A Defining Election Issue for Kingston
In 2006, Kingston’s mayoral election was arguably fought and won over a single, campaign-defining issue. In one corner, the incumbent Harvey Rosen bet it all on the K-Rock Centre, while contender Rick Downes countered with a move to put the breaks on construction of Kingston’s multi-million dollar Large Venue Entertainment Centre. When the last ballot was cast, Rosen dangled from a razor thin margin of 730 votes, a mere 1.93 percent more than Downes. With Rosen’s announcement that he will not seek a third term in the big chair, and 5 candidates already declared, there’s a great deal of speculation as to who will be elected Mayor of Kingston on October 25th, 2010. Equally as important, this week’s poll question asks:
What issue/project will define the 2010 Mayoral election?
- Third Crossing over Cataraqui River (255%, 51 Votes)
- Invista Centre Aquatic Centre (125%, 25 Votes)
- Big Box vs Downtown Development (120%, 24 Votes)
- Something Else Entirely (100%, 20 Votes)
- New Space for City Administration (10%, 2 Votes)
Total Voters: 122
The election drum may be faint at the moment, but we’re closing in fast on the deadline for candidates to announce their intention to run for Kingston’s top political job. Kingstonist has been gauging public opinion on a great deal of issues ranging from the necessity of a third crossing to recreational infrastructure, as well as the closure of local prison farms. Up until now we haven’t really asked whether there’s a single issue that you would be willing to base your Mayoral vote on. Perhaps the 2006 election was a totally different beast than the 2010 race, in which case this race will be defined by numerous focal points. In any case, please drop a few comments off below to let us know what you’re basing your vote on this time around.
Thanks to Sony200Boy for today’s photo of after a Take Back Parliament meeting in Piccadilly Gardens, Manchester.
7 thoughts on “A Defining Election Issue for Kingston”
While the hotly debated "third crossing" issue will I'm sure be THE issue, I'm very interested in that candidates' positions regarding the sprawling nature of Kingston's development.
Of those I'd say its the pool. Its very "optional" and the economics of operating it are horrific. The go ahead for the bridge won't happen in the next 4 years, and I doubt any of them would run against it (Green Party member Matheson very for it) . The office space has to be dealt with despite the mess they've made, but no one can propose a specific plan until staff reports and developer rfps. Not sure what a candidate could say on "Big Box vs Downtown Development", its not like anyone is preventing downtown development (downtown has gotten pretty much everything they wanted), nor can anyone prevent big box in line with existing zoning (or omb rulings). Don't think it matters much though, assuming this is the field Gerretsen has already won.
Breaking news "Nathaniel Wilson" running for mayor. Im sure we all said "who?!"
Apparently as part of an online reality show. Not sure if there are more running
I hope it doesn't get reduced to single-issues stuff and I am not sure we should even be encouraging this. My main concern is introducing some sensible planning policy that controls sprawl and out-of-town big box development in favour of revitalising downtown, but that's just part of having an accountable, responsive, competant local government that understands what 'sustainability' actually means and acts on it rather than just developing slogans and actually doing the opposite. Kingston simply does not have this right now. Survey after survey has shown that Kingston has a great quality of life but that this despite rather than because of, the council and Mayor.
It sounds like the four of them will be running for mayor on the above website. Sorry. I can not take these guys seriously. You do not have a group of four people saying " Hey. Lets all run for mayor". Perhaps if one of them was running and the rest were part of his team, then i would take them seriously
If Kingston intends to become “the most sustainable city in Canada” in reality as well as in promotional materials, it needs to start taking the dual realities of Peak Oil and climate change seriously. This means: promoting pedestrian and bicycle friendly development, subsidizing public transport to make it more attractive and affordable, and developing local food sources. There are some VERY serious events headed our way in the coming decades, and Kingston is no more prepared for it than any other city. There are a million websites that can tell you about these issues.
While the good folks at City Hall are busy debating a proposed third crossing for the east end of the city I feel they should also be taking a good hard look at the existing chaos in the west end of town. Since the construction frenzy over that past several years i.e. McDonald's Restaurant, the new L.C.B.O., Walmart and now the prospect of another mega box store on Midland Avenue traffic has doubled if not tripled in volume. And lets not overlook several new residential areas and one large residential project currently underway along Bayridge Drive leaving the traffic situation beyond frustrating to potentially dangerous for not only the residents living in the west end but traveller's as well. Anyone who doubts the severity of the situation need only try to navigate outer Princess Street in either direction, east or west bound each time there is an accident on Hwy 401 which sadly is becoming a frequent occurrence. East bound vehicles are re-routed across Collin's Bay Road or Odessa to Princess Street while West bound traffic is re-routed from Gardiner's Road west along outer Princess Street. These traffic jams last for many, many hours and are three lanes across at the intersection where vehicles are turning left onto Collin's Bay Road. Residence needing to travel east into the city end up sitting in their driveways for extended periods of time or give up travel completely as they cannot get through the bumper to bumper traffic or through the multiple lanes of traffic. Emergency vehicles attempting to make their way through this nightmare situation better have a "Plan B". Jokingly someone once described Kingston to me as one big roach motel. Once you get in you can never get out. Not a very flattering analogy but perhaps more accurate than Kingstonian's realize.