By Geghard ARAKELIAN
Attendees shared mixed feelings as some vigorously stated their concerns while proponents sighed at complaints aimed at the schematics of the park.
Those who vehemently back the plans for the park argue that dog owners need a place where they can play with their pets without leashing them.
“There are a lot of parks that are available to use but there’s no off-leash access. And as you know, it’s illegal to run your dog off leash. We just don’t have the access for it,” said John Klose, president of CV Dogs.
Yet one local spoke to the contrary.
“I disagree with the way they’re doing this dog park. They’re not giving us much land for one. They’re putting us up right next to the street which is not a good idea because of the traffic,” said Brad Ellickson. “Don’t get me wrong … I want to see a good dog park. One that has some grass in it for the dogs to play on instead of gravel and wood.”
According to county officials, the 1.5 acre park, which will be developed along Honolulu Avenue adjacent to CV Park and will feature decomposed granite for turf and chipped cedar wood.
The materials were chosen “for cost reasons, for sustainable reasons to keep away from high water usage materials” said Susan Pearson, Department Facilities Planner for L.A County Parks & Recreation. “And it seems to be the standard for dog parks right now, decomposed granite and cedar wood chips.”
Along with concerns about the parks make up, community members also expressed a concern about parking, park safety and park policing.
“They have valid concerns but I think that we can mitigate. You know I think there’s ways we can reduce these problems” said Klose.
According to officials, the park will be fenced off and will have two separate sections for small and large breeds of dogs.
An official of the Sheriff’s department also reassured attendees that the area would be effectively policed.
“The L.A County Sheriff’s Department has recently taken over or merged with what used to be the Office of Public Safety. So we’ve basically taken over that department. We bring with that all the resources that the Sheriff’s department has at their disposal,” said Sgt. John Caffrey of the L.A County Sheriff’s Department. “So the parks in all of L.A County are now policed by the sheriff’s department. So they have the same resources whether that be additional officers [or] helicopter support.”
Though county officials could not come up with a solution for parking displacement they did speculate during the presentation that if parking could not be found patrons could resort to finding spots on residential streets.
County officials hope that the $300,000 park will be open a year from June. The dog park will share the same hours of operation as CV Park.