STOP wasting BC tax dollars on ticketing dog owners, SIGN to legalize Heather Park!
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Petition to the City of Vancouver to declare a section of Heather Park (South Cambie) to be a Neighbourhood Off-Leash Dog park.
Locals advise the City of Vancouver that we all frequently bring our dogs to Heather Park as there are no off leash dog areas anywhere else in walking distance to this area.
Many of us dog owners live in condos, apartments and shared homes in the immediate vicinity and do not have property with a private yard and therefore have no opportunity for our dogs to freely play and exercise in a safe, secured off-leash setting. This has forced us to venture into nearby parks in our neighbourhood; Heather Park being the most prominent due its lack of use during the majority of the year.
The use of Heather Park for off leash dogs has flagged attention with the city spending tax dollars on city vans to swarm, drive around and attempt to incur a $250 ticket on locals who are monitoring their dogs.
This has been causing an uproar in recent months due to the amount of City vans that have wasted tax dollars on fuel, salaries, time and funds that could be going into the safety of securing a legal dog park in the area. (And/or spending dollars on more dangerous issues such as driving issues/ running red lights, etc.)
The lack of a nearby dog park can force some of us dog owners (who have access to a vehicle) to drive to an off leash area, which is not in-line with Vancouver City's commitment to energy conservation and sustainable transportation, it is also inconvenient, impractical and a far walk for people who do not have vehicles (40 -75 minute return walk not including time spent allowing the dog to run). This also causes restrictions on where we can securely park (especially with the sky-rocket in metered hourly prices!) to visit such parks such as Charleston, Olympic Village, Queen Elizabeth, Oak Meadows and more.
Many of us are reluctant by-law violators, but have little options in this regard. It is nearly impossible to exercise our dogs while they are leashed. The importance of exercising our dogs is to ensure a safe community to prevent issues/reports with bad behaved dogs. It is so important to give dogs a great amount of exercise, and socialization is necessary to ensure well-behaved dogs, therefore less dogs who could have destructive behaviour, rough play, excess barking, unfriendly habits, and pestering or annoying behaviour.
In order to improve our community it is only reasonable to consider utilizing Heather Park as an off-leash dog park, We believe that such an accommodation will be a win/win situation for ALL park users, not just the dog owners, for the following reasons :
- Clearly stated and safely allocated locations for all recreational uses (ie. Dog park, playground, tennis courts, sports fields)
- Safer dogs in the community due to the ability to socialize dogs together, train them in secure park, give them adequate exercise so they do not misbehave
- Safety for families with small children away from dogs
- Stay on focus for Vancouver's target to be a Green City by 2020, Vancouver City's commitment to energy conservation and sustainable transportation (Less driving to dog parks)
- The dog owners will no longer be in non compliance with the city by - laws
Less city and tax payer dollars spent in driving around to ticket dogs off leash (more money to spend elsewhere on community structure)
- More time for city to focus on all the vehicle break ins in the area
- Future Preparations – There are several more condo buildings going up in the area with potential growth in the amount of dog owners in the community
- Less complaints for dogs being off leash
- The NON DOG OWNING users of the park will still have a portion of the park for themselves; but will no longer be interfered with by dogs, by the dog owners,
- The lack of use during the majority of the year from non-dog owners.
- There are an adequate amount of parks to satisfy the needs of recreation such as playgrounds, sporting fields, and open space for local families within 500 meters of Heather Park in either direction.
We ask the City of Vancouver, Parks and Recreation to consider a medium sized off leash area (1-2 acres of the 2.42 acre space; currently only 1/3 being used as fenced in tennis courts) to be accessible to the majority of local residents within a 15 minute walk. We request secure log fencing (similar to Charleston Park) that will secure the grassy area away from the central path that runs through the middle of the park and separates the tennis courts as well as the 4 swing grounds to the east of the path. No additional amenities are required at this time.
Tired of being scared, paranoid, or always watching over your shoulder for City of Vancouver's DOG Ticketing ?!
SIGN FOR OFF-LEASH DOG PARK!
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