Community

Commission schedules dog-park discussions

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Megan V. Winslow/Town Crier
One-hour workshops about potentially bringing fenced-in dogs or off-leash hours to Los Altos parks are scheduled for Feb. 12 and 29.

Updated 12:48 p.m. Jan. 28

A series of upcoming meetings could determine the fate of a proposed fenced-in dog park and off-leash hours at Los Altos parks. 

The city of Los Altos has scheduled one-hour workshops 7-8 p.m. and 8-9 p.m. Feb. 12 in the Garden House at Shoup Park, 400 University Ave.; and 10-11 a.m. and 11 a.m. to noon Feb. 29 in the multipurpose room at Grant Park, 1575 Holt Ave.

After lengthy discussion over format and the best options for gathering input, members of the city’s Parks and Recreation Commission signed off on the workshops at their Jan. 8 meeting.

Based on commissioners’ input, the workshops will include a presentation on the history, process, criteria and pros and cons of each proposed dog-park location. Copies of staff reports will be available for review, along with displays of the proposed sites. Attendees will have opportunities to provide additional, anonymous comments.

Fenced-in dog parks have been discussed for McKenzie and south Lincoln parks. Off-leash hours have been considered at Hillview Baseball Field and Heritage Oaks Park.

“While residents are encouraged to stay as long as they want, the meeting format was designed to be a drop-in with an interactive component,” said Donna Legge, recreation and community services director. “An informational presentation will be scheduled on the hour to include a review of the history, criteria and pros and cons for each location.”

Commissioners are seeking feedback on whether residents prefer a fenced-in park at Lincoln or McKenzie.

A one-year pilot program is being considered for off-leash hours at both Hillview and Heritage Oaks. The off-leash hours program would establish set times in the morning and evening, when park space is not scheduled for other recreational programs.

The workshops will allow residents to choose options through a charted system with colored dots. Residents can cast “yes” or “no” votes for each location as well as voting “yes” for fenced-in or off-leash options in general, while opposing the specific locations. In addition, participants will have the opportunity to submit other ideas or comments throughout the process.

Legge said feedback at the workshops will help commissioners make a recommendation to the Los Altos City Council.

The city plans to update residents via email or the city website at losaltosca.gov/dogpark.

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