A second toboggan hill will officially be coming to Amherstburg with other leisure activities also available to be accommodated.
As part of 2024 budget deliberations, town council has earmarked $25,000 to groom and prepare the hill at the Libro Centre for use as a location for sledding and tobogganing as well as cycling and other recreational opportunities.
Councillor Molly Allaire made a motion to remove the money from budget, citing safety concerns.
Allaire, the mother of three sons, wondered what would happen if one of her children elected to try going down the hill in a different direction that what was intended. She feared something could happen to them and other children who may try it, not to mention damaging other amenities that have been created such as the Windsor-Essex Bike Community (WEBC) trails.
Councillor Don McArthur was enthusiastic about leaving it in, stating his belief a lot of people are using the hill and would continue to do so.
“I’m quite excited about this project,” he said. “Residents vote with their feet and they are voting in favour of the Libro hill.”
McArthur recalled using it in the past for sledding, going out with his daughter to try it out. He envisioned it working well with the existing Russell Renaud hill in H. Murray Smith Centennial Park, as youth can try both. Cycling and walking can be other uses for the hill, he added.
Councillor Linden Crain said the Libro Centre is turning into a “mecca for sports and recreation in Amherstburg” and voted in favour.
Councillor Diane Pouget shared Allaire’s safety concerns, believing more than just one side of the hill would have to be groomed to make it proper for youth.“We’re just asking for trouble if one part of the hill is groomed,” said Pouget.
Allaire said she loved the idea but stuck by her position.
“I’m sure it will all work out in good fun, but I stand by my position,” said Allaire.
Allaire and Pouget voted to remove the $25,000 from the budget but Mayor Michael Prue, Deputy Mayor Chris Gibb, McArthur, Crain and Councillor Peter Courtney opted to keep it in the budget.
By Ron Giofu