SANTA MONICA—Members of the Santa Monica City Council discussed the possibility of turning Reed Park into an off-leash dog park during Tuesday, April 27’s city council meeting. The idea was first brought up several years ago by the city council.
According to councilmember Phil Brock, the idea was brought up because there are not many parks near Santa Monica where dogs can roam free. There are currently four off leash dog parks in Santa Monica that includes: Airport Park Dog Park, Herb Katz Dog Park, Pacific Street Dog Park and Memorial Park Dog Run.
Mayor Sue Himmelrich indicated there were questions if there was space and if the city was financially capable of making it happen. Another issued discussed during the meeting was Reed Park currently serving as a housing site for the homeless. Franklin Park is also being considered as an alternative as suggested by councilmember Gleam Davis. One resident sent the email to the city council responding to the notion of the Reed Park becoming an off leash park that stated:
“Dear Mayor Himmelrich, Mayor Pro Tempore McCowan, and members of the City Council:
Homelessness is a difficult problem. Converting Reed Park to a dog park would be morally shameful. You know that.”
Elizabeth Van Denburgh, the Wilmont Chair wrote in an email to the Santa Monica City Council:
“Wilmont has been asking for a dog park for several years. As the most dense and populated neighborhood of the City we have a need for the over 23,000 residents to enjoy, walk, socialize and potty their dog outside. With this budget request we will have the knowledge of what a dog park will cost if we replace the northeast side of Reed Park’s green space with a dog park.
The work does not stop there. This green space is the only available public green space east of Palisades Park for Wilmont. We will be having an ongoing dialogue with the neighborhood regarding how to either return the Reed green space to being safe and healthy with additional activation and by working with police and existing ambassadors or
working to develop a dog park there which this budget request will provide essential information for.
We are committed to identifying a dog park and while Reed Park is a possibility we welcome further details of other spaces that could be made available for this important part of well being in Wilmont.”
All dogs in Santa Monica are required to be licensed. Call the Animal Shelter during business hours for more information at 310-458-8594.
Written By Mary Kathryn Grill and Donald Roberts