The design and budgeting for an off-leash dog park in Greater Trail was put on hold at Trail’s Governance and Operations Committee meeting Sept. 27.
With the culmination of an online and public engagement process, WSP Canada Inc. provided the city with a “What we heard report,” initiating the next step of creating a detailed design and budget.
The city’s online dog park survey was open to the public from July 19 to Aug. 23, and asked residents to vote on one of four pre-determined sites for an off-leash dog park.
Participants were asked to choose their top two locations and 699 voted for the green space at Gyro Park (between the Sk8 Park and the main park), while 557 votes went to Centennial Park in Glenmerry, 499 for McBride St. Park, and 387 for Bear Creek Park.
“Staff is supporting the recommendation that we look at the development of the dog park at Gyro Park based on the votes recieved from the respondents to the online survey,” said Chris McIsaac, public works director. “So now we’re requesting council approval to proceed with the design and budget development for that location.”
A total of 911 people responded to the survey, with 88 per cent of those in favour of a dog park in Trail.
However, Coun. Robert Cacchioni questioned the location saying, “I don’t think that’s a particularly good spot to tell you the honest to God truth.
“Down below, the boat ramp down there would be reasonable thing in Gyro Park, but that’s putting another thing in Gyro Park, plus you’re going to have competition for spaces for the Sk8 Park and the dog park.”
Coun. Carol Dobie was concerned with maintenance and the absence of supervision, as McIsaac confirmed that no city employee would be on site.
Coun. Colleen Jones made a motion for staff to further review their options, and review the top three locations.
“If we get staff to further review, and I’m suggesting the top three locations from the survey, to see if there’s a better place or better opportunity for the dog park, prior to completing a detailed design.
“Clearly we’re not comfortable with Gyro Park.”
Survey participants were also asked to choose alternative locations not provided in the survey. Tadanac Park received 49 votes, Pople Park 38, Beaver Creek Park 33, while Sunningdale received 30 votes, Upper Sunningdale, 21, and Bingay Bay 20.
Park maintenance also proved the greatest concern for survey participants, followed by parking, dog/owner amenities, and signage and regulations.
Coun. Sandy Santori also suggested sending a notification of intent to neighbouring property owners to gauge their response to building a nearby dog park.
The committee unanimously moved that staff review the top three locations with the intent of apprising the neighbourhood of the project.