New trail groomer for Killarney Lake Park

The City of Fredericton is moving ahead with plans to buy a trail groomer for Killarney Lake Park.

Council approved the purchase during its regular meeting Monday night.

After the meeting, Coun. Steven Hicks said the $235,000 piece of equipment is needed.

"We've been grooming our trails with two snowmobiles, which isn't ideal," said Hicks, "and as we're growing the Killarney Lake network for cross-country skiing, we need the proper equipment to do that, especially if we want to attract people to our city to participate in cross-country skiing and grow the sport locally."

As part of the agreement, the Wostawea Cross-Country Ski Club has agreed to commit $50,000 over five years towards the purchase of the equipment.

Dylan Gamble, director of engineering and operations, said the groomer is a better piece of equipment than what they currently have and is much safer for the operator.

"Right now we're hauling groomers behind the snowmobiles, so the snowmobiles get stuck, you've got this massive groomer, it's really tough on the staff right now," he said.

"We've added six kilometres [of trail] this year and we're adding another four kilometres this summer, so right now it's really hard to keep up with the equipment we have right now."

Gamble said the goal is to have the groomer in service for next winter.