King’s Town council candidates field questions in public forum

Click to play video: 'King’s Town council candidates field questions in public forum'
King’s Town council candidates field questions in public forum
The candidates provided their views on a variety of topics, ranging from housing to the state of Queen Street – Oct 13, 2022

All three of the candidates vying for the King’s Town council seat were in attendance in front of a packed house at Central Public School Wednesday night.

The all-candidates meeting was an event where residents of the area voiced their questions and concerns to the three people who may end up representing them.

Read more: Online voting for Kingston, Ont. municipal election gets underway Oct. 5

The number one issue on everyone’s mind was the housing crisis, and this is what each candidate had to say about the matter:

Alexandria Liu: “We want to increase publicly owned housing. Everybody deserves to be in a home. People shouldn’t be profiting from someone needing somewhere to live. That money can come back into the city and it can continuously be reinvested back into the city.”

Story continues below advertisement

Greg Ridge: “Their current housing and homelessness strategy is very dependent upon private development. I think we’re past the point now… if the market were to have solved this problem, it would’ve solved it by now.”

Keith Bilow: “There are a lot of structures in town that are being used as Airbnbs. There’s got to be some stuff done about that because they should actually be rentals. We’ve got to move away from that.”

Another issue on the docket was the state of Queen Street, which has been voted one of the worst roads in Ontario in the annual CAA poll.

As part of the Capital Condo project, $61,000 was given to the city to conduct a study on how to redevelop Queen Street.

Here are each candidate’s views on the state of the street and the study:

Greg Ridge: “I would like to see a study that would be done on accessibility. I don’t know if anybody knows anyone who has a disability or if they’re disabled themselves, but getting around in the downtown area can be incredibly difficult.”

Keith Bilow: “Between the project across the street here and the buildings at the bottom of Queen Street, I don’t think there’s going to be much other development there. I don’t know where we could do some, because there’s going to have to be some sort of commercial element in here.”

Story continues below advertisement

Alexandria Liu: “It felt a little bit insulting for an expensive condo to come in here, and they’re going to make how much money off of putting how many of us on the street by increasing our rent. Then they say, ‘You know what? We’ll give you $60,000 to study something, and whatever answer you get to that study, you can fund it yourself.'”

Read more: Williamsville, Ont. candidates meet for debate ahead of municipal election

Whichever of the three candidates gets elected to represent the district will be new to the seat — longtime councillor Rob Hutchison isn’t running again.

This means a fresh face will be representing King’s Town after election day on Oct. 24.

Sponsored content