At a public meeting held at the Haas Park Fieldhouse (2402 N. Washtenaw Ave.) on May 1, the Chicago Park District unveiled its plans to begin construction in the fall on Park 556, a 10,000 square foot dog-friendly area between Artesian Drive and Western Avenue. LoganSquarist previously reported on the push for the dog park, and now the park is on its way.
The park will be funded entirely by the City of Chicago’s Open Space Impact Fee (OSIF), a program that collects fees from new residential developments to create public open spaces in Chicago.
Neighbors Weigh In
A crowd of approximately 25 people attended the meeting, including representatives from the Chicago Park District and the Logan Square Dog Park Committee. Erika Sellke, the park district’s Project Manager on Park 556, discussed the architectural drawings and fielded questions from concerned residents.
Some neighbors expressed concerns about trash pickup, lawn mowing, and water drainage solutions.
Several members of the Logan Square Dog Park Committee voiced their overwhelming approval after viewing the plans of the long-awaited park. The committee has been raising funds for the park for more than four years. The money raised by the committee to date, which is about $30,000, will go toward upkeep, maintenance and purchasing tools for the park. The park district will be in charge of general maintenance of the open space around the dog park, but it will be the community’s responsibility to keep the dog-friendly area clean.
A Dog-Friendly Future
Right now, the park district is in the process of finalizing the plans drawn by the landscape architect and securing pricing. Once the final plans are approved, construction will begin. Meanwhile, the dog park committee is busy planning its next fundraising event and sketching out plans to create a mural along the entire expressway wall.
Studies show that open green spaces in urban areas can serve to offset the stress and tension of city life for its residents. And it looks like the Logan Square community will be able to unwind at its first-ever dog-friendly park before winter arrives.