STILL SOME JUNIOR SAILING CAMP OPENINGS AT KYC for the White Sail I & II sailing program for the 2-week session beginning June 30th. Pass the word.
AT THE KINGSTON PUBLIC HEARING of the International Board of Control, which was held Tuesday evening at City Hall, speakers expressed overwhelming support in favour of Plan B+.
Plan B+ is the lake water-level management scheme which would see generally more water retained in Lake Ontario, for longer periods, under a wide range of conditions, especially during fair weather seasons.
Call it "the keep more water here plan". It's also the plan computer models show as having the higher range of water levels -- the highest highs, but also the lowest lows -- during the boating season. It's also the plan favoured by many environmental groups.
But many who have built in places that prudence would never advise aren't keen on Plan B+. Some were here in Kingston City Hall on Tuesday night too.
Plan B+ and Plan 2007 compared under average and extreme high and low-water conditions.
The Health Unit Communications Officer, Mr Justin Chenier, has made it very clear: there are currently no plans for a link, nevermind a dedicated page, about local beaches on the Health Unit website. Don't even think about it; it's not on the radar.
If you need the latest on local beaches, you'll need to root through the Health Unit's news dispatches, essentially fending for yourself, interpreting the fragmentary disclosures therein. Assuming you find it at all.
Also, this Health Unit declares beaches unsafe, but does not explicitly declare them safe again. So faced with, say, a 5-day old beach report, what should one conclude?
Alternately, you could consult this City of Kingston web page (found via "Residents", then "Environment", not "Recreation") which provides a list, but with no date-of-update and no other cues, so information freshness is always in doubt here. This same page showed Lake Ontario Park Beach and Rotary Park Beach closed for most of the winter, a sign that keeping this list fresh certainly wasn't any sort of priority last year.
The City web page currently links to the Health Unit's old website address (http://www.healthunit.on.ca/programs/environ.html) which, like all references to the old website, redirects to the current home page where, assuming the beach news hasn't scrolled-off, you might find more beach-related information in the 4-item news-area found there.
This is all very sloppy. There's no possible excuse for this.
Now look at Toronto: they do it better. Toronto has:
Here in Kingston, don't even think of making suggestions for the Health Unit website: they are evidently only interested in hearing themselves tell you how great the KFL&A Health Unit website is. You'll be talking with God's gift to local beach users. That's got to change.
All this is emblematic of how much our municipal and local bureaucracies, at every level, need a swift kick-in-the-butt when it comes to respecting our waterfront and its users.
See also: You snooze, you lose -- Kingston's disappearing waterfront. This beach-report situation is more evidence that some nine-to-fivers among us are evidently auto-stumbling through their waterfront-related dossiers.
The scuttling is supposed to be just off Browns Bay Provincial Park, near Mallorytown on the 1000 Islands Parkway.
Add your name to the list of signators and support this.
ROTATED AND UNREADABLE is Major Capital Projects (Schedule B) in this week's Council documents. Inside, zooming-in and squinting, are the following tallies:
|JK Tett Building||$13.0 million||in 2010|
|Lake Ontario Park upgrades||$8.5 million||through 2013|
|Deep Sea Dock||$7.0 million||through 2012|
|Waterfront land aquisition/trail development||$3.0 million||through 2011|
|9 North Street, the Imperial Warehouse||$1.5 million||through 2010|
Updated: The city cleaned-up and re-posted the document, and readability is much improved.
The Waterfront Challenge is a national [ed: actually, North American] competition to encourage people who care about their local waterfront, to improve their local waterfront.
The Challenge is designed for any group of three or more people who want to spend a minimum of two days of their lives improving their local waterfront and encouraging others to do the same. Projects should be new, and make some part of your waterfront an environmentally better place.
Seven regional awards of $5,000 each will be presented, along with a separate grand prize of $25,000. Canada is considered a region. Projects must be completed by November 5 2008.
THE MUSEUM OF UNDERWATER ARCHAEOLOGY is a cool outreach by underwater archaeologists and maritime historians. It's an example of how the web is bringing otherwise obscure science and history to a wider audience.
They are currently conducting research in Lake Ontario on wrecks near Kingston. A recent jourunal entry from May 2008 describes work off Carleton Island, on the other side of Wolfe Island near Cape Vincent.
In the Whig today, this story about a move by the Kingston Historical Society to rename Breakwater Park after Lt.-Col. John Bradstreet, the British officer who led the battle to overthrow Fort Frontenac 250-years ago this August.
The French among us may not be amused by this idea. John Bradstreet had 3,000 men at his disposal against 110 French soldiers garrisoned inside the Fort.
Maybe this park could be renamed in perpetuity after present-day narcissists for the equivalent of one-sixth the cost of a single renovation. Like what's happened to Market Square. Here's a reminder how that went down. For history's sake.
HERE'S THE ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT R.F.I. for the third crossing of the Great Cataraqui River (10 pages). Submissions are due by June 25th.
The proposed period of environmental assessment is between November 2008 and December 2010, which ends just beyond this term of Council.
Here's the problem:
In prior years, the seawalls of Block D, some 200 linear meters worth, were commonly used for docking, including docking very large boats. The Block D seawall was also used for RC model boat competitions.
The current proposal for Token Park has the seawall finished with stone boulders, just like most of Kingston's waterfront.
Which begs these questions: