise.  This vision created a separate zone in the north that is envisioned to protect the heritage aspects for maximum tourist opportunity and it locates a new development to the south and outside the existing walls.

It is also not clear in the Hatter’s Bay Group proposal who would own the land at the water’s edge.  There is a possible concern that the waterfront path will not be owned by the city, but rather will be privately owned, with a negotiated use for public access and pathways, as part of the Official Plan development approvals – as exists with the Commodore Cove townhouse condos where the condo owns the land but the public can use the pathways.”
Bruce is concerned about the city having to negotiate with a developer for public waterfront access.

11) Inner Harbour History Talk: Indigenous vs. Establishment, 1783

What: “How the Deal Went Down: Indigenous People and the Establishment of Kingston, 1783

Where: St Paul’s Anglican Church Hall, Queen @Montreal Sts.

Who: Dr. Laura Murray speaking at a United Empire Loyalists Association of Canada, Kingston & District Branch meeting.

When: Saturday, March 25, 2017: 1 pm.

NOTE: The meeting will be preceded by a soup and sandwich lunch starting at noon.  $3.50 for those not contributing sandwiches or squares.  Hall open from 11:30 am for mingling and making new friends.

Visitors welcome.  More info?

12) Hot off the press

Position statement by Karen Pagratis -Countryside Council Candidate

We welcome submissions from any candidate running for Council in Countryside if they address issues relevant to the Inner Harbour.  We feel Ms. Pagratis’s  comments are relevant as her ideas could dramatically reduce traffic in the Inner Harbour, benefitting the downtown. Here is her submission:
Transportation in the North End

There is real inequity facing those of us dependent upon public transportation in this city.  Outside the downtown core, routes are thin and far between and once you reach Countryside District there are no buses at all!

“Park and Ride” locations are often in the less accessible edges of the city, encouraging a lot of drivers to just continue driving downtown and pay for expensive parking rather than search out cheaper park and ride alternatives.

Is this a sustainable model?  Do we want to create more streets and traffic, crowding out the view of our beautiful rivers and creating parking lots out of the few natural parks we currently enjoy? Do Countryside residents who work in KIngston  want to continue paying for expensive downtown parking?

We need a “Park and Ride” at Division and 401 and all the other major arteries heading north into Countryside where parking is free and transit access to the downtown is easy and cheap.  In addition, a “Park and Ride” along Hwy 2 would help serve the underserviced East side.
We know Kingston Transit is trying and they have made some real improvements both in Express Service and in providing transit free for children.  We applaud them for that, but let’s keep on trying.  Kingston residents don’t just live and work on express routes. We’re spaced throughout our fair city and Countryside residents should have access too!  It’s only fair.  We pay for it in our taxes. 
Karen Pagratis
Countryside Resident, Candidate for Kingston City Council

13) Seventh Generation Coalition 

Clean-up of Belle Island

Check out their Facebook page for further details.  Jeff Travis Canadien who was organizing this is currently in hospital after being struck by a car so we are not absolutely sure if this is still a go. 

Updates will be posted on the Facebook page.  It was scheduled for April 2.

14) Bricks in 19c Architecture in the Kingston area.

What: “Let us make bricks.. and let us build ourselves a city: Bricks in 19th Century Architecture of the Kingston Area”  Title of a new book and the title of this talk.   The subject of brick has been, on the whole, ignored in Kingston publications and yet we are more likely to be living or shopping in a brick building than in a stone one.

Who: Jennifer McKendry, Architectural Historian,  sponsored by the Kingston’s Heritage Resource Centre.

When: Thursday, April 20, 10 am

Where: Kingston City Hall

All welcome.  Free of charge.

Please register: ).