Columbia Dog Park Not Receiving Money This Time Around
COLUMBIA -Columbia voters just passed an issue to extend a park sales tax. This lets Parks and Recreation spend $12 million over five years. With this money, Parks and Rec plans on improving football and lacrosse fields in Cosmo Park, new restrooms in some of the parks and playground renovations in Douglass Park and Cosmo Park, just to name a few.
$250,000 of this money is going to improve Twin Lakes Recreation Area. After many meetings with residents, Parks and Rec realized that a lot of the improvements needed to go toward the dog park. Some suggestions for dog park improvements were permanent fences, lights and a dog washing station.
The other dog park in Columbia, located in Garth Nature Area, is only receiving money for restroom improvements. Many dog owners who use this park said there needs to be a concrete path for strollers and wheel chairs. A few of the people who use this dog park use wheelchairs.
Dog owner Tom Masters said it's hard to get around when it rains. "This is a real low area here, and when we get a lot of rain the trail floods out."
Park users said a paved path would help in the winter, too.
Mike Hood, director of Parks and Recreation, said while the Garth Nature Area isn’t receiving any money now, a concrete path will happen down the road. Hood said Garth dog park is more popular than anyone expected. As it continues to generate interest, Parks and Rec will continue to consider upgrades.
Hood said many of the parks receiving money from the tax have needed improvements for a while. He said the reason Garth dog park wasn't considered is because it is relatively new, while Twin Lakes dog park has been open since the 1980s.