In 1969, a group of enthusiastic sailors decided to establish CORK to host international sailing events off Kingston. The area offers some of the best fresh-water sailing in the world, excellent wind and wave conditions, and is a short distance from shore to the race courses. Leading up to the 1976 Olympics, the CORK regatta offered excellent training for sailors, coaches and officials and has since become a fixture on the international calendar.
Since 2000 alone, CORK has hosted dozens of North American and World Championships out Portsmouth Olympic Harbour. Highlights include the 2007 ISAF Youth World Sailing Championships, the 2010 Optimist North American Championships, the 2013 Laser North American Championships and the 2014 29er North American and World Championships. In 2015, CORK hosted the Laser Senior World Championships, the Laser Master World Championships and the Laser Radial Youth Championships.
International Sailing Centre of Excellence at Kingston (ISCEK)
For as long as most of us remember, Kingston has been known as a small prison town with multiple higher education institutions. The most notorious prison in Canada, known simply as KP (Kingston Penitentiary) locked the gates behind its first inmates in 1835. On September 30, 2013 it was officially closed - ending a 178 year storied history.
With the expected re-development of the KP site looming large in our collective minds it is time for the people of Kingston to take charge of what our fair city by the lake will be known for 178 years from now. ISCEK
The ISCEK proposal is for a bold, extraordinary and unique undertaking.
Located on the shores of Lake Ontario, with the best sailing conditions in the world, and adjacent to a world-renowned regatta organizer (CORK –site of the 1976 Olympic sailing events) and also to the head office of Sail Canada, IScEK is uniquely positioned to deliver the leadership, training and development for Canadian sailors to own the podium .
We propose that the site and buildings of the decommissioned Kingston Penitentiary be transferred to a charitable organization in a negotiated agreement with Public Works Canada. This transfer will enable the people of Canada to take full advantage of the value of this historically significant, and strategically located property.
The dual goals of this proposal are:
1 achieving excellence in sport and;
2 unlocking the value of the site via thoughtful rehabilitation, repurposing and redevelopment.
Successfully achieving these two goals will ensure that ISCEK is entirely financially self-sustainable, including new equipment and technologies, and hiring of top flight personnel to deliver on the ISCEK mission.