Where should we build Hamilton’s first fenced dog exercise area?
Our great river city has over 12,000 registered dogs – and they need safe spaces to exercise and play. We're building a new fenced dog exercise area and we're looking for community views on where it should be.
The new space will be approximately one hectare of green space where dogs can run and play, whichever park is chosen. The fenced area needs to be in a park that is already an off-leash area and has existing infrastructure such as off-street parking and toilets.
We're proposing to build the new fenced dog exercise area in one of three Hamilton parks and we asked for your feedback.
Your feedback will be presented to the Council's Community Committee at its 29 September meeting.
Once a decision is made construction should begin within a few weeks of that date, depending on the outcome of the meeting.
Designed to blend
We'll choose natural materials and native planting to make sure the new area fits in with the surrounding park.
What is a fenced dog exercise area?
It is a space within an existing off-leash dog exercise area where owners can confidently let their dogs off lead, knowing they can only run within the bounds of the fenced space. The Council committed to construction of the new area through adoption of the Pooches in Parks Plan in 2014.
Why is Council re-consulting on this?
In February-March 2019, we asked dog owners which of three locations they preferred for Hamilton's first fenced dog exercise area. Based on that feedback, Innes Common was the preferred option. Unfortunately, following discussions with neighbouring residents and the wider community, we discovered the site was not suitable. We are now engaging more widely with more supporting information.
Why do we need another area for dogs and their owners?
Dog owners have been asking for a fenced area specially for exercising dogs. Fenced dog exercise areas provide dogs and their owners with greater security. They are exercise areas where dogs can be let off their leash but remain under control. Dogs using dog parks must be recall-trained and this includes within fenced spaces.
When will the new dog area be ready?
We expect to be able to open the fenced dog exercise area, Hamilton's first, in time for summer 2020. This is dependent on the weather.
How much will it cost?
The project was budgeted as part of the 2018-28 Long-Term Plan. The budget for design and construction is $177,000.
How will the new area affect my local park?
The fenced exercise area will be designed to fit into the local surrounds. It will be located at the side of whichever park is selected and will be constructed with materials that make it unobtrusive. Each of the possible locations is at least 40m from the closest property.