Wednesday Dec 21 2011
Building begins for dog park
By: Jon Brines, Placer Herald Correspondent
Rocklin awards $24,955 for construction costs; non-profit to do finishing touches
After nearly two years on the drawing board, construction of Rocklin’s first dog park is underway at Johnson-Springview Park. On Monday, crews from Arrow Fence Company began digging the holes for the fence, which will encompass 1,294 linear feet for the dog playground. There will also be concrete areas for a dog wash. In April, the City Council approved plans for a dog park at Lone Tree Park off West Oaks Boulevard. Last month, however, the Parks and Recreation Commission approved moving the venue to Johnson Springview Park after construction challenges at the original location were discovered. Since the council had already approved the concept, there was no need for a public hearing on the change of venue. The city has agreed to pay $24,955 to Arrow for the construction work. Rocklin Director of Parks and Recreation Gordon Holt said the ongoing public-private partnership with the community group Rocklin Residents Unite For Fido (RRUFF) is making the project possible. “What we’re trying to do is put the fence in. That’s the city’s part,” Holt said. Other costs, including providing ongoing maintenance, benches and clean-up will be the responsibility of RRUFF, Holt continued. RRUFF founder Vicki Curtis is excited about getting the park built. “It is a beautiful site, with natural landscaping, many trees for shade and an area for the special needs pooches,” Curtis said. The park will have three fenced in areas: one for big dogs, one for small and another area for classes or special needs. “They can come in and have a little private space for their dogs,” Holt explained. For Curtis, the success of the two-year fundraising and awareness campaign has been bittersweet as her dog, Maizie, passed away this fall. “We’ll be donating a memorial bench so she can watch over the park and make sure everyone is having fun and behaving themselves,” Curtis said. Holt said memorial benches placed in the park must be approved by the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission. Disc golfer Josh Sanguitti, who comes to the park once a week with his dog, said residents need to share the community space. “It’s a community area,” Sanguitti said. “Barking? Have you ever heard it when they have a baseball game over there? It’s 10,000 screaming children. What’s the difference?” Curtis is more concerned with the immediate needs for the new dog destination. “Now we need to keep raising money for all the amenities at the park (like) waste dispenser stations and bags, benches, wading pools, chairs, hoses, toys and tennis balls, bulletin board,” she said. The organization will also need volunteers to help monitor the dog park and keep it clean as well as get the word out about licensing dogs. “So many people saw the same vision we did and because of that our park will definitely become one of the very best in the area,” Curtis said. Holt hopes to have the fence constructed before Christmas with the dog park opening in mid January. For more information about RRUFF, visit rruff.vpweb.com.