Report - Leash Free Park by w15eguy

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									               The Corporation of the
               TOWN OF MILTON



Report to:      Chair & Members of the Community Services Standing Committee

From:           Jennifer Reynolds, Director, Community Services
Date:           June 12,2006
Report No.      COMS-033-06


Subject:        Leash Free Park


RECOMMENDATION:           That COMS-033-06 be received for information;

                          AND THAT the Clarke Neighbourhood Park located west of
                          Fourth Line South of CP Tracks be approved as the “pilot “
                          site for the Leash Free Park;

                          AND THAT the Community Services Department host a
                          public information session on the Leash Free Park ;

                          AND THAT Council approve an amendment to the 2006
                          Capital Budget to provide funding for the initial
                          development of the Leash Free Park in the amount of
                          $ 50,000.00 and similarly amend the 2007 Capital Forecast
                          to reduce the budget for Clarke Neighbourhood Park by the
                          same amount.

                          AND THAT the Community Services Department monitor
                          the use of the Leash Free Park for a two year period and
                          report back to Council with their findings.

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

This report is to provide Council with an update regarding the selection of a “pilot” site
for the leash free park and its management and operation.

REPORT

Background

Council is aware of the growing community interest regarding the development of a
leash free park.
             The Corporation of the
             TOWN OF MILTON
                                                                       Report No.COMS-033-06
                                                                                   Page No. 2



Staff met with interested Milton residents and representatives from the City of
Mississauga to better understand the roles and responsibilities of the City and the
volunteers in the establishment and operation of a leash free park.

As a result of Report No. COMS-048-05, staff was directed to pursue options to
advance the development of a leash free park working in cooperation with a community
organization and other interested parties.


Discussion

Staff reviewed a wide range of potential leash free park locations within the community
and then short-listed the search down to five locations. The opportunities and
constraints of each site were then examined. Refer to Appendix A.

To further refine the selection of the preferred site, an evaluation and ranking matrix was
prepared for each site as outlined in Appendix B and the following criteria scored for each
site:

   •   adequate land base
   •   existing parking
   •   emergency access
   •   compatibility with adjacent land use
   •   proximity within the community
   •   access to water
   •   existing shade trees
            The Corporation of the
            TOWN OF MILTON
                                                                       Report No.COMS-033-06
                                                                                   Page No. 3



The resulting site analysis and ranking concluded that the 2.0 acre parcel located within
Clarke Neighbourhood, on the west side of the Fourth Line, south of the CP Tracks was the
preferred location. These lands have been recently conveyed to the Town for parkland
purposes. Refer to Appendix C – Site Map .


On May 30, 2006, staff met with representatives from Residents for Off Leash Opportunities
 (ROLO) a local residents group and presented the site analysis. Following considerable
the discussion, there was unanimous support for the Clarke Neighbourhood Park as the pilot
site.




As a condition of the project moving forward, the roles and responsibilities of the Town and
ROLO needed to be clarified. In summary, it was agreed that for the project to be successful
a partnership between the Town and ROLO was required. Although the details are yet to be
confirmed it was generally agreed:

   •   The Town would design the site, provide the land base and initial finances to
       implement the site works, including; grading, fencing, park furniture and routine site
       maintenance such as grass cutting and garbage pickup.

   •   ROLO would be required to operate as a not for profit organization with a constitution
       and bylaws, and fundraise toward the capital and operating costs for the ongoing
       development and operation of the facility.

Currently ROLO indicates they have approximately 270 individuals who have expressed an
interest in the development of a Leash Free Park. Through a future open house, a greater
public awareness would be generated which will provide additional community feedback on
the levels of public support for this initiative.

The Town of Milton Animal Control Bylaw currently has provision for a Leash-Free Park.
While there is no need to amend the by-law, it is recognized that there will be impacts
with respect to enforcement issues associated with the park. Staff will work with the
Clerk’s Division to more fully understand the impacts regarding enforcement, and also
any impacts regarding the Oakville Humane Society. These will have to be assessed
as we review all operational requirements for the site.
            The Corporation of the
            TOWN OF MILTON
                                                                     Report No.COMS-033-06
                                                                                 Page No. 4




The reference to a Leash-free park within the Animal Control By-law is as follows:

Section 43 of By-law 90-2004 states:

   43. Notwithstanding any other provision of this By-law, save and except with respect
       to dogs ordered to be muzzled under Part 6 of this By-law, in the event that
       Council creates a leash-free park within the Town, an Owner shall not be
       required to keep a dog on a leash while in such park, but must be present in such
       park with the dog and be able to control the dog as necessary.

Section 43.1 from By-law 51-2006, which amended 90-2004, states:


          43.1 Nothwithstanding Section 43, every owner of a pit bull shall ensure that a
              pit bull is leashed, muzzled and under the control of a person who has
              sufficient strength and ability to maintain control of the dog at all times, in
              a leash-free park.


Currently there are 1202 dogs licensed by the Town of Milton. That is considered a
small portion of the number of dogs that are actually residing within the community.

Research has shown that for many residents, dog ownership offers a family recreational
activity. It allows both dog owners and dogs with a venue to exercise and socialize in a
positive manner.

Because a Leash Free Park would be a new recreational opportunity for the Town of
Milton, it is recommended that staff monitor the operation of the facility over a two-year
period and report back to Council.


Financial Impact

Design fees have been approved in the 2006 Capital Parks Budget under the Clarke
Neighbourhood Park budget.
             The Corporation of the
             TOWN OF MILTON
                                                                        Report No.COMS-033-06
                                                                                    Page No. 5



Currently the 2007 Parks Capital budget forecast allocates $ 50,000.00 for the
construction of a Leash Free Park .

Approval to amend the 2006 Capital Budget by providing funding in the amount of
$ 50,000 .00 will allow the initial development of the Leash Free Park to be built this
year.

Future impacts regarding the operation of the park will be reported as they are
identified.


Respectfully submitted,




Jennifer Reynolds,
Director, Community Services


If you have any questions on the content of this report, please contact: John Bryant, Manager,
Parks and Open Space, Tel: 905-878-7252 Ext.2160

Attachments:     Appendix A - Leash Free Park- Site Evaluation
                 Appendix B - Leash Free Park – Ranking Matrix
                 Appendix C - Proposed Leash Free Park – Site Map


CAO Approval: _________________________
Appendix A - Leash Free Park Site Evaluation              Town of Milton

Site: Clarke Neighbourhood Park
Location: West of Fourth Line South of CP Tracks




 Opportunities                              Constraints

 - Dedicated site would provide             - Capital costs required to
 exclusive leash free use                   provide fencing, gates, signage
 - Existing parking                         etc.
 - Emergency access                         - Inconvenient access during
 - Compatible with adjacent land use        short term (until James Snow
 - Centrally located between the            Parkway realignment complete)
 existing urban area and new                - Close proximity to existing
 development area                           railway tracks
 - Close proximity to creek
 - Adjacent to existing wood lot
 would provide some shaded areas
 - Isolated from existing residential
 development
 - Natural grassy area
 - Potential walkway connections to
 future parks and open space
 - Isolated from busy roads
Leash Free Park Site Evaluation                           Town of Milton

Site: Community Park
Location: Santa Maria Blvd. And Derry Rd.




 Opportunities                              Constraints

 - Existing parking                         - Incompatible with future land
 - Emergency access                         uses proposed for park ie.
 - Centrally located between the            intensive active recreation
 existing urban area and new                facilities, children’s play areas
 development area                           - Capital costs required to
 - Isolated from existing residential       provide fencing, gates, signage
 development                                etc.
 - Natural grassy area
 - Isolated from busy roads
Leash Free Park Site Evaluation                           Town of Milton

Site: Drumquin Park
Location: Britannia Rd. and Trafalgar Rd.




 Opportunities                              Constraints

 - Existing parking                         - May be issues related to
 - Emergency access                         compatibility with existing
 - Close proximity to creek                 adjacent land uses within park
 - Close proximity to mature trees          - Capital costs required to
 may provide some shaded areas              provide fencing, gates, signage
 - Isolated from existing residential       etc.
 development                                - Not centrally located.
 - Natural grassy area
 - Isolated from busy roads
Leash Free Park Site Evaluation                 Town of Milton

Site: Lions Sports Park
Location: 99 Thompson Rd. South




 Opportunities                    Constraints

 - Existing parking               - Incompatible with existing land
 - Emergency access               uses within park ie. intensive
 - Centrally located              active recreation facilities,
                                  children’s play areas
                                  - Park almost ‘built out’
                                  - No mature trees for shade
                                  - Capital costs required to
                                  provide fencing, gates, signage
                                  etc.
Leash Free Park Site Evaluation                    Town of Milton

Site: Rotary Park
Location: 100 Garden Lane




 Opportunities                       Constraints

 - Existing parking                  - Incompatible with existing land
 - Emergency access                  uses within park ie. intensive
 - Centrally located                 active recreation facilities,
 - Close proximity to mature trees   children’s play areas
 may provide some shaded areas       - Park ‘built out’
                                     - Capital costs required to
                                     provide fencing, gates, signage
                                     etc.
Appendix B - Leash Free Site Evaluation and Ranking Matrix                                     Town of Milton

                                     2 acre   Existing   Emergency    Compatible with   Central Access to     Existing  Overall
         Location / Criteria        size min. Parking     Access     Adjacent Land Use Location   Water     Shade Trees Rank

Clarke Neighbourhood Park             yes       yes         yes            yes           yes       yes          yes        1
(Fourth Line south of CP Tracks)

Community Park                        yes       yes         yes             no           yes       no           no        n/a
(Santa Maria Blvd.and Derry Rd.)

Drumquin Park                         yes       yes         yes            yes            no       yes          yes        2
(Britannia Rd. and Trafalgar Rd.)

Lions Sports Park                     yes       yes         yes             no           yes       no           no        n/a
(99 Thompson Rd. South)

Rotary Park                           yes       yes         yes             no           yes       no           yes       n/a
(100 Garden Lane)
Appendix C
                                      -
Proposed Town of Milton Leash Free Park Site Map

								
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