Buried at the “tail-end” of five hours of city meetings on September 6th was a resolution for the Halleck-Beach Dog Park. A project that had just been an idea for several years but was recently buoyed by a community petition initiated by The E’ville Eye. Through community pressure and reader support, the project was adopted into the five-year Capital Improvement Program and moved from the partially funded to the fully funded column. Architect John Cahalan of JCL Architects presented plans that evening to transform the 12,000 square feet blighted space into a community asset.
The space would be divided into “small” and “large” dog park spaces by an existing cement path that bisects the strip underneath the 40th/Shellmound bridge. Council was generally very receptive of the plan and approved the resolution 4-0 (Mayor Martinez being absent). Feedback on the plans included widening the pedestrian path to better accommodate bikes and the addition of landscaping on the western end.
Our presentation to City Council and the Public Art Committee with recommendations can be viewed below on SlideShare:
Next steps according to Public Works Director Maurice Kaufman is to draft the Maintenance & Operational agreement with the City of Oakland where the space technically exists. Representatives of the City of Oakland including D3 council member Lynette Gibson Mcelhaney have already expressed support for the project.
Timetable for the project’s completion is still said to be 12-18 months but new lighting is already in the works and should help provide better visibility. The space still presents some challenges in regards to drainage, addressing the taper of the bridge and the safety of the adjacent dirt path that connects Halleck to 40th street.
The E’ville Eye has also presented and received input from the Emeryville Public Art Committee on the addition of a mural on the columns of the bridge. The art of LA-based Septerhed was well-received and he has verbally agreed to take on the assignment pending a crowdfunding project. Septerhed has previously completed a Dog Park mural in the Los Angeles Arts District.
In addition, the city has announced that it is the recipient of a $25K grant from PetSafe to buoy the efforts. PetSafe identifies itself as the world’s leader in containment, training, and lifestyle solutions to give pet owners more great moments with their pets.
* Please note that the October 1st Emeryville Community Services and PetSafe “Pawject Runway” event has been postponed to a future date *
Emeryville Receives $25,000 Grant to Help Build an Off-Leash Dog Park
Emeryville one of Five Western cities awarded funding through PetSafe® Bark for Your Park™ program.
After nearly three years of planning and advocating, building a local dog park is now becoming a reality for the community of Emeryville, which was just awarded $25,000 through the PetSafe® Brand Bark for Your Park™ program. Emeryville is one of 25 cities nationwide that was selected to receive funding to build an off-leash dog park through this year’s Bark for Your Park grant-giving program. Emeryville was one of five western U.S. cities to be awarded one of the nationwide grants.
With a workforce once made up of primarily industrial and manufacturing jobs, the city of Emeryville—a small community with a population of less than 12,000—is now home to a large biotech and software sector, dotted with retail and high-density housing developments. The idea for a dog park came from members of the community who lack adequate space—in the heavily urbanized East Bay area—to walk and run their canine friends. The project was proposed to the city council and approved in 2014, but, unfortunately, the need to complete other projects and budget shortfalls have left the dog park unfunded.
“Residents are currently forced to walk their dogs on narrow city sidewalks where they don’t always feel safe and have nowhere for their furry companions to interact and play with one another,” said Carolyn Lehr, City Manager of the City of Emeryville. “Thanks to the PetSafe Bark for Your Park grant, we can now fulfill the need for a safe, open space for dogs and their owners to enjoy in Emeryville’s increasingly urban environment.”
The new PetSafe dog park will be located at the 4000 block of Beach Street, near Halleck Street, under the 40th Street overpass. The site intersects a high pedestrian traffic area and a major bicycle corridor that links the cities of Emeryville and Oakland.
“We’re touched by the city of Emeryville’s dedication and commitment to ensuring all of its residents and their canine companions have access to a place where they can socialize and play within their community,” said Willie Wallace, CEO of Radio Systems® Corporation, makers of the PetSafe Brand. “We’re honored to support Emeryville in its mission to create a safe, off-leash dog park that the community will enjoy for years to come.”
PetSafe Brand developed and launched the nationwide Bark for Your Park program in 2011 to help communities build their own off-leash dog parks. This year, PetSafe Brand restructured the contest into a grant-giving program and increased the number of awards from five to 25, with five communities—including Emeryville—receiving $25,000 for new dog parks, 10 communities receiving $10,000 park upgrade awards and 10 communities receiving $5,000 park maintenance awards. Recipients will be awarded a combination of funds as well as commercial-grade dog park equipment from UltraSite™, a PlayCore company.
Emeryville is one of five communities in the Western region to receive a grant through the PetSafe Bark for Your Park program. Bozeman, Mont. and Bremerton, Wash. received $10,000 grants to upgrade their local dog parks, while Union City, Calif. and Cottage Grove, Ore. both received $5,000 grants for park maintenance. For a list of all Bark for Your Park grant recipients announced to date, please visit www.petsafe.net/barkforyourpark.
About the PetSafe® Brand
PetSafe® Brand is an industry leader in the development of innovative pet behavioral, containment and lifestyle product solutions. PetSafe Brand is owned by Radio Systems® Corporation and headquartered in Knoxville, Tenn. For more information, please visit www.petsafe.net or connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.
UltraSite™, a PlayCore company, manufactures high-quality commercial grade dog park equipment that is based on popular agility obstacles and designed for dogs of all sizes, abilities and confidence levels. For more information, please visit www.dogparkproduct.com.