Committee approves study of potential options to make Mooney's Bay Park safe for sledding

A graphic with Ottawa City Hall is in the background. A vertical grey stripe and a horizontal purple stripe are in the foreground with "Community Services Committee " in the centre.

The City’s Community Services Committee today approved hiring an external consultant to study potential options to make Mooney’s Bay Park hill(link is external) safer for snow sledding. 

Council asked staff in 2022 to investigate options to modify the hill to make it safe to reopen to sledders. It has been removed from the list of approved sledding hills since 2017, when it was deemed unsafe following multiple accidents and injuries. After a child tragically died while sledding on the hill in 2021, the City put more signs and fencing in place to warn of the danger and prevent sledding, as well as protective measures like padding and hay bales, but the hill is still too dangerous for sledding due to its size, slope and many collision hazards. 

Several reviews have shown that the hill cannot be reopened safely for sledding unless the hill and surrounding areas are physically altered to remove hazards. The City would allocate up to $150,000 to hire an engineering and landscape architect to assess the feasibility of altering the hill and to develop a concept with preliminary costs. Staff would report back with the results of the study and recommendations for further action and funding. 

Any potential solution would need to address the known collision hazard between sledders and cross-country skiers, and consider the many other activities residents enjoy at the hill year-round, such as cross-country running events and boot camps. The City would also need the approval of the National Capital Commission, the owner of the park, before changes could be made to the hill. 

Until the current safety issues are resolved, the City will continue to prohibit sledding and to fence off the hill to prevent access in winter. People who continue to sled on Mooney’s Bay hill face the risk of serious injury, or of injuring others. Residents can find safer places to sled nearby using the City’s interactive map of approved hills, plus tips for safer sledding at

This item will rise to Council on Wednesday, May 1. 

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Address: 110 Laurier Ave W, Ottawa, ON K1P 1J1