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A Ski Hill on Mount Royal?

A Ski Hill on Mount Royal? / Ville de Montréal

Could the road on Mount Royal become a ski hill one day?

In the wake of last week’s tragic accident on Camilien-Houde, an outpouring of emotional tributes has taken place in Montreal. Cyclists and citizens of Montreal have also been tossing around ideas about how the city could change the Camilien-Houde roadway that crosses Mount Royal in order to avoid further cycling accidents.

Many have suggested traffic be restricted on the mountain passage; others advocated for bike paths to be installed, and some people even want the city to forbid motor vehicle traffic altogether!

Of all the ideas that have been suggested since this debate started, this one may be the most unusual. Blogger Anton Dubrau has suggested the city could install a ski hill on Camilien-Houde! The resulting hill would snake down the East side of Mount Royal, finishing near the park.

A comparative chart created by Mr. Dubrau shows that far from being too short, Mount Royal is actually the perfect size and shape to install a beginner ski hill on its slope.


It’s also a very gentle slope (notice the green colour). Its 8.5% gradient would be perfect for beginner skiers, making it a family-friendly attraction.

Mr. Dubrau also suggests a way to accommodate city buses and ski shuttles by reserving just enough space for two lanes of traffic beside the ski area. Check out his illustration:


This setup would allow buses to go up and down Camilien-Houde while still reserving plenty of space for skiers!

Mr. Dubrau isn’t the first person to have thought of having a ski hill on Mount Royal. In fact, the University of Montreal had a ski hill on its campus for many years, from 1944 to 1979. Complete with a lift line and multiple slopes, it was a fantastic spot for winter sports.


Source: Archives de l'université de Montréal

What do you think of this audacious plan? Would it be feasible? Granted, it’s a long shot, but we think the idea is really cool (no pun intended!).

Visit the Catbus blog for more about maps, transit ideas and implementations:

All images from reused with permission.

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