City closing Gord Downie Pier, beach after large gatherings in University District

Photo by Logan Cadue.

After Kingston Police and City Bylaw Enforcement Officers responded to large gatherings in the University District earlier this week, the City of Kingston stated in a media release that they will again close Gord Edgar Downie Pier and the beach area at Breakwater Park.

According to the release from the city, dated Thursday, Sept. 2, 2021, the closure is to reduce the risk of large gatherings that have the potential to spread COVID-19.

“The pandemic is not yet behind us. This measure is being taken to safeguard our community, on the recommendation of both KFL&A Public Health and Kingston Police. We know that the pier and beach area in Breakwater Park are extremely popular, and over the last few days we have seen large crowds that far exceed the current provincial limits on outdoor gatherings,” said Mayor Bryan Paterson. “We all look forward to the day such measures will be unnecessary. Unfortunately, the recent crowding on streets in the University District demonstrates the necessity of taking this measure today.”  

The Mayor issued the emergency order that will close the park officially for 18 days as of 4 p.m. today, Thursday, Sept. 2, 2021. Fencing is being erected to close access to the Gord Edgar Downie Pier and beach area at Breakwater Park. City Bylaw Enforcement and Kingston Police will be closely monitoring other parks in and around the University District, according to the release. 

This emergency order means people will not be permitted to use the Gord Edgar Downie Pier and the beach area at Breakwater Park for the next 18 days. Anyone using this area, even alone, is now subject to fines.

Enforcement under Administrative Monetary Penalties (AMPs) 

Residents who attempt to access the Gord Edgar Downie Pier and beach area at Breakwater Park during the emergency closure period can be fined $2,000 under the City’s Administrative Monetary Penalties (AMPs) for failure to comply with an emergency order. Fines issued under the City’s AMPs must be paid and appealed directly through the City. For further information about Administrative Monetary Penalties, please visit

Have you witnessed a gathering of concern?  Contact Kingston Police using this non-emergency number: 613-549-4660. 

Stay up-to-date with the City’s COVID-19 changes and visit the KFL&A Public Health website to find answers to questions about COVID-19.

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