Feedback on Leash Optional Pilot Areas Wraps Up April 1
Port Coquitlam residents and park users have until April 1 to give their “pawsition” on the leash optional areas located at Skyline and Chelsea Parks.
Skyline and Chelsea Parks were the selected locations for leash optional areas as part of a one-year pilot to meet growing demand from dog owners for more off-leash areas following extensive community consultation in 2018. Leash optional areas are unfenced park spaces shared by the general public and residents with off-leash dogs.
The City has been collecting feedback since last April about the pilot project to help make decisions about future off-leash areas.
Dog owners and non-owners have until April 1 to share their feedback by completing the online survey at www.portcoquitlam.ca/dogs.
The confidential and anonymous online survey will find out what people think about the leash optional areas and give additional feedback. Staff will also be at Skyline and Chelsea Parks in coming weeks to seek direct feedback from park users.
The city began investigating additional off-leash areas last year to address growing demand. Port Coquitlam has about 8,000 registered dogs and two fenced dog parks: the larger Shaughnessy Park Dog Off-leash Area on the north side, and the smaller Downtown Dog Off-leash Area on the south side.
Dog parks can be busy during peak times and many dog owners are not within walking distance to them. Off-leash dogs are regularly seen in city parks and trails, raising concerns about safety, dog waste, and damage to sports fields and ecological areas.
The leash-optional concept received support when the city sought public feedback in late summer 2018 through an online survey, social media polls, and staff attendance at community events and dog parks.
More than 1,600 responses were received over a four-week period, with 77 per cent of survey respondents and about 64 per cent of social media respondents supporting shared, unfenced off-leash areas. Skyline and Chelsea Park had the highest level of support among the suggested locations. About 77 per cent of survey respondents were current or future dog owners.
For information or to provide feedback about the one-year pilot project, visit www.portcoquitlam.ca/dogs.
Manager of Communications & Admin Services
City of Port Coquitlam
Tel 604.927.5335 Cel 604.218.0533