The City of Kingston has revealed its issues and options paper on mid-rise and tall buildings it’s calling ‘Design by Density.’ This policy, once adopted, will help to shape where and how developments four storeys or greater are approved, and looks to make development in areas identified as being able to support an increase in density easier (the “green light” areas), while making development in other areas more difficult.
The city is seeking feedback from residents on this paper to help determine changes to the proposal before it moves towards policy adoption in 2020.
How you can get involved
1. Read the proposal
The city has published its Design By Density paper on its website, including maps of areas it hopes to foster easier, higher-density developments. The complete ‘Issues and Options’ report is 48 pages and includes a background on work completed so far, a break down of current policy, a look at where each of the proposed intensification areas are, and information on next steps for this policy.
2. Attend the open house
The City of Kingston is hosting a Design by Density open house on this paper on Thursday, Nov. 21, 2019 from 3 to 6:30 p.m. in Memorial Hall on the 2nd floor of City Hall. Municipal planners, other city staff, and urban design consultant Brent Toderain will be at the open house to answer questions from members of the public on the report.
3. Attend (or be a part of) the Planning Committee meeting
Following the open house, City Council’s Planning Committee meets at 6:30 p.m. in Council Chambers, which is also on the 2nd floor of City Hall. As with all Planning Committee meetings, members of the public are able to sign up at the door and speak to the committee to provide their input. Planning Committee won’t be voting on this paper that night, but comments from the public could help shape the policy before it does come back to the committee for a vote in the new year.
4. Participate in the online discussion
The City’s Get Involved page on the Density By Design paper is live. Residents can register for the feedback platform for free, then provide input on this or any other project the city is soliciting feedback on. It’s a great way to make sure your voice is heard on municipal affairs. Comments on this project are open until Tuesday, Dec. 31, 2019.
Want to participate on Twitter? The city is using #DensityByDesign on the platform for discussions, though it’s important to note that Twitter feedback won’t be entered as formal feedback on the proposal like comments on the Get Involved platform are. Use #ygk in your tweets, too, for wider visibility.
4. Talk to your councillor
Your municipal councillor is your voice at city hall on this and all other local issues. If you don’t feel like the above options will work to get your opinions heard, letting your councillor know how you feel is a great way to add your comments to the discussion. The city’s page on councillors shows the districts — find yours, find your councillor and get in touch!
5. Stay involved
This policy is going to change the City’s Official Plan — meaning that changes we make now could affect the city for years (or decades) to come. The city is also asking residents to email Andrea Gummo, who is the project manager on this file, if they wish to receive regular email updates directly.
Kingstonist will continue to follow this policy change and update to the official plan over the weeks and months ahead.