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In reference to the latest Nealon Park/Dog Park recommendations

From: domainremoved <Gwen>
Date: Fri, 18 Dec 2015 20:37:53 +0000

In reference to the latest Nealon Park/Dog Park recommendations cited here:http://menlopark.org/DocumentCenter/View/8960

Currently, there is the one dedicated dog park at Willow Oaks, which is too small, on the periphery of town, and lacks reasonable parking (less than 10 spaces) and is co-located next to a playground and tennis courts. Most importantly Willow Oaks dog park is not centrally located to downtown. Most of the current apartments and condos are downtown. Many of us walk our dogs to Nealon Park. If the city wants more population density, which it obviously does as visible by all the lot splitting and plans to build more dense towering residential buildings on El Camino, it needs to keep an off-leash dog park dedicated or shared in the center of the population density. 

The only reasonable alternative at Nealon Park for the development of a dedicated dog park is to join and re-balance all of the available open grassy areas and re-route the pathway. The large grassy area next to the playground MUST be included in developing the dedicated dog park. It MUST NOT be taken out of consideration. Other than the ball field, it is the ONLY open space area at Nealon Park large enough to throw balls and let dogs run.

It is an absolutely stupid waste of city money to consider building a new dedicated "off-leash dog recreation area" that is too small again. The current morning usage averages 25-50 dogs. If the soon to be proposed dedicated  "off-leash dog recreation area" cannot accommodate running around and throwing a ball with a chuck-it, as is provided today, it will be an absolutely stupid waste of city money, and a waste of valuable property. 
Lyle Park is one block away and is bigger than the "removed from consideration “open/green space” near the playground" area at Nealon Park. It is already a proven and open sports, play and picnic field. And there are already picnic tables and a playground installed.

The deteriorating condition of the baseball field at Nealon Park and the drought, prove the existing field is already a structural mess, unrelated to the dogs. The existing irrigation system is broken/leaking and archaic, the field is prone to flooding and standing water, and the grass area is large and needs to be cut often. With the drought, it also requires lots of watering to stay green. The City issued a March 25, 2015 memo regarding Sports Field Water Conservation- it mandates that field irrigation systems be fixed and water not be used to wash fields (e.g. wash off dog urine and poop). 

Considering that most of the use of Nealon ball field happens at dusk/night, and since La Entrada is already being redeveloped, use the $250K to put lights at La Entrada baseball field instead, and make the existing baseball field dog ONLY.  This saves the money required for rebuilding the irrigation system and developing a new fenced area for dogs only. The surface can be changed to something more low maintenance and dog-friendly, or left as is, which also saves money. Dirt is fine for dogs. 

Your serious consideration about this issue is appreciated,Gwen Golub
Received on Fri Dec 18 2015 - 12:43:33 PST

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