Canine Commons (Leash Free Dog Park) Upgrades

At General Committee this week, Council had before it, an agenda item that outlined recommendations from the Parks and Rec Committee in regards to the Canine Commons (Leash- free dog park). The recommendations are that staff proceed with capital upgrades and maintenance requirements in 2017 which include improvements to the parking lot, a new fence and entrance gate latch system, and new screened wood chip mulch for the whole park. These items were prioritized and identified by the volunteers of the park. The recommendation to Council is that these items are to be completed in 2017. While it is great that these items will be taken care of immediately, there are still issues with regards to the ongoing maintenance of the park. I have always felt that this park should be maintained at the standard of all Aurora parks – and that requires funding.
The Parks and Rec Committee recommended developing an ongoing maintenance schedule that would be included in the Parks and Rec Operational budget for 2018.
By including the Canine Commons in the operational budget, it would ensure that, moving forward there would be a budget for regular maintenance of the park including the parking lot – monthly grooming , including snow removal and sanding – cutting of the grass around the perimeter of the park as well as the interior of the park and removal of weeds and two applications a year of wood chips. Inclusion of the canine commons in the Parks and Rec operation budget will be part of the 2018 budget discussions.
The recommendation before Council passed unanimously but will still need to be ratified at Council next week. I want to note as well that in addition to the upgrades and maintenance of the park, staff also informed the committee that By-law Services will be attending the park to ensure that all dogs using the leash-free park are licensed, and that any dog without a dog tag will not be allowed in the park; however, owners will have an opportunity to purchase a tag or may be fined.
Ongoing maintenance of this park has been an issue since it opened in 2003. I am pleased that everyone has worked together to get this done.

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8 Responses

  1. I have a question. The town rarely takes care of Lundy Park, so what are the town standards? I think all parks should be maintained not just this near major streets

    1. Hi Teresa, I agree. The Town has a Parks Maintenance Service Level Standards. I will speak to staff about Lundy Park. I will also get the link for the Parks Maintenance Service Level Standard for you…

  2. This is good news, indeed, and I’m looking forward to these improvements. The volunteers at the park deserve recognition for the work that they’ve done over the years to try to keep this dog park clean & tidy. Thanks for the update.

  3. I bring my dog to this park, rather than the Newmarket one, because it is so natural, and she feels very comfortable just doing her own thing… she’s not into rough-housing with other dogs, but being a rescue from a huge shelter (well run, and I’m impressed) in Iran, she visited the Aurora park after only a few days here in Canada, and has a lovely time. So impressed with those who have worked to keep the park in good shape… no complaints from me, I just appreciate my Happy enjoys the freedom, and I’ve met some really nice dog owners there. Thanks to everyone who worked to keep it in good shape, especially Helen Clark :)

  4. I don’t own any animals and I don’t understand why my tax dollars are being spent on a dog park for use by those who choose to own animals. When you own an animal it should be your responsibility in all respects to look after that animal , not expect the general tax payer to provide an area for your animal to run or walk.

  5. William Rogers, if you don’t own a pet, you don’t pay the pet license fees which fund the dog park. Which is one of the reasons why dogs in the leash free park are required to be licensed. So the general tax payer is not paying for the dog park.

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