Sled trail ap­proved in park

City coun­cil agrees to com­pro­mise, cre­at­ing a cor­ri­dor al­low­ing snow­mo­biles to cross Hollinger Park.

The Daily Press (Timmins) - - FRONT PAGE - LEN GIL­LIS

snow­mo­bil­ers will be al­lowed to skirt around hollinger Park this win­ter in an ef­fort to keep rogue sled­ders from ru­in­ing the sk8te hollinger skat­ing track.

Tim­mins city coun­cil this week adopted a com­pro­mise to al­low the snow­mo­biles to travel along the perime­ter of the park which will en­able sled­ders to reach the shell gaso­line sta­tion on algonquin Boule­vard.

There is al­ready a trail in place, which in­cludes cross­ing the On­tario north­land over­pass, to reach the esso ser­vice sta­tion, lo­cated di­rectly across the road from the shell.

“With the ad­di­tion of the sk8te hollinger and ex­tra use we are see­ing in park over the win­ter­time, it has be­come an is­sue that has drawn a lot of at­ten­tion,” said the mayor.

he said there had been a stated is­sue that many snow­mo­bil­ers wanted to ac­cess the shell sta­tion.

snow­mo­bile club ex­ec­u­tive mem­ber Marc la­palme said he was told the rea­son is that shell of­fers gaso­line with­out the com­mon ethanol ad­di­tive.

ethanol, which is part of most reg­u­lar gaso­line mix­tures, is re­garded as less than ideal for some snow­mo­bile en­gines.

The mayor said the Tim­mins snow­mo­bile Club of­fered to work with the city to set up a des­ig­nated route, which would be de­fined by a groom­ing ma­chine, so sled­ders could get a route to buy the gaso­line of their choice.

“i think when you look at what our city is largely about and en­joy­ing the great qual­ity of life that we have and the out­door recre­ation, i think this is a po­ten­tially great part­ner­ship to re­solve an is­sue,” said Black.

The city has de­cided to cre­ate a spe­cific cor­ri­dor run­ning north-south along Brunette road, and then an east-west cor­ri­dor along algonquin Boule­vard from Brunette through to the shell sta­tion.

The cor­ri­dor it­self will be con­tained by an or­ange snow fence on both sides. One side will pro­tect side­walk pedes­tri­ans along algonquin, while the fenc­ing on the other side is de­signed to pro­tect skaters in the park and keep the sleds from veer­ing off into the park area.

One of those who com­mented on the plan was sk8te hollinger cre­ator Ken Pye. he is the same man who ini­ti­ated the com­plaints of snow­mo­biles rid­ing il­le­gally through the hollinger Park in the first place.

he said his real pref­er­ence was to have no sleds at all come any­where near the park. it was men­tioned that the OFSC (On­tario Fed­er­a­tion of snow­mo­bile Clubs) has an ac­cess trail from the south side of the city that brings snow­mo­bil­ers along the old Onr roadbed to the esso sta­tion.

“up un­til ba­si­cally yes­ter­day i re­ally thought this was a great idea to come in here and make this trail. But i have had time to think about this and i don’t think its re­ally … well i would not sup­port this trail,” Pye told coun­cil.

at this point the mayor jumped back into the dis­cus­sion and asked for clar­i­fi­ca­tion, say­ing if coun­cil wants to put a trail in to the park, would this be the best lo­ca­tion. “yes, yes, ab­so­lutely,” said Pye. “Thank you,” said the mayor. Pye said he would pre­fer a sin­gle fence in­stead of a dou­ble fence for the safety route. he said an­other worry is that some sled­ders may use the new ac­cess route to go to the shell and then cross four lanes of algonquin to get to the esso, in­stead of dou­bling back to ac­cess the OFSC trail.

Pye also said there are many skaters who like to cut across the park to ac­cess the Tim hor­tons cof­fee shop.

Black said if nec­es­sary, ar­range­ments could be made to cre­ate pedes­trian ac­cess through the dou­ble fence.

Black also called for a com­ment from Tim­mins po­lice chief John Gau­thier who said the traf­fic sec­tion likes the pro­posal for the safety cor­ri­dor.

“We looked at it. it is the pro­posal that makes the most sense to me for a cou­ple of rea­sons,” said the chief, who added that he likes the idea that the cor­ri­dor will be con­tained by fenc­ing.

“What you don’t want to do is mix snow­mo­biles with pedes­tri­ans, or snow­mo­biles with cars and trucks,” said Gau­thier. “From a purely pub­lic safety stand­point and en­force­ment, it is prob­a­bly a lot eas­ier for us to go with this op­tion, but again, it is coun­cil’s de­ci­sion.”

Coun. Joe Campbell wanted to hold off and re­view the by­law change un­til next week. Campbell said he wanted more time to con­sider the pro­posal and look into the claims about the dif­fer­ent types of gaso­line.

Campbell put up a mo­tion to de­fer the by­law. The mayor called for a vote. Coun­cil­lors Campbell, rick dubeau and Wal­ter Wawrza­szek voted in favour of de­fer­ring for an­other week.

Coun­cil­lors Pat Bam­ford, Mike doody, Veron­ica Far­rell, andrew Marks, noella ri­naldo and the mayor re­jected the de­fer­ral.

The vot­ing was the same when coun­cil de­cided to cre­ate the new ac­cess route at the park.

in view of coun­cil’s de­ci­sion to cre­ate the safety cor­ri­dor, the mayor asked for coun­cil’s con­sent to have the city sup­ply the snow fenc­ing for the park perime­ter.

Coun­cil agreed.


City coun­cil has agreed that set­ting up a safety cor­ri­dor for snow­mo­biles around the perime­ter of Hollinger Park is a suit­able com­pro­mise to let sled­ders get eas­ier ac­cess to buy gaso­line for their sleds. The city and the Tim­mins Snow­mo­bile Club will be work­ing this week to cre­ate a nar­row cor­ri­dor, fenced in on both sides, to al­low sled­ders to ride along the edge of the park.

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