KDOG

Day’s Verse:
For when you did awesome things that we did not expect,
you came down, and the mountains trembled before you.

Isaiah 64:3

Not a radio station, but a nonprofit group!

I think I’ve mentioned my interested in turning a vacant lot in my neighborhood into a park, preferably a dog park, as the Community Action Project I have to do for AmeriCorps.

On Saturday I talked with my friend Karissa, who’s a civil engineer and knows a thing or two about getting projects put together and implemented, about my park idea. She said that I should expect it to take a year or two, depending on whether the permitting had been started, to turn it into a park. Well! I have 10 months as an AmeriCorps intern, so my CAP wouldn’t get finished in that time if I took the project on, but I didn’t feel overly deterred. After all, it’s a very worthwhile project and I like the idea of having a mini-Marymoor closer than Redmond.

Today I spoke with a very informative, knowledgeable woman with SODA, the group that runs the Marymoor off-leash area. She set me straight: One to years is a major underestimate. Many dog parks take four or five years to get implemented, and some take much longer than that. Dog parks are difficult to create because people say, “Why should we have a park just for dogs?” The answer is: “It’s not a park for dogs, it’s a park for people, the same as a ballpark isn’t a park for balls and a bike path isn’t a path for bicycles.”

As it turns out, Kirkland citizens have already formed a group to push for a dog park in my town: KDOG. The effort to create an off-leash area in Kirkland has gone on for the last — gulp — eight years, with little success. The current iteration of the Kirkland off-leash group, however, seems persistent and well worth talking to. Tonight they’re going to be at a Kirkland City Council meeting, and I think I’ll go meet them.

Should be informative, if nothing else. I’ve never been to a City Council meeting before.

2 thoughts on “KDOG”

  1. I love that you’re working on doing something with that vacant lot! I’ve always wanted to see that park get used for something good.

    If I may put in my $0.02, I think it would be better as a kids’ park than a dog park. Dog parks work better with a lot of area for walking and running. A small lot like that one works well for just putting in a jungle gym and a few benches and being the park at the end of the street. Of course nothing is stopping it from being both.

  2. Good input. However, a jungle gym and benches cost LOTS OF MONEY, and one thing that’s abundantly clear is that money’s gonna be tight on a project like this. The odds of getting some fencing material donate are way better than getting an entire play structure or benches.

    However, I’m planning on talking to the neighbors to see what they want, and really shaping the project based on that.

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