“Wrong and fundamentally unfair” is how a feud is being described between the City of Kingston and HarbourEdge, the company that owns the Kingston Thousand Islands Sportsplex.
It all came to a head last week when the city informed the organizers of an arts show that it wouldn’t be able to go forward due to zoning restrictions at the dome.
“A dispute erupted when the City decided that it did not want the Sportsplex to host further trade shows,” manager of the Sportsplex Paula Noel said in a statement to Global News. “Driven by the City’s obvious desire to create a trade show monopoly in City owned facilities.”
The letter also states that the company’s own review of the City of Kingston zoning bylaws suggests they are able to host events like trade shows.
Venue management also claims that during the most recent trade show held at the Sportsplex in March, fire inspectors with the City of Kingston visited eight times in four days.
“The inspectors interrupted ongoing demonstrations and sales, and interrogated vendors, without any justification,” the statement from Noel reads.
This apparently led to the city laying fire code charges, which HarbourEdge says it is confident will be dismissed, adding that they are in the process of suing the City of Kingston for damages incurred during this process.
While they wouldn’t comment on the allegations, the City of Kingston did address the situation in its own letter to Global News.
“The City has been working with the owners of the 1000 Islands Sportsplex for a number of months to achieve an outcome on this matter,” the statement reads. “Because compliance was not obtained, we are now in this situation.”