Hamilton Mountain County John-Paul Danko Proposes $120,000 Rock Climbing Wall at Newlands Park

Hamilton Mountain County John-Paul Danko wants youngsters to be adventurous rather than inside “bubble wrap” when playing in a neighborhood park.

Councilor for Ward 8 is proposing to spend around $120,000 to build a climbing wall in Newlands Park which would be integrated with existing play structures.

“We had, in my opinion, overly sterilized attempts to remove that element or risk,” Danko said during the Jan. 31 public works committee.

He said the climbing structure would encourage children and young people to “understand a bit more risky play” so that “they don’t get wrapped up in bubble wrap”. The benefits are really well documented; to be able to develop risk assessment skills,” he said.

Danko said such a structure is an educational opportunity for children to learn about failure and take initiative. He says it also helps children’s self-esteem.

“It’s something that really excites me,” Danko said. “It’s a well-designed structure. It is also designed to be safe.

Cynthia Graham, manager of the landscape architecture department, assured advisers that the structure would be installed to protect those who use it. A properly rated safety surface, similar to those already in place at play structures across the city, would be constructed, she said. Approximately $60,000 would be used to design and install the structure, including the signs, while the other half of the funding, to be taken from Ward 8’s capital reserve fund, would be used for the safety surface. The annual operating cost would be around $2,500.

“These (climbing walls) are designed to be safe in an unstructured way,” Graham said.

Parks manager Kara Bunn said the wall would be similar in height to other existing play equipment.

“It’s not a huge climbing wall,” she said.

Still, Danko’s public works colleagues were reluctant to approve funding until they saw the design and even photos of a climbing wall project. They wanted to postpone Danko’s motion until the next public works meeting.

“This is obviously new information that I have had in the past,” the Ward 5 Coun said. Russian powers.

Ancaster County Lloyd Ferguson was also hesitant to greenlight the project.

“I don’t know this technology at all,” he said.

Danko, who agreed to wait for the next meeting for approval, said two other neighborhood parks were being considered for the climbing structure, including Buchanan Park at 111 Columbia Dr. and Southam Park at 480 Upper James St. in Claremont. Access.

He said Newlands, located at 137 Lynbrook Dr., was chosen because of its existing circular walking track and exercise equipment.

“It’s something that’s kind of new,” Danko said. “Something that I’m really excited about. It’s a well-designed structure. I’m pretty excited about it.

Virginia F. Goins