A New Temporary Home for the Marine Museum – Portsmouth Olympic Harbour

Alexander Henry

On June 29th City Council held a special meeting to discuss the future of the Marine Museum of the Great Lakes, as they face eviction from their current location on August 23rd. At this meeting City Council approved a plan that will see the Marine Museum move into vacant space at Portsmouth Olympic Harbour. Council also supported the movement of the museum’s largest artifact, the retired coastguard ship Alexander Henry, from the dry dock on the waterfront and to the Picton Terminal over the next year.

The Marine Museum’s move to Portsmouth Olympic Harbour provides temporary space to showcase their artifacts over the next two to four years, giving time for the museum to explore opportunities for a new permanent location. Many people have suggested to me that the Marine Museum could fit within the future vision for the Kingston Penitentiary and Portsmouth Olympic Harbour site, and that is something that can certainly be considered within the visioning exercise now underway.

The disposal of the Alexander Henry has proven to be by far the most difficult piece of the puzzle for the Marine Museum’s future. But while the ship is housed at Picton Terminal over the next year, museum and city staff will be able to assess the potential to sink the ship in the coastal waters of Kingston in order to create a new artificial dive reef.

Using the Alexander Henry to create a new dive site would be an exciting tourism opportunity for the city. But it will also come with a large price tag, and so City Council indicated the city would cover half of the cost of disposing of the Alexander Henry, provided the Marine Museum is able to cover the other half through its own fundraising efforts.

I have consistently stated that the city should be there to help the Marine Museum as it transitions to a new chapter, however the city cannot cover all of these costs alone. My challenge to the supporters of the museum and the community as a whole is to embrace this opportunity. We can move forward together as we work to preserve and celebrate our rich history.

Learn more: Third Crossing video

The Third Crossing is the single largest infrastructure project ever considered for Kingston, and so it’s very important to me that all residents in our city have a chance to learn about the details of this project and provide their input. Check out this short video to learn more about the Third Crossing bridge and how it supports our transportation needs now and into the future.

video - Third Crossing

As we move toward getting the Third Crossing to shovel ready status we are working hard to engage all residents on the importance of project. To learn more about the project visit the city website here

I am looking forward to the public open house in September when the draft design concept for the bridge, roadway and landscape will be presented!

From the Mayor’s Chair – June 21

Check out the latest version of From the Mayor’s Chair, where I break down the decisions of Council in 3 minutes.

Highlights from the June 21 Council meeting include discussions on three hot topics; the Kingston airport expansion project, KEDCO Review Committee report and a new model to measure economic impact of residential intensification.

The Council meeting will continue Thursday June 23 at 7pm in Council Chambers to complete the agenda 

Watch the June 21 edition of From the Mayor’s Chair here

From the Mayor's Chair -

For previous From the Mayor’s Chair segments visit the media tab at the top of this website

Key Recommendations from KEDCO Review Committee Report

This week the final report of the KEDCO review committee was released to the public. The report contains a large number of recommendations and proposes some significant changes moving forward. Here’s a brief overview of what the report is proposing:

  1. Separate into two organizations: KEDCO would be replaced with two separate arms’ length organizations: Tourism Kingston and a new, rebranded economic development organization (EDO). Both organizations would have distinct missions with separate boards.
  1. Establish a new funding relationship with the city: where funding for both Tourism Kingston and the new EDO would be tied to specific activities and outcomes to be reviewed each year at budget time.
  1. Enhance public involvement and direct engagement: more visible and accessible locations would be explored for both Tourism Kingston and the EDO. More public input would be encouraged through new approaches, such as regular open houses and town halls.
  1. Establish a transparency plan: this would include permanent ‘transparency and accountability’ committees for both Tourism Kingston and the EDO and immediate changes including making annual financial and performance reports for both organizations publicly available.
  1. Repositioning the EDO to capitalize on emerging innovation and entrepreneurs: more effort would be focused on taking advantage of Kingston’s existing research and post-secondary assets to foster entrepreneurship and the emerging technologies economy.

There are of course a lot of additional details contained in the 80 page report and for those who are interested you can read the entire report HERE

There will be a formal presentation of the report at our June 21 Council meeting. Following the Council meeting I’m looking forward to consulting with stakeholders from across the community before we take any further steps. Economic development is of critical importance to our community, and now is the time to set the stage for job creation, investment and the future prosperity of Kingston.

Wal-Mart Coming Soon to Rideau Heights

This week City Council granted final zoning approval for a new Wal-Mart development at the old Quarry Sportsplex site near Division Street and Highway 401. This is great news for Kingston’s North End, and an exciting step forward in the regeneration of the Rideau Heights neighbourhood.

It wasn’t all that many years ago that the old IGA in the Kingslake plaza closed its doors, creating a food desert across the north end of the city. Today the Division Street hub has grown, now providing residents shopping options that will be further enhanced and with a new Wal-Mart added to the mix in the near future. The design for this new development ensures that this Wal-Mart will not only be accessible by car and by transit, but also by foot with a walking path from the east end it that will make a manageable walking distance for much of Rideau Heights.

This new commercial development has been several years in the planning stages, and I’m so pleased to see it move ahead. Hopefully we will see shovels in the ground very soon!

Here is a look at the site of the new Wal-Mart, shown below in grey: Walmart rideau heights location map

 

From the Mayor’s Chair – June 7

Check out the latest version of From the Mayor’s Chair, where I break down the decisions of Council in 2 minutes.

Highlights from the June 7 Council meeting include the zoning approval for a new Walmart at the old quarry sports dome near Division Street and Hwy 401. Council approved a new community working group for the visioning exercise for Kingston Penitentiary and  Portsmouth Olympic Harbour. And in reaction to complaints from residents, council also approved a motion in support of a provincial bill aimed at banning door-to-door sales of air conditioners, water heaters, furnaces, water treatment devices. 

Watch the June 7 edition of From the Mayor’s Chair here

From the Mayor's Chair -

For previous From the Mayor’s Chair segments visit the media tab at the top of this website

Commuter Challenge & Cycle Week!

 

Commuter Challenge - 2

June 5-11 is Commuter Challenge and Cycle Week 2016!

The Commuter Challenge is a friendly competition between Canadian cities and workplaces that encourages Canadians to leave their cars at home and instead use active transportation and log commutes using alternative transportation. Over the past several years Kingstonians have taken the challenge and ranked first in the medium- sized city category for the past four years and last year had the second highest participation rate in all of Canada!   

To learn more about the Commuter Challenge click here and to register to participate click here 

In honour of this years’ commuter challenge KFL&A Public Health asked me to answer four questions for commuter challenge participants, here they are: 

What does a ‘Smart and Livable City’ mean to you?

The vision to be a smart and livable city is about the opportunity to build on our amazing assets and make Kingston an even better place to call home. Like cities across the country we face challenges – environmentally, socially and economically – but I believe these challenges are best tacked collectively. The vision is about big picture thinking and building partnerships to move our community forward together.  By harnessing our incredible assets, our collective creativity and energy we will improve the quality of life for all.
In recent years Kingston has represented itself very well in the Commuter Challenge, winning 1st place in our city size category for the past 4 years. Why do you think the Commuter Challenge fits so well with our city?

The Commuter Challenge is about leaving the car at home and exploring active ways to get around in our community. Kingston has emerged as a leader in this challenge over the years thanks to the dedication of volunteers and participants who take the challenge as an opportunity to showcase support for the continued investment in active transportation options and networks in Kingston.

How is the city working to support people using active transportation?

As a city we continue to work to enhance active transportation, making more options available and accessible across our community. Specific examples include working to complete the K&P trail by Canada’s 150th anniversary in 2017, ongoing service enhancements to Kingston Transit and increasing the bike lane network. We are also working to connect and beautify spaces; examples include the Waterfront Master Plan to revitalize and connect our beautiful waterfront and a commitment to increasing the city’s tree canopy.

Can people get involved in this process?

One of Council’s top priorities for our term is fostering open government and encouraging more engagement. Community input is important to me and I am always seeking opportunities to hear from you.  Together we can all play a role in generating innovative and implementing solutions unique to our community. I want to hear from you, connect with me on social media, on my website, e-mail or in person at events or around the community.

Twitter: @MayorPaterson

Facebook: Mayor Paterson

e-mail: mayor@cityofkingston.ca