David Mugford and his ‘tiny home’ will be on the move to the Centre 70 curling rink for the summer, after spending the winter parked outside Kingston’s Portsmouth Olympic Harbour.
It’s the second year in a row city council approved the move, once again uprooting what has become a small community.
The short-term solution of bouncing between the two locations is not sustainable, as recognized in the staff report put before council. Two places have been put forward by the city as possible long-term locations: Rodden Park and the Rideau marina.
However, Don Amos, councillor from one of the affected districts, asked that they be removed from consideration.
“Rodden Park is not an appropriate site,” Amos said. “It is well-utilized by others and as Mrs. Wilson indicated they would like a space that is not well utilized.”
It’s a sentiment shared by Ryan Boehme, a councilor from another affected district — Pittsburgh District (12).
“In my mind, it’s just not the right place,” Boehme said. “You’re now going to put people in a place where, unfortunately, the community is just not going to be welcoming.”
Boehme says the Rideau marina has a history in the community. a development application in the past ultimately failed due to heritage protection, he says, and putting the sleeping cabins there would be met with resistance.
A number of other councillors voiced their opposition to removing the two possible locations and mayor Bryan Paterson had his say, as well.
“I understand the concerns,” Paterson said. “Here’s the issue for me: there are no other sites that are on the table right now. I have concern about removing all sites at this point.”
Council voted to keep both locations in consideration and voted for continued support for the project for another year. While the decision on where a full-time location might be is still up in the air, Mugford’s next challenge will be a smooth move to Centre 70 on April 17th.