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The Communicator NEWS & POLITICS

Department of Parks and Recreation can begin construction on new dog park

Written by: Communicator StaffDecember 20, 2014

Justin Dials

The Fort Wayne City Council gave permission for the Department of Parks and Recreation to begin construction on a new dog park during the Dec. 16 meeting.

The park will be located in the Johnny Appleseed Park, between H. Baals Drive and the St. Joseph River.  This will be the second dog park in Fort Wayne run by the Department of Parks and Recreation, the other being Pawster Park located in Foster Park West on Winchester Road.  Park Director Al Moll stated that we need a second park because, “We’ve had requests for (a) second one in the Northern part of the city since the day we opened up the one in the southern part of the city.”

The park will be broken into two 30,000 square foot sections and will feature a sheltered patio as well as drinking fountains and hydrants for the dogs.  The park will also be tied into the trail system.  A name for the park has not yet been decided.

The cost of the park is estimated to be $154,199 and Moll is hoping to open by mid-year of 2015.  Pawster Park brings in an annual revenue $14,000, but that is expected to increase to more than $20,000 dollars a year with the addition of the new park.  Maintenance of the park will be paid for in full out of a reserve account set aside by the park revenue.

Annual passes for access to the park will cost $40 and will allow access to the new park in addition to Pawster Park on the southern side of town. People staying at the Johnny Appleseed Campground can also pay a small additional daily fee for use of the dog park. This park is expected to be especially useful during the dog shows that take place at the War Memorial coliseum, since the Johnny Appleseed Park is located right next to the coliseum.

Anyone who wants a pass will be required to show proof that their dogs have all of their vaccinations.  Dogs that behave aggressively or bark excessively will be removed from the park.

Since the park is being built on a flood plain, it must be built with break-away fencing so as to not inhibit water flow in the event of a flood.

No plans for a third park are in the works yet, but Moll said that he is sure that they will be asked to build one as soon as this one is opened. Possible places for a third park according to Moll are Shoaff Park and Salomon Park.