City Wide Priority:

Build more Housing!!

One of my greatest disappointments with the past four years has been the reluctance of Council to approve some larger housing development projects.

The Tannery is the best example of this. The Tannery project would have provided 1600 units of desperately needed housing in an area of the City that would promote walkability and greater use of public and active transportation and less reliance on cars. It was a win in terms of providing substantially more housing and a win in terms of achieving our climate goals.

Too often Council bows to special interest groups who are opposed to development and economic stimulus for Kingston. Saving the trees on this profoundly contaminated piece of property is the carbon sequestration equivalent of taking four to six cars off the road – barely a drop in the bucket.

In the meantime, our population continues to grow – we are going to need nearly 13,000 new units of housing just to support the population growth that we expect over the next seven years.

We need to do so much more on the housing front. If we are going to encourage our young people to stay and new entrepreneurs to come to Kingston, we are going to have to offer them a variety of housing options that are both affordable and appealing.

We will never even begin to be able to address the issue of unhoused people in our community without a significant increase in the available housing stock.

We need to find ways to encourage developers to incorporate more affordable housing options into their projects. The last thing our City Council should be doing is discouraging housing from being built.  It will get built – in places like Gananoque, Loyalist Township and other areas outside of Kingston more friendly to development. It will mean more dependence on cars, higher green house gas emissions and fewer tax dollars to support local services.

We have to get building and we have to support local developers who live and work here and who care about the Kingston they will leave to their kids.