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  • Writer's pictureRhonda Massad

Residents enraged:Kirkland shuts down play equipment in parks

Social media pages blew up in recent days as the playground equipment at Harris Park was deemed unsafe to play on during the winter months by the Town of Kirkland. The first time in history.

According to one follower of the Kirkland Citizen's Association Facebook page, her children have been playing on the equipment at Harris Park for the past 4 years every winter.

"For the 1st time in 36 years has Harris park ever had a sign saying closed for the winter," one enraged resident posted. "During a pandemic when there’s nothing indoors to do, why the hell would you close a park?! Parks are just as fun in the winter!! And I will add, up to the parents if they find it’s unsafe for their children to play! My kids have been playing in this park for 4 years every winter. I played in this park growing up on much less safe jungle gyms. This is ridiculous!"

Another resident claims the city had a private firm evaluate the situation and declared the snow covered base of the area was not suitable for safe play.

"They had an ‘independent firm’ gage the security of parks and deem it unsafe. Supposedly due to the material on the ground being frozen and not as safe ( forget the fact there is snow covering it.) No one on council has children under the age of 17,nor are there any advisory groups geared to that age group or the next for that matter. The worse part is it’s our tax dollars paying for firms to come check and shut down what minimal activities are set up."

There is good news, Kirkland appears to be the only city to declare the park equipment as unfit for winter play. One follower posted having a great experience in Pierrefonds where the equipment was safe and sound at Grier Park. Even tobogganing was permitted!

"I walked through Grier park in Pierrefonds today - kids are tobogganing down slopes, playing on the play structures (all open and swings still up and hockey and skating is going on at the same time at the rink) was a great community spirit, no issues! so great to see."

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