A dust-up over delays in improvements to San Bruno’s dog park has resulted in the city vowing to make nighttime lighting a priority.
Pledged donations now total $1,500, half the amount needed to buy and install lights for ’s off-leash area, said community services director Randy Schwartz.
Commodore visitors have long complained that the area is dirty and smells bad, offers no security and lacks the facilities of other dog parks. In August, citing a lack of consensus and a tight budget, the commission . Dog owners have since turned their attention to sprucing up the city's only dog park, beginning with raising funds for lighting.
Then signals got crossed. Dog owners say they were asked to wait for instructions from the city's Parks and Recreation Commission as to how and where to contribute, but that no account was established.
Then came a notice that said "no one has expressed interest in lights in the park and no donations were ever received,” dog owner Claire Zvanski wrote in an email, presented at the March 16 meeting of the parks commission. Her conclusion: "We are at the bottom of the priority list for the Commission and the City of San Bruno.”
However, since the meeting, the commission has engaged dog owners with productive results, Schwartz said. All involved agreed to avoid depleting the lighting account by funding smaller projects, such as much-needed benches.
“We came together on lots of nice points,” he said. “The Commodore dog park is definitely something we look at as permanent. And as resources become available, we plan to make more improvements. The dog owners have some excellent suggestions.”
Zvanski urged the commissioners to visit the South San Francisco and Brisbane parks, which San Bruno dog owners prefer even though they are farther away.
“We do want you to see that a dog park can be well cared for and maintained if people work together,” she said in an email.
“We are thankful for the basic services we receive such as regular stocking of bags,” she continued. “We are still looking forward to other improvements to make our park nicer and easier to maintain. We are anxious to work together with parks and recreation staff to make this park a better place for all.”
The commission has established a special account to fund improvements. Potential donors can contact Schwartz at email@example.com.
A list and description of dog parks throughout the county is available on the city's website.