Montrealers need not get the winter blahs,
suggested a Côte-des-Neiges resident at the special borough council meeting on Nov. 15.
John Margolis suggested bringing life to the outdoors during the winter months. Local parks should not be just for hockey – they should be easily used year-round by families.
Margolis, an enthusiastic cross-country skier in Kent Park, suggests adding a tiny hut and a bench.
“Having access to the parks in the winter for either cross-country skiing or snowshoeing right now – that’s a problem. It’s impossible for families to come to a park to do those activities, because there’s not even a place to sit down and change into ski boots,” he said.
The resident first mentioned his idea at the September council meeting. Later he sent council members a video from a city in Finland that runs programs throughout the winter. Borough director Stéphane Plante was asked to come back with an answer at the end of November.
“They have a system within the city that allows people to use the parks easily without having to get in a car and drive to the country in order to ski or snowshoe,” said the citizen.
Marvin Rotrand had watched the video and found the idea of a winter policy interesting. “We are a Nordic city, yet we don’t really have a winter sports strategy other than hockey at arenas and outdoor rinks. So there is more thought to be given to this. I’m not sure you will be entirely happy with what we’re going to come back with for 2013-14, but it’s a thing that will evolve over time,” said the Snowdon councillor.
Mayor Russell Copeman said the idea of winter tourism is worth looking at. “We are proud of our city year-round, and it does have its winter charm, although not for everyone, but there are things to be done to encourage that. I think that’s a very good point and we’ll look at it closely,” he said.
Marie Cicchini | firstname.lastname@example.org
File photo/Nicholas Teasdale-Boivin