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Kingston Concerned About LVEC
Currently known as the "KROCK Centre"
Formerly the "Kingston Regional Sports and Entertainment Centre" or KRSEC
Formerly the "Large Venue Entertainment Centre" or LVEC
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The KCAL News Feed -- July 2005
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July 29, 2005

LETTER: Sandy Crothers

The Whig Standard published this letter from Sandy Crothers today. Sandy is the manager of St-Lawrence Marina on Anglin Bay, currently operated by MetalCraft Marine.

It seems the Anglin Bay LVEC project got input from a marinaadvisory sub-committee, stacked with hand-picked members which didn't include anyone from the current marina, but included competitors, namely from Collins Bay Marina and the Commodore of Trident Yacht Club. All the other members of the sub-committee are individuals of, coincidentally and conveniently, little or no marine-related repute.

Guess what they recommended?They put the best possible face on building the LVEC on Anglin Bay (not building in this location wasn't ever on the agenda), urging the shutdown of the Marina, gas dock and all -- a nice earner -- and only rent the slips to transient boaters. In other words, the marina would be mostly empty except in high season.

The sub-committee made no mention that Kingston's entire marine service industry will dissapear as a result of building the LVEC. The only other current service location, Rideau Marina, is owned by Homestead, the region's most aggressive property developer.

This is another classic example of the sort of abuse that seems to happen whenever the the regulator is also the developer.

Published: 07/29/05 03:47:15 PM
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July 27, 2005

Whig: More secrecy at City Hall: Details of contract with Frontenacs hockey team blacked out

This item dates back to June 15th, but it's worth bringing up at this time since we now have the full text of the article.

There are some apparent shenanigans between City and the Springer family, owners of the Kingston Frontenacs, the main tennants of the proposed LVEC.

Published: 07/27/05 02:54:32 PM
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Whig: An epitaph for KEDCO

We've finally posted the text of Claude Scilley's excellent editorial titled An epitaph for KEDCO which was published on Juy 18, 2005.

Read the whole thing, as well as this letter in response from Betty Harlow.

KEDCO's been taking a well-deserved pounding in the mainstream media these days. There is no question that, as a thinly disguised marketing arm of Council, they aren't producing results, nor being real business and resident's advocates, for the heap of our tax dollars that are thrown their way. With KEDCO there are never any downsides, and never any hard choices, and everything is always rosy and easy.

Published: 07/27/05 12:29:01 PM
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July 26, 2005

CKWS: LVEC COUNCIL

The City of Kingston's plan to build a 37-million dollar Large Venue Entertainment Centre cleared another hurdle last night with the approval of a market study.

Read the whole thing.
Published: 07/26/05 04:33:08 PM
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July 12, 2005

KEDCO: Reaching our Potential

The Kingston Economic Development Corporation (KEDCO) today released a 16-page economic development blueprint titled Reaching our Potential, that will guide plans to re-energize the city's economy over the next few years.

As you might expect, the report mentions the LVEC project:

Read that again. The LVEC continues to be presented by KEDCO as a notable driver of full-time tourism employment in the Kingston region. We think not.

Has anyone ever ordered a peer-review of the plans and documents that these people produce?

Published: 07/12/05 11:46:53 PM
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July 10, 2005

New photos of workings at Anglin Bay

We've just received several photos of some of the bigger boats served by the 75-ton crane and the other service capabilities of the marina on Anglin Bay.

If the proposed LVEC is built here, and when the Homestead-owned Rideau Marina is redeveloped, then theKingston region will cease to have a reasonably complete marine maintenance and service infrastructure.

That's because there are no marine services whatsoever available at Confederation Basin, fuel only for small and mid-sized boats at the Kingston Yacht Club and Treasure Island Marina, just fuel at Portsmouth Olympic Harbour, and fuel and about half the hoist capability at Collins Bay Marina. None of these harbours have dedicated on-site marine maintenance personnel with complete workshops to support them. The best some of these sites can muster is dock-side maintenance and repair scenarios, calling-in for hoist and fix capability.

Yet the so-called "Stakeholders Advisory Marina Sub-Committee" has produced this error-filled and, frankly, ridiculous two-page draft report that doesn't mention any of this.

One would hope that if the Kingston region stands to seriously downgrade its marine maintenance and service capabilities (when everywhere else these services are, if anything, expanding), and if convenient fuel facilities are unavailable for boats visiting downtown, that someone in the fully-staffed and consultant-loaded LVEC machine will be on to this.

If anything, once this is realized, what we have here is a genuine face-saving show-stopping reason to work towards alternatelocations for the proposed LVEC.

Published: 07/10/05 12:25:44 PM
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July 6, 2005

Whig: Arena luxury boxes ready to lease

Derek Baldwin reports in the Wednesday, July 6th edition of The Whig that the city is moving to lease LVEC private boxes even though the project doesn't have political approval.

The Whig persists in describing this as a "$37. 3-million" project even though this figure doesn't include the cost of the waterfront land, the cost of MetalCraft Marine's expropriation and relocation, the realistic costs of site finishes required to make the building, the parkland site, and the marina into a "jewel" (their words), nor does it include the costs overruns that always (always) accompany projects with pivotal bogus deadlines, nevermind the cost overruns that always come with these sorts of projects under the best of conditions.

Regardless, if anything, this signals that it's time for Kingston's downtown businesses to pony-up. We suspect Don Gedge needs the cashflow to keep his retinue of city staff and outside consultants in clover without needing to go back to council for additional funds. Just whom is overseeing the management of the funds of this LVEC project has never been clear. What is clear is a key element of strategy is to burn enough, soon enough, in order to make turning back an unpalatable option.

This is what happens when the overseer is also the developer. Haste in order to make waste, as it were.

Published: 07/06/05 06:55:16 PM
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July 5, 2005

Public Consultation Window Dressing

Amid the attachments on the agenda of the July 5th LVEC Steering Committee Meeting:

Recommendation: That the attached reports developed by the LVEC Stakeholders Advisory Group be forwarded and reviewed by the LVEC Steering Committee, the LVEC Project Management staff, the selected LVEC Design-Build team and the Operator of the LVEC.

It's 97 pages long. The first 25 pages are improperly collated and appear incomplete, especially the contributions from "Representatives Of The Neighbouring Buildings". Certainly nobody actually paid particular attention while collating them.

There are a number of frankly unbelievable recommendations coming out of the marina advisory sub-committee that we will be pounding on soon.

Who submitted this broken document? Ed Smith, and Mac Gervan, co-chairs of the Stakeholders Advisory Group. Fine work there, gentlemen.

The remaining 72 pages are photocopies of the 2005 Memorial Cup bidding procedures, and requirements to host the Juno Awards.

In other attachments, the LVEC MARKET STUDY TERMS OF REFERENCE document reflects its role in window dressing in that the location, and the presumption that patrons will walk hundreds of meters to the LVEC, will not be subject to any reality testing, as if "location" and "customer" were somehow exorciated from the field of marketing study. It's clear that the marketing study is not being used as an opportunity to avoid costly mistakes.

This is what happens when the regulator is also the developer.

Published: 07/05/05 04:10:07 PM
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Last Updated: March 3, 2009