Ottawa, Montreal or Toronto?

The three cities have very different models for their outdoor rinks.

Toronto has the most expensive infrastructure, with 51 outdoor compressor-cooled rinks, which means they have a much longer season than we do. Each rink has its own ice-resurfacer and a family-friendly rink clubhouse with all the facilities.

Montreal rinks are built upon grass like Ottawa, but most of the maintenance is done by City workers with mobile zambonis and water trucks that show up several times a day.

Ottawa rinks have the least expensive infrastructure – no compressors or zambonis here! – but also the most community involvement, which means that it’s possible to have more rinks within walking distance for neighbourhood kids and residents.

When the Ottawa model works – there’s nothing better!

When the Ottawa model doesn’t work – everyone loses.

Here’s another comparison of the Ottawa and Montreal models.

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