Beaconsfield snow fort cannot stand, security tells Yann Lefebvre

One Beaconsfield man's snow fort has become the subject of a heated argument with the city.

Giant snow fort is unsafe and must be dismantled, Beaconsfield public security and mayor say

Yann Lefebvre said he intentionally built an open-air snow fort so that he could keep an eye on the kids while they were playing in the fort. (Submitted by Yann Lefebvre)

It started off as a fun winter project for Yann Lefebvre's four young children.

“At the beginning of winter I told my kids I would build them the fort of all forts."

He decked it out with two snow couches, a snow coffee table and some discarded Christmas trees, much to the delight of his own children as well as the neighbourhood kids.

But what was supposed to be a source of enjoyment has turned into a pain for the Beaconsfield man.

"It's blowing up into this ridiculous argument with the city. I don’t know where to begin. I’m flabbergasted," Lefebvre told CBC Daybreak on Thursday.

Tear down that fort

Municipal security agents informed Lefebvre's wife in early January that the fort was blocking snowplows and needed to be torn down. Since then, he said his home has been visited by public works employees on several occasions.

Lefebvre said he made sure to build the snow fort at least a couple feet from the edge of his property.

"If you look at some pictures, I think it’s a short three feet," said Beaconsfield mayor Georges Bourelle.

Besides, he said, city property technically extends six feet from the edge of the street and so the fort is on city property.

"We’re not against snow forts," Bourelle said, adding he's concerned about safety.

"A snow plow going by will definitely hit it  because it's too close, and if there's a kid behind it — that's a tragedy to come."

Bourelle said if the fort was further from the road or in the back yard, then the town would be all for it.

"It's fun. I enjoyed it too when I was young but it has to be done in a safe environment."

Lefebvre thinks the town is overreacting, and he's also tired of all the fuss over his creation.

"I'mkind of tired of fighting the city over this and having all these negative comments on Facebook or Twitter," Lefebvre said.

He says he's having a party Saturday to dismantle the fort and rebuild it on his property, further back from the road — and the mayor's invited.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.