City Hall gets a zip line (for a limited time)
What's high strung, a little dangerous, and flies across Nathan Phillips Square at 30 km/h? Points if the name of a city councillor came to mind, but I would have also accepted a temporary zip line strung between the towers of City Hall and Queen Street.
Every day until November 24, the day before the Grey Cup, visitors to City Hall can pay $20 to be strapped to a pulley and walked off the end of a metal gantry built over the roof of the clamshell, the circular building in the centre of the municipal complex. The pay off is a thrilling ride and a great view of Nathan Phillips Square.
The 130 feet tall ride is the tallest urban zip line in North America and was set up as part of the10-day 100th Grey Cup Festival. A street party and film festival at Yonge-Dundas Square theatres are also part of the program. The net proceeds from the zip line will go to the Argos' charitable foundations.
Once you've signed your life away with a waiver, the zip line staff buckle you into a harness, give you a helmet, and send you up a temporary metal tower. At the top, you're clipped into a pulley with a safety line in case, you know, something breaks. The most unnerving part is walking off the end of a set of stairs to get started. The last step is about 13 floors above the ground.
The ride itself is pretty brief (about 20 seconds) but you do get a chance to see the roof of the council chamber, an expansive view of Nathan Phillips Square, and a unique perspective of the buildings in the financial district. Oh, and watch out for the end - it's a little bumpy...
If you prefer to get your adrenaline fix from the comfort of home, here's a surprisingly expletive-free video of my trip down the wire taken from a helmet mounted camera:
ZIP LINE HOURS:
Photos: Tom Ryaboi
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