'Ruining Christmas': Family told to take down hockey rink after neighbour complains
Mike Arsalides, CTV Ottawa
Published Sunday, December 16, 2018 6:05PM EST
Last Updated Sunday, December 16, 2018 6:06PM EST
An Ottawa family that has for years built an outdoor hockey rink on its front lawn for the neighbourhood children to enjoy is being forced to take it down after a neighbour complained, calling it an eyesore and alleging that it violates city bylaws.
Cory Cosgrove, who built the rink for his three daughters, said he was initially told by a city bylaw officer that the boards of the rink were on city property, so he moved them back.
Nevertheless, a bylaw officer returned this week to tell the Cosgroves that the boards of the rink will have to come down.
“They say there’s not much they can do as far as having a slab of ice on your front yard for the kids to play on, but the structure itself is the issue,” Cosgrove told CTV Ottawa.
The neighbour who complained told CTV Ottawa that the Cosgroves never consulted with her before putting up the walls.
Many other neighbours say they have no problem with the rink.
“I guess the Grinch is out,” said Greg Hill, a parent and neighbour. “We always talk about wanting kids to get outside more and have fun and this is how they do it. And if people have a problem with this sort of thing, it’s a shame that they can’t do it.”
In response to outcry on social media, Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson said that he has asked his staff to review the Cosgrove case.
“We are a hockey nation and what can be wrong with playing hockey in your own backyard?” he tweeted.
That’s welcome news for the Cosgrove girls, who may lose the ice rink on Monday if no solution is reached with the city.
Asked what she’d say to those who want to see the rink gone, Emma Cosgrove said: “You’re ruining my Christmas.”
I have asked senior staff to review this. We are a hockey nation and what can be wrong with playing hockey in your own backyard? I hope to have more information tomorrow to solve this so called problem!— Jim Watson (@JimWatsonOttawa) December 16, 2018