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Northfield discussing creation of dog park - Ocean City Sentinel: News

Northfield discussing creation of dog park

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Posted: Wednesday, December 4, 2019 10:48 am

NORTHFIELD — A possible location is being scouted for a proposed dog park in Northfield, Councilwoman Susan Korngut said Tuesday, Nov. 26.  

City Council work sessions are held immediately before the regular City Council meetings. 

The dog park was discussed Tuesday, Nov. 12, and several people spoke both for and against it. 

On Nov. 12, Korngut explained the dog park would be run by a nonprofit organization and would be funded by donations. 

The park was planned to be modeled after a dog park in Egg Harbor Township, which is also run by a nonprofit organization. 

This organization would pay for the dog park’s insurance and would lease the land for the park from the city. 

The proposed park is 15,560 square feet and would be divided into an area for small dogs and an area for large dogs. 

The dog park would be gated and its members would enter via a key fob. Due to the dog park’s smaller size, membership would be somewhat restricted. 

The Egg Harbor Township dog park is open to Atlantic County and Cape May County residents, although Cape May County residents pay more to access the park. 

In the Nov. 12 presentation, the park was planned to be in Birch Grove Park and a bocce ball court and four barbecue grills would need to be relocated to make room for the dog park. 

The dog park would be open from dawn to dusk.

A city ordinance would need to change to allow dogs in Birch Grove Park, if the park comes to fruition. 

In the Nov. 26 work session, Korngut updated City Council on the dog park’s progress. 

She discussed attending a Birch Grove Park Advisory Committee meeting, which was held after the last council meeting. 

“They were very receptive to the idea of the dog park and they seemed very excited about it.  They had a good crowd at the meeting and they seemed to react positively,” she said. 

Korngut said they did decide to move the park from a previously proposed location at Birch Grove. They chose to move it so the bocce ball court and barbecues were not relocated. 

Korngut said she and city engineer Rami Nassar will scout a few more possible locations, which are also in Birch Grove Park. 

Additionally, Korngut said a few people have offered to volunteer with the park. 

During the Nov. 12 work session, residents spoke in favor of and against a dog park. On Nov. 26, Bill Garry, who also spoke on Nov. 12, said he was “particularly not fond of putting dogs where we put children” and expressed concerns about dogs getting loose and possibly biting a child. 

There is a playground in Birch Grove Park and several athletic fields and facilities. 

He felt there was a “small segment of the community that is in favor” of a dog park and said he ventured to guess there is a larger group that is not. 

Garry urged City Council members to talk to the municipalities that have dog parks. 

Another resident also said he was not in favor of the dog park. He cited a designated beach for dogs in Egg Harbor Township, which he said was “crazy.” He said people have dogs running loose and said people do not pick up after their dogs.

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