Controversy Surrounds Toronto City Council’s Tobogganing Ban

Controversy Surrounds Toronto City Council’s Tobogganing Ban

Toronto City Council’s recent decision to prohibit tobogganing on 45 local hills due to safety concerns has sparked anger among residents.

Warning signs have been erected, directing enthusiasts to a designated website outlining the city’s 29 approved toboggan hills across 27 parks.

Safety Concerns and Restriction Signs:

Numerous signs placed at popular spots, like East Lynn Park, explicitly state the prohibition of tobogganing, citing potential hazards such as trees, stumps, rocks, rivers, or roads.

The city council justifies this move by emphasizing the safety risks associated with these hills and directs people to alternative, approved locations.

City councilor Brad Bradford, a toboggan enthusiast himself, criticizes the decision, asserting that it reinforces Toronto’s ‘no-fun’ reputation.

He likens it to past attempts to ban street hockey and expresses embarrassment, emphasizing that winter tobogganing is an integral part of the Canadian experience.

Public Discontent and Disregard for Signs:

Residents, who have been complaining about the signs for about a month, express frustration, with Bradford stating that the move may make people cynical about Toronto becoming a ‘no-fun city.’

Some believe the signs won’t deter tobogganers, asserting that individuals should be allowed to make their own decisions, understanding the associated risks.

Bradford disapproves of enforcing compliance through bylaw officers, predicting potential negative consequences and a national backlash if the city takes such measures.

City’s Toboggan Hill Inspection Program:

Toronto City Council initiated a toboggan hill inspection program in 2017, assessing popular hills for safety hazards.

The council’s statement defends its decision, stating that East Lynn Park was deemed unsafe due to permanent obstacles like a staircase, wading pool, field house building, light poles, and trees.


As the controversy unfolds, residents express their determination to continue tobogganing despite the warnings.

Concerns are raised about the impact of liability fears on modern childhood experiences, with one mother lamenting the decline of this beloved winter activity.