County partnering to open dog park at Bunker

A new dog park on the west side of Bunker Hills Regional Park is scheduled to open Monday, Aug. 5.

Work on the parking lot was taking place this week in preparation for the opening of the new dog park Monday, Aug. 5 in Bunker Hills Regional Park adjacent to the compost site. The project is a collaboration between Anoka County and the cities of Andover and Coon Rapids.

Work on the parking lot was taking place this week in preparation for the opening of the new dog park Monday, Aug. 5 in Bunker Hills Regional Park adjacent to the compost site. The project is a collaboration between Anoka County and the cities of Andover and Coon Rapids.

Fencing was being installed and the parking lot graded and paved this week in preparation for the opening of the dog park.

This project is a collaboration between Anoka County and the cities of Andover and Coon Rapids.

The new dog park is located in the regional park on 133rd Avenue off Hanson Boulevard on the border of Andover and Coon Rapids adjacent to the Anoka County compost site.

A soft opening is planned Monday, but there may be a small celebration planned later on, according to Karen Blaska, county parks planner.

The dog park will be open year-round during normal county park hours – a half-hour before sunrise to a half-hour after sunset, Blaska said.

The cost of the work is being split three ways and use of in-kind labor from each agency has reduced the cost to some $50,000, according to Tim Himmer, Coon Rapids public works director.

“This joint effort has been working very well with each organization providing materials and labor in an effort to keep project costs down,” Himmer said.

The benches and tables for the dog park won’t be in place at the time the dog park opens.

They have been ordered by the county, but are not expected to be delivered and installed until the end of August, according to Blaska.

Under a joint powers agreement between the county and the two cities, the county has been responsible for the tree clearing, restoration and signage; Andover has provided labor and equipment to prepare and grade the site; and Coon Rapids has been in charge of plan preparation, construction staking and providing class 5 material as well as project administration.

The county will maintain the dog park (mowing, trash, repairs, etc.) with Andover and Coon Rapids sharing equally in the cost, the joint powers agreement states.

The new dog park is 6.58 acres in size and is twice the size as the county’s other dog park, which is located at Locke Park in Fridley, according to John VonDeLinde, county parks and recreation director.

The location of the dog park is ideal because it is not in a neighborhood, VonDeLinde said.

While Andover does not have a dog park in its city, Coon Rapids has operated a dog park at Trackside Park since 2006.

But a few residents in the area have voiced complaints about the impact the dog park has had on the neighborhood, including parking issues created by people using the dog park.

In fact, the Coon Rapids City Council at its Aug. 20 meeting is scheduled to discuss the future of the Trackside Park dog park now that the new dog park is open.

Peter Bodley is at
peter.bodley@ecm-inc.com

 
  • Matt

    We stopped by the new park last night and the parking lot was not paved yet. It also looked as though the grass hadn’t been trimmed in the park ever. Maybe in another week or two the park will be open but it definitely wasnt on 8/5.

    For those looking for the dog park its down 113th and hanson past the archery and compost site. You will see a no dumping sign to the left of a gate at the end of the road. The parking lot is right there with the park just beyond.

  • Jamie Rehbein

    EXTREMELY DISAPPOINTED!
    I went on Sept. 10th and is still hadn’t been mowed or maintained and there is no grass it is all weeds, sand and burs. In the large dog area there is maybe 1/3 acre of open play area full of weeds,sand and burs and the rest of the area is unusable it is full of 3ft hills and weeds and burs waist high. The large dog area has no shade the only play area is in direct sunlight. Not to forget that this park is located directly across from the gun range! My dog was terrified and we had to leave after one lap. There is a very small walking path around the perimeter that again was not maintained, I highly recommend wearing pants and boots, I went in capris and flip flops that was a bad idea. Although we did not go into the small dog area it looked a lot nicer the land was flat with lots of shade but still full of weeds. I don’t know how this park could have cost 50k the fencing wasn’t great, the land not graded in large dog area, still no tables and lot still not paved. Maybe in winter this dog park MAY be better because snow will make the entire area usable and I won’t have to worry so much about the sounds of the gun range and also my dog overheating.

  • Michael Hilber

    I agree that this dog park will not be used alot until the county cleans up all the burrs and makes it usable for the dogs. My 7 month old puppy left with burrs I had to pick off. You cannot even see your dog when it goes into the high brush and weeds. Hopefully someone in the county will see these posts and do something. This could be a great asset for dog lovers and thier pets?

  • Michael Hilber

    This park needs alot of work to be useful. Grass and burrs need to be mowed and removed. Your dog gets lost out of sight in the tall weeds and brush. Nothing is finished. Hopefully someone from the county reads these posts

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