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October Update 2023

Dear Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour,
So sorry I haven’t included a picture. 
Somehow I messed up, deleted the picture box by mistake, and can’t figure out how to fix it. 
Will be more careful next month. 
In the meantime, lots of interesting stuff happening.LOCAL STUFF
1. Zombie Re-opening of Wellington St. Extension?
2. New Advocacy Group Formed to Examine Issues re Two Proposed Downtown High Rises.
3. Fun Family Hallowe’en Event in Park, Sat, Oct 28 with Oceans Wise and Swim, Drink, Fish
4. Love is in the Air
5. Halloween in McBurney Park
6. Mayor’s Task Force on Housing & Kerry Hill’s Important Observations
7. No Clearcut’s Exciting Semi-formal Gala Fund-raising Event with David Suzuki, Nov 3
8. Repairs to Belle Park
9. Utilities Kingston’s Phone Survey
10. Call for Interested Citizens to join City Committees
11. Halloween at the Museum of Health Care
12. Volunteering with Little Forests Kingston?
13. Parks Canada’s Schedule for Repairs to the Causeway
14. Historians Race to find Great Lakes Shipwrecks before Quagga Mussels Destroy the Sites
15. Inside the Battle to pPeserve the Underwater Ghosts of Ontario’s Great Lakes
16. Adding Spider DNA to Silkworms Creates Silk Stronger than Kevlar
17. Jellyfish Surprise Scientists by Learning Without a Brain
1. Zombie Re-opening of Wellington St. Extension?
As we all know, the huge number of cars on both Montreal St. and Division St. during rush hour is problematic.  This will only be made worse with the many proposed developments in the Inner Harbour and throughout North King’s Town – let alone the rest of the city.

1.1 Research has shown, consistently and repeatedly, that building more roads simply leads to more cars.
1.2 Opening up the Wellington St. Extension through Doug Fluhrer Park would reduce the greenspace essential for the thousands of new residents expected – and their hundreds of dogs.
1.3 This major arterial would be disastrous for the hundreds of turtles that call the area home.  It would also negatively affect many other species.
1.4 Kingston taxpayers are subsidizing residents of South Frontenac who pay less tax where they live but work in and use Kingston facilities.
1.5 Building Park ‘n Rides costs much less than building major arterials.
1.6 Given the Climate Crisis, Planning should be concerned with reducing/eliminating cars, not creating more roads.
NOTE: I have been assured that the southern section of the WSE is not on the table but clearly there will be massive pressure given the huge amount of development being proposed.
Here is what we have received via correspondence from Niall Oddie, City Planner, regarding the North King’s Town Secondary Plan Working Group that has a Transportation component.
“It was nice to see some of you at the Open House and Workshop events that were held in June. We recently updated the Get Involved Kingston project page with ‘what we heard’ engagement summaries from the Open Houses / Workshop, online survey and interviews with members of the development community and interested property owners. We received a lot of interesting feedback from a variety of perspectives and have been busy updating the project materials to reflect this information.  With several areas of the project moving forward, we hope to schedule a meeting with the Group towards the end of November to discuss new materials, such as:Revisions to Land Use, Intensification Area and Building Height maps to incorporate comments received from the above noted engagements;Brief discussion on current development applications within NKT and how they relate to Intensification AreasTransportation Plan updates, including overview of revised modelling, cycling comfort analysis, collision data analysis, sidewalk gap analysis, evaluation criteria  and draft future connections mapOverview and sample draft Secondary Plan policies to describe approach to cultural heritage conservation, environmental protection, intensification area development, and range of housing options.”And “The transportation networks within North King’s Town are being assessed by the Transportation Plan that forms part of the North King’s Town Secondary Plan, including whether there is a need to construct the Wellington Street Extension. A ‘Strategic Corridor Analysis’ was completed in 2019 to model the impacts of anticipated growth on the transportation network. The results from this analysis determined that the southern portion of the Wellington Street Extension (Rideau Street to Bay Street) was not required but that the northern portion of the Wellington Street Extension (Rideau Street to John Counter Boulevard) did provide benefit to the existing road network and that additional modelling was required for the northern portion. Based on the 2019 report, Council determined that the southern portion of the Wellington Street Extension was not required and removed the project from the Development Charges By-Law. As part of the current Secondary Plan work, the ‘Strategic Corridor Analysis’ is being updated to reflect current growth assumptions and will proceed with micro-simulation modelling to provide more detailed requirements of the northern portion. The southern portion of the Wellington Street Extension is no longer being considered for a future roadway, but is being evaluated as a potential future active transportation corridor to facilitate additional and more direct walking and cycling routes. 
There are no details on design or construction timing for the Wellington Street Extension lands available at this point. The North King’s Town Transportation Plan is intended to function as Phase 1 and 2 of the Environmental Assessment (EA) process to identify preferred network alternatives for the area, however additional design work for individual projects would be required as part of the remaining EA phases.”
And this from Ian Semple, Director of Planning:
The southern portion of the Wellington Street Extension is not being considered for a future roadway but is being evaluated as a potential active transportation corridor to facilitate additional and more direct walking and cycling routes. This would be consistent with the conclusions from the 2019 work and is how the NKT transportation study is proceeding. If anything changes with this approach that the City is taking I’m certain we would have a lot of public discussion and engagement on it.”
NOTE: Despite these reassurances we feel it is important to let you know that we continue to be vigilant as we have no doubt that pressures will mount.

Contacts: Niall Oddie, Senior Planner, City of Kingston –, and Sukriti Agarwal,, and Ian Semple, Director: Transportation and Transit –

2. New Advocacy Group Formed to Examine Issues re Two Proposed Downtown High Rises.
 At a meeting on Oct 12, a new group was formed under the leadership of Bob MacInnes. They will meet with city staff and local councillors to determine best ways forward on a number of issues.

3. Fun Family Hallowe’en Event Sat, Oct 28 with Oceans Wise and Swim, Drink, Fish
What: Trick or Trash Shoreline Clean-Up – followed by Family Fun. Halloween costumes are welcome and after the cleanup there will be music, treats and fun family activities including spray painting a section of the Art Wall.
Who: Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour in partnership with Oceans Wise conservation group ( and Swim, Drink, Fish ( &
Where: Meeting in Doug Fluhrer Park with clean-up on the trail from River Street to Belle Park
More Info:
Link to Register at Eventbrite Free Event: Trick or Trash Shoreline Cleanup Tickets, Sat, Oct 28, 2023 at 1:30 PM | Eventbrite

4. Love is in the Air
The fall issue of The Skeleton Press, “Neighbourhood Love”, will hit the streets during the week of Oct 16. Don’t miss out!
Distribution sites include: Novel Idea (156 Princess St.) The Elm Café (303 Montreal St.), Kingston Community House (99 York), Something Else Records (207 Wellington St.) and Skeleton Park neighbourhood Little Libraries.

5. Halloween in McBurney Park
All witches, werewolves, goblins and ghouls are invited to congregate in the park for a New Orleans style parade with the Urban Science Brass Band.
McBurney Park 5pm Tuesday October 31st.
Keep and eye open in our social media for more details! 

6. Mayor’s Comments on Housing and Kerry Hills’s Important Observations
“It’s time Kingston—City Council has set its new goals for this term and now we’re ready to put a plan in place. At a special meeting this Tuesday, I’ll be sitting down with City Council to approve a bold and ambitious plan geared toward specific and concrete actions to move our community forward. This plan will help bring growth and renewal to many different parts of our city. For example, here in Portsmouth Village, we will launch a visioning exercise for a revitalization of Portsmouth Olympic Harbour, explore new tourism and film opportunities at Kingston Pen and facilitate the redevelopment of the former Prison for Women property into new housing.To support housing affordability across the city, we are aiming to build 4800 new housing unitsover the next four years, including 480 affordable and supportive housing solutions. We’re exploring opportunities for inclusionary zoning, promoting mass timber construction and creating a new housing innovation competition to promote new innovative housing solutions. To become leaders in environmental stewardship and climate action, we’re going to accelerate net zero building standards, purchase 18 new electric buses and aggressively expand tree planting throughout the city. We want to build an active and connected community which includes revitalization plans for the Memorial Centre and Centre 70, examining the feasibility of new facilities such as an aquatics centre and health and wellness hub, and investing $35M to repair roads. We are continuing our efforts to recruit new family doctors and health professionals, find ways to support vertical farming and food security programs, and introduce outreach to newcomers and international students all to foster a caring and inclusive community. Finally, we will foster inclusive economic growth through expanded business parks, advancing the new downtown conference centre, redesigning Confederation Park, and exploring new pedestrian spaces in the city core.
All of this is just a preview of more than 150 different initiatives that are a part of the City’s workplan to push Kingston forward in the years to come. Our priorities are designed to help the community build more together, move better together, and grow faster together. Together, we can continue to make Kingston a healthy, happy and vibrant community.
Share your opinion with me on these topics and more by email at mayor@cityofkingston.caAnd this, received from Kerry Hill Oct 13, 2023
The housing target assigned to Kingston for 2031 is 8,000 (see Province’s Bulletin dated October 25, 2022 –  The City of Kingston Report to Council Number 23-063, dated February 21, 2023 contains the City’s Housing Pledge – 8,000.  The City states that If the average number of building permits of around 1,000 units per year continues for the next eight years, it should be able to meet the Province’s Municipal Housing Target of 8,000 new homes by 2031.  In my opinion this is a gross understatement!

My table below lists the current, 2023, developments that are in all the different planning stages on DASH.  Be aware that I may have missed some, so this is the minimum number – 13,578.

Let’s look at these numbers.  Pending and committed residential units proposed through Planning Act applications as of December 31, 2022. 4,371 committed units and 6,959 pending units. These applications could result in 11,330 new homes being added to the Kingston market over time.  These are units that were on DASH in 2022!
37% of the 4,371 committed units have received draft plan of subdivision or zoning by-law amendment approval but haven’t yet proceeded to applications for final plan of subdivision or site plan approval and building permits, resulting in delays before the development eventually comes to market.  This state is in the developers’ hands. 

‘Up-zoning’ or pre-zoning of vacant land (e.g. Woodhaven), the Central Kingston Growth Strategy
and Williamsville Corridor removes zoning by-law amendment as a barrier to the construction of approximately 8,571 additional new homes.

How many units have been put on DASH since December 2022? 
– 749 new units have been permitted to the end of August.

I haven’t yet collected the following numbers so they are not complete – if anyone has these please let us know by reply to all email.
– at least 2,000 units have been approved by the Planning Committee
– XXX units have been approved by Council

More than 99% of all of the above units are ‘market-driven’, i.e. the numbers do not address the request by the Province to provide affordable housing units amongst the mix of new housing.

I think that we need to make certain that our Councillors and the City’s Planning Staff understand the numbers and have our support to have a more nuanced approach to developers’ plans.

Please let me know what you think.

NOTE: To see Kerry’s tables indicating the in-progress Table showing housing units in various planning stages at the city, contact her Kerry Hill –

7. No Clearcut’s Exciting Semi-formal Gala Fund-raising Event with David Suzuki, Nov 3
What: Semi-formal Gala Fund-raising Event with David Suzuki via Zoom.
Event will also include Spencer Evans and Mourning Doves, a silent auction, food, and games.
This is No Clearcut’s major fund-raising event as they prepare their case to save the Tannery forest before the Ontario Land Tribunal.
Who: No Clearcuts Kingston in co-ordination with the enthusiastic young people of Queen’s Backing Action on the Climate Crisis (QBACC) and Kingston Youth Climate Action (KYCA)NOTES:
Why: They must raise another $25,000 to put forward a solid case. As a Party at the Tribunal, they have to hire Expert Witnesses to defend the previous City Council’s vote last September.
Where: Queen’s Historic Grant Hall
Tickets: Tickets are now selling for $55. but will go up to $60 closer to the event. You can buy your tickets through Eventbrite “Stop the Chop, Party Til You Drop”
It would be wonderful if you could join in for what will be a memorable event!

8. Repairs to Belle Park
Received from The Kingstonist, Oct 5 – Jessica Foley 

9. Utilities Kingston’s Phone Survey
Received from the Kingstonist, Oct 3, 2023 – Jessica Foley
At a time when scams and phishing attempts are high, Utilities Kingston is alerting electricity customers they are conducting legitimate phone surveys.According to a release from Utilities Kingston, dated Monday, Oct. 2, 2023, the phone calls, which will come from Innovative Research Group, will start this week and the utility company wants people to know these phone calls and questions are legitimate and authorized.
“We’ve been serving Kingston for more than 150 years and know that what is important to customers changes over time. Being a company that is easy to do business with is our priority. Please share your opinions to help us better understand your needs,” said Kevin McCauley, Director of Telecommunications and Customer Care for Utilities Kingston.
Utilities Kingston has contracted Innovative Research Group, a public opinion research firm, to call some of its customers in central Kingston to ask a few questions about its electrical services. According to the release, when they call, Innovative Research Group will ask to speak to the person who looks after your household’s electrical bill and then proceed with the survey, which takes less than ten minutes. You will not be asked for account, financial, or other personal information, the utility company stated.
Utilities Kingston provided the following details:The survey is voluntary. You are not obligated to participate. The survey is designed to help Utilities Kingston understand customer satisfaction as it relates to services provided by the utility. The survey should take approximately eight minutes.  Customers will be contacted at random.  The telephone number they will be calling from is 613-505-4111. If customers are unavailable when contacted, they will have the opportunity to schedule a call-back time at their convenience.  This is a legitimate research study.According to the release, Utilities Kingston is one of many electric utilities in Ontario now conducting customer satisfaction surveys, as required by the Ontario Energy Board.
“If you receive a call from Innovative Research Group asking you to participate in a survey for Utilities Kingston, please consider participating,” the utility company stated.
Questions or concerns about the survey can be directed to customer service at 613-546-1181, Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

10. Call from City for Interested Citizens to join City Committees CommitteeArts Advisory CommitteeEquity, Diversity & Inclusion Advisory CommitteeFence-ViewersHousing & Homelessness Advisory CommitteeKingston and Area Taxi CommissionKingston Environment Advisory ForumKingston & Frontenac Housing Corporation BoardKingston Heritage Programs CommitteeKingston Heritage Properties CommitteeMunicipal Accessibility Advisory CommitteePlanning Advisory CommitteeRural Advisory Committee11. Halloween at the Museum of Health Care⁠Join the Museum of Health Care and Murney Tower Museum for an all-ages Halloween event…if you dare!⁠
⁠Explore both museums and follow the clues to escapeTo earn your prize, you must be awarded a key at each site. Will you be lucky enough to escape? Or will you be trapped inside like some poor souls from times gone by?⁠
Date: Saturday, October 21, 2023⁠
Locations: Museum of Health Care, 32 George Street and Murney Tower Museum (2 King St West). You can start your quest at either site!
⁠Cost: Admission by donation (free ticket required.) ⁠
Time: Drop in between 3pm-8pm⁠
COSTUMES ENCOURAGED! Volunteering with Little Forests Kingston?If you would like to help with the plantings, here are a few ways you could get involved:

These are people who plant the trees!
Coaches: If you have some planting experience perhaps you would consider being a coach and teaching others how to plant
Site organizers: There are also more organizational aspects to help with (e.g. helping keep the sites running smoothly)Safety foresters: If you have a particular interest in keeping people safe, we are looking for “safety foresters” who are ideally trained in First Aid (but this isn’t a necessary requirement)Site prep: there is still some site prep work to be done so if you’re into carting mulch around in wheelbarrows, raking, weeding, those sorts of things, we have the perfect job for you!The full schedule isn’t yet finalized. We’ll publish updates –, but this is what we’re anticipating:October 10-11: Final site prep at Seniors Centre (date/time to be confirmed)October 14-15 (Saturday and Sunday): Planting at Seniors Centre. Planters / Coaches / Organizers / Safety ForestersOctober 16-17 (Monday and Tuesday): Planting by school classes at Seniors Centre. Coaches / Site Organizers / Safety ForestersOctober 18 (Wednesday): Planting any left-over trees at the Seniors Centre, final clean-up. Planters / Coaches / Site Organizers / Safety ForestersOctober 19-27 (Dates/Times TBD): Planting trees at the Hwy 15 Indigenous Food Sovereignty Garden Little Forest (mostly coaching/mentoring school kids), composting and mulching the Little Forest site at 111 Van Order at the Kingston and Frontenac Housing Corporation inaugural Little Forest site! Coaches / Site Prep / Site Organizers / Safety ForestersAs you can see there is much to be done and we would so appreciate your help. Feel free to pass this on to friends and neighbours who might be interested too! If you’d like to learn more about volunteering, or let us know a particular activity you’d like to get involved in, please contact Chloe at chloe@littleforests.orgFROM FARTHER AFIELD13. Parks Canada re Scheduled work on the LaSalle Causeway
Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC) wishes to provide information regarding the upcoming scheduled works for the Bascule Bridge at the LaSalle Causeway in Kingston, Ontario.
This project will address health and safety risk, as well as operational risks, posed by the current condition of various components of the lift bridge as they are beyond their service lives. Planned work for the bridge includes replacement of the steel deck grating and supporting stringers, rehabilitation of the deteriorated concrete on the counterweight, and strengthening of the supporting steel truss members at the main trunnions.
Work is scheduled to take place during the navigation off-season, from November 1st 2023 to April 30th 2024, and from November 1st 2024 to April 30th 2025. During construction, the following impacts to vehicular, marine, and pedestrian traffic can be expected:Throughout the duration of the construction works, the bridge will be reduced to a single lane of alternating traffic. Vehicular traffic will still be able to access the bridge during these times using alternating lanes.A number of full closures to vehicular traffic will be required at various points in the construction schedule. Full closures will be kept to the minimum extent possible to permit completion of the rehabilitation work and will be scheduled for off-peak hours. Public notices about the closures will be issued in advance and shared through our social media channels.Due to the nature of the work, the bridge will be unable to lift for marine traffic throughout the construction period. The bridge will continue to lift as usual from May 1 to October 31st each year. Pedestrians and cyclists will be able to continue using the bridge via a temporary sidewalk constructed alongside the existing bridge, but periodic delays are still expected.PSPC is committed to ensuring that the LaSalle Causeway remains safe and operational for users. We will continue to engage with stakeholders as the project proceeds. 
The latest information on the project can be found on the PSPC website: LaSalle Causeway: Bascule Bridge rehabilitation – Federal property construction and maintenance projects – Federal properties and buildings – About government – ( . Stakeholders and members of the public may submit their questions/feedback using the email address provided on the webpage, the email address is:

14. Historians race to find Great Lakes shipwrecks before quagga mussels destroy the sites,CP24, September 24, 2023.  The Great Lakes’ frigid fresh water used to keep shipwrecks so well preserved that divers could see dishes in the cupboards.  Downed planes that spent decades underwater were left so pristine they could practically fly again when archaeologists finally discovered them.  Now, an invasive mussel is destroying shipwrecks deep in the depths of the lakes, forcing archeologists and amateur historians into a race against time to find as many sites as they can before the region touching eight U.S. states and the Canadian province of Ontario loses any physical trace of its centuries-long maritime history.

15. Inside the battle to preserve the underwater ghosts of Ontario’s Great Lakes, CBC, October 2, 2023.  Archeologists, historians and divers are trying to digitally capture more than 1,000 shipwrecks at the bottom of the Great Lakes before they become unrecognizable after a combination of invasive mussels and climate change have accelerated their deterioration at an alarming rate.

16Adding Spider DNA to Silkworms Creates Silk Stronger than Kevlar
Received from Freethink, Oct 3, 2023

17. Jellyfish Surprise Scientists by Learning Without a Brain
Received from Freethink, Oct 5, 2023

So that’s it for October,
Happy Halloween,
Mary Farrar,
President, Friends of Kingston Inner Harbour