Canadian Growth City No. 10: Kingston Links Past and Present Culture

Affordable Housing, Quality of Life Attract U-Haul Movers

Kingston City Hall
Kingston City Hall

Playing off the official city motto of “Where History and Innovation Thrive,” Mayor Bryan Paterson noted that Kingston’s “dual identity” is one trait that helps lure residents to his corner of Eastern Ontario.

It turns out there are plenty of reasons why U-Haul trucks have been pulling into Kingston with some regularity.

“We’re definitely positioned for growth,” Paterson said. “We’re attracting new businesses to the community, but we’re also attracting people. We have a fabulous city with an amazing quality of life. It’s just a matter of creating those employment opportunities.”

Plan Ahead: Reserve a Truck in Advance for Your Summer Move

Kingston kicks off the countdown of U-Haul Top 10 Canadian Growth Cities for 2015 in the No. 10 position. Growth rankings are determined by the net gain of incoming one-way U-Haul truck rentals versus outgoing rentals for the past calendar year.

U-Haul locations in Kingston saw 51.4 percent of truck rental customers coming into the city as opposed leaving. Kingston welcomed 1 percent more U-Haul arrivals year-over-year, while its departures were down fractionally.Quote from kingston Mayor

Rob Kilfoyle, general manager of U-Haul Moving & Storage of Kingston, is a lifelong resident of the area. He pointed to the arrival of college and university students during the school year; government job opportunities through correctional services and the Canadian Forces Base; and a swell in the seniors/retirement sector as a few of the growth indicators.

“We’re one of the oldest and most historic cities in Canada with Fort Henry and an incredible heritage established centuries ago,” Paterson said. “At the same time, we’re an active post-secondary education sector. We’re very much a college and university town with Queen’s University, the Royal Military College of Canada, and St. Lawrence College. All three institutions are engines of innovation and entrepreneurship, new ideas and new technology.

“We’re very progressive in wanting to be a leading city. We try to create that interesting (dual identity) throughout downtown. We have a historical downtown, but we also have some modern infrastructure, entertainment centers and residential growth.”

The city is the first of five Ontario destinations to make the Top 10 Growth Cities list for 2015. Continue following the countdown on myuhaulstory.com each weekday through March 4 to see the No. 1 city revealed.

Photo credit: City of Kingston (Blues Festival and City Hall) and Tim Forbes via City of Kingston (Downtown Marina).

 

Kingston growth facts

More on Kingston

  1. City Hall, constructed in the 1840s, is one of the country’s most storied buildings. Kingston actually served as the first capital of Canada from 1841-1844 and is celebrating its 175th anniversary of holding that distinction. The country’s first Prime Minister, John A. Macdonald, called Kingston home. Today, 124,000 residents call the city home – or some 145,000 including college and university students living there.
  2. The one U-Haul store in Kingston, located at 2459 Princess Street, has been serving the community since 1984. There are six U-Haul neighborhood dealers renting out moving trucks and trailers as well thanks to the addition of two new dealers in 2015.

Quotable

  • “I like that Kingston is not a small town, but it’s not a big town either. It’s a nice, medium-sized city with everything you need. Healthcare is good with three hospitals. You have the retail shopping and things to do. And the water is right there. I bought a boat last year. You can launch your boat on Lake Ontario, and you’re on your way.” — Rob Kilfoyle, general manager of U-Haul Moving & Storage of Kingston
  • “You’ll find a lot of affordable housing in Kingston. It’s three hours from Toronto, two hours from Ottawa. It’s has a good student following, good business and Queens University is there.” — Antony Grocott, U-Haul Company of Eastern Ontario president

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What was your favorite thing about living in or visiting Kingston?  Share in the comments.

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