Like its course, the project to establish a national extreme downhill skating training center at Mont Bellevue appears to have few obstacles. Stakeholders are optimistic, but a conflict emerges at City Hall.
Jean-François Rouleau, councilor of the University District, is categorically opposed to the project that accaparerait track 4 permanently since dirt piles, can also be used to mountain biking in the summer, there would be erected.
“I do not see how one can condemn a track in the mountain after investing $ 1.2 million in a new chairlift. Mount Bellevue belongs to skiers. You should install the track in one end of the mountain, without touching the ski area. ”
According to him, the training center is not part of the mission of the mountain, based on user feedback, is more focused for hiking, skiing and mountain biking.
It is this mission that causes a discrepancy in the City Council since Nicole A. Gagnon, Councillor, District Cross Bright, welcomes with open arms project.
“Our mission is to revitalize the best Mount Bellevue, because we are fortunate to have such a jewel at the center of the city. When such a project valuing it and joined a lot of our citizens, we buy. Every time we presented a project to revitalize the Mont Bellevue, there has never been a people against. Should the project be catastrophic for we do not agree, “says Gagnon.
The two neighbors advisors do not agree even on the opinion of residents about the project. Ms. Gagnon said they had received no opposition from citizens while it’s the opposite for Mr. Rouleau.
“We really need it benefits everyone, athletes and the public”
Upstream of the tidal wave that is coming, Christian Papillon, founder and director of Circus Productions, continues to advance the project.
“The recreational component we did before cutting where amateurs were allowed to learn the sport with coaches went very well. More than 200 people participated. It’s clear that people are interested in the sport. We wanted to ensure that everyone can find pleasure. ”
M. Butterfly can count on the support of Destination Sherbrooke.
“From our side, the will is favorable. The mission of Destination Sherbrooke is tourism. If athletes come with their gang and they stay in area hotels and eat in our restaurants is perfect. Same for people outside who want to try the sport. We really need it benefits everyone, athletes and the public, “says Valérie Laliberté, Communications Coordinator for Destination Sherbrooke.
No one can guarantee the profitability of the training center, but if it were to be established, it would make Sherbrooke a key city on the stage of this emerging sport.
“It would make Sherbrooke a pioneering city in the development of sport because it would be the first in North America to establish a permanent track. Competitors wishing to international refine their technique likely would pass by Sherbrooke, “said M. Butterfly.
The latter is still working on the details such as cohabitation between recreational use and for business use and integration of group classes and friendly races.
“We will return to the final outcome of the project with the City and Destination Sherbrooke and also on our side with our partners. We want to have an approval this summer to put everything in place for next season. Let’s say I’m very optimistic. ”
The City intends to approve the project for the 2016-2017 season.