We Wish You All a Happy New Year

The Aragon Road is not always a quiet and best kept secret of rural tranquility, especially the fall hunting season brought several duck hunters to our area; their shots could be heard echoing across the lake in the early mornings, including Sundays. Ah well, that is the price we pay for living in a rich and diverse natural environment.

Towards the end of 2015 we also witnessed a concentration of police activity at the conservation area which ended in the tragic death of a person.  Our community came together and our thoughts are with the victim and his family.

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We hope that 2016 will bring good tidings to our road and that it will be a year of conservation and preservation of what we have, thanks to the actions of some of our neighbours past. The Cecil and Wilma Graham Park is included in Waterfront Master Plan of the city but any modification to the park will be simple and conform to the wishes of the donors that the area is “for the enjoyment of the public”. Whatever the preliminary design shows, such as a parking area and footpaths plus a boat ramp for small watercraft is scheduled at least ten years in the future. By then the Waterfront Master Plan is out of date and local government and citizens will come up with something different.

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We will have to wait and see what happens with the 50 acres for sale just west of the Fitzpatrick Road and, separately, the potential sale of the Graham Farm, including the 10 acres at the end of the Graham land where the angel stone bungalow sits unoccupied.

The end of 2015 was also unusual for the weather that seems to be affected by El Nino, a huge boiling hot body of water off the Pacific coast of the Americas, it is big enough that it affects our local weather; as late as Saturday, January 2 of the new year, we observed geese, ducks and two white Mute Swans happily floating just beyond the frozen shallow Draper Bay in front of our house. The lake and the canal where wide open water and the birds obviously did not see the need to migrate a little south to open water around Front Road in Lake Ontario. Now they are all gone.

As soon as the Rural Advisory  Committee meets and has relevant issues to report we will bring you up to date via our posts. In the meantime we wish everybody the very best for 2016.

To read more click the icon and it will take you to the INDEX.

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LAND FOR SALE

You might have seen a “For Sale” sign up on the land just east of the boat ramp. It is a 56 acre plot of prime agricultural land that offers us a wide vista looking north over the fields. The real estate firm describes it as: “56.46 acres of prime land with mature, managed forest. Land fronts on Aragon Road with water view. Front field offers excellent opportunity for development. Steel barn is positioned on second field. 40’ right of way to Rideau directly in front of property. For more details go here: http://www.rtcr.com/listing1745-kingston-land-property-for-sale-aragon-road

for sale golden farm land

The 56 acres borders on the Aragon Road and then north to Unity Road. Part of it has  been planted with trees in the late 1980s by Jack Golden  who owns the land. The piece just over the fence is the area that people would like to convert from prime agricultural to rural/residential.

The front field offers “excellent opportunity for development” according to Rogers and Trainer Real Estate. But the land is designated Prime Agricultural on schedule 3-B of the Official Plan. It might be possible to get an amendment for the establishment of a residence on a  2.5 acre section, but only once. We will have to wait and see what comes up in the planning and approval process.

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The Graham farm might come up for sale also after the death of the owner, Wilma Graham in 2015. Wilma left a legacy see Index or click here: Wilma was our oldest neighbour on the road and for her stories click here  Story Telling by Wilma 

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The Graham farm a year ago. At that time Wilma Graham participated by telling her story of life on the farm. Photo Henk Wevers.

Wilma and Cecil Graham left us a stretch of rural road that is characteristic of the early 1950s when they married and settle in the farm house. In fact the trees and landscaping can be called historic: the trees are more than hundred years old and we can thank the stubbornness of Cecil that the scenery has little changed. Cecil and Wilma liked the land as it was; in the late 1950s, they refused to sell lots east of their farm where the small “angel stone” house is now located, and where the estate lots start. To the west they kept the land as it was, bordering the field that is now for sale.

Then, in the mid 1980s they were adamant that Ontario Hydro could not change the existing right of way through their fields to a new one along the road. Had they give permission to do so it would have destroyed the magnificent scenery and the trees would no longer be there.  See the photos below, taken in July and October 2015.

graham trees july 2015 a graham trees oct 14 2015 ineke

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In contrast I also show what it would have been if Cecil and Wilma had not protected the road in front of their farm.

graham trees hydro cut oct 14 2015

This is the hydro corridor in the Graham farm fields located to the north of the farm house. The photo was taken a week after Hydro One had cleared the right of way.

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Then at the end of Graham’s farm is a stone house, original a frame house  that Cecil Graham transported from somewhere on a large trailer to the site. This occurred in the mid 1980-s. It has been rented but that might not be possible again, so it will also be for sale one might think. The site could be used for something else or for building a new house since it is already a residential lot, I assume.

So change is once again coming to our area.

This raises a question. What is the future of our Aragon Road? Change is probably inevitable but we owe it to Cecil and Wilma Graham to preserve the character of the original “forced road”as much as possible . If the Aragon Road is an nice place it will attract others to share what we have enjoyed over the years. We cannot play the “nimby” game since we came here and changed the area as well.

BUT, how to be fair and share our style of rural living and how much should we try to preserve.  The land that is designated  prime agricultural has been set aside for the future. One does not endlessly develop farm land that gives us food, for now and very likely for our children and grandchildren well into the future. The Official Plan of the City of Kingston is clear about that.

Next would be the question what the parkland, wetlands and conservation areas should look like and what might or should not be done.  Currently that is addressed in the Waterfront Mater Plan in the final draft stage.

On Monday, November 16, in the Olympic Harbour building, Portsmouth Village, there is an open house organised by the City to view the final draft of this plan and to give the public a last change to provide comments and suggestions. After this it will go to Council for approval.

Maybe you wish to come and see what is planned for the Aragon Road: the boat ramp, park, conservation area and more.

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Pleas click the the icon to go to the INDEX.

wmp cecel wilma park jan 30 2014