Wednesday, June 1, 2011

New off-leash areas proposed

Having a long leash is nice, having no leash is even better and for the approximately 122,325 dogs and their owners in the city, having a place to run, play and meet others is an important component in their quality of life.    

That's a big reason why The City of Calgary Parks will be meeting with Calgarians this month to talk about adding three new off-leash areas as well as fully fencing an existing off-leash site. Areas like these can help to minimize conflicts between dog owners and other parks users as well as increasing safety for animals while they enjoy some public playtime.

New off-leash sites are proposed in Martindale, West Hillhurst and Meadowlark Park. Fully fencing an existing off-leash area in Falconridge is also proposed.

"No decisions or funding commitments have been made about whether or not these off-leash initiatives will be implemented." said Parks Communication Consultant, Dennis Urquhart. "The first step in the process is to gather community feedback and gauge the level of stakeholder support."

In 2008, Council directed Administration to improve management of off-leash areas. As part of this work, off-leash area service gaps and opportunities for enhancement were identified across the city. In total, 19 potential new off-leash areas (including eight sites that could potentially be fully fenced) and 15 existing sites that could be fully fenced were identified. As well, The City of Calgary Parks recently created an Off-leash Area Management Plan (OLAMP) to provide consistent guidelines for the operation of Calgary’s current 149 off-leash areas.
 
At the open houses this month, Calgarians can get information and provide feedback about the proposed new and fenced off-leash areas. City staff will be in attendance to answer questions. Citizens will also be able to submit electronic feedback forms from June 6 until June 28 via the web at www.calgary.ca/offleash.

Dates and times for the four new/fenced off-leash sites being discussed this month are:

Martindale
Proposed new off-leash area: Martha's Haven Park (751 Martindale Blvd. N.E.)
Falconridge
Two gates are proposed to fence the existing off-leash area adjacent to Falwood Way and 68 Street N.E. (220 Falwood Way N.E.)
  • Open House, Tuesday, June 7, 7 - 9 p.m. Falconridge/Castleridge Community Association, 95 Falshire Dr. N.E.
West Hillhurst
Proposed new off-leash area: north of Memorial Drive between 21 Street and 23 Street N.W.
  • Open House: Thursday, June 9, 6 - 8:30 p.m. Main Gym, West Hillhurst Community Association, 1940 6 Ave. N.W.
Meadowlark Park
Proposed new off leash area: just north of Glenmore Trail , between Elbow Drive and 5 Street S.W.
  • Open House: Tuesday, June 14, 6 - 8:30 p.m. Meadowlark Park Community Association, 623 58 Ave. S.W.
For more information on off-leash areas and existing locations in Calgary, please visit www.calgary.ca/offleash.

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