Park ‘fur’ friends

A drawing of the dog park planned for Sunningdale.

A one-hectare dog park, Leadville, will soon be opened by Garden Cities for the canine residents of Sunningdale.

The park, on Leadville Way, is off Braselton Road at the edge of the developed area to the east of the growing suburb that now comprises nearly 3 300 homes.

The civil engineering contract in preparation for the park is under way, and the park is expected to be completed before the end of the year, said Garden Cities.

The City of Cape Town opened a dog walking park behind Leonardo Park commercial centre, in Parklands on Friday August 5.

Garden Cities group manager for engineering and planning Renier Smith said: ‘We’ve added Leadville to the mix because a high percentage of households in Sunningdale have dogs, and it’s appropriate to our community objectives to provide a safe and attractive environment where residents and their furry friends can enjoy their leisure time together.”

Robert Rothig, chairman of the Sunningdale Sports Club, welcomed the development.

“People’s interests are diverse with sport and recreation key to a healthy community. Garden Cities gets the formula right with this dog park, because not only is it a great place for the dogs to socialise, but their owners will also get to know one another, and common interests have proved to help bind communities,” he said.

Leadville will be a safe place for residents to run their dogs in the fenced space that will also feature a shallow pond for dogs to cool their paws and drink the running water from a fountain at the centre. But it’s the 180m2 building with its 107m2 veranda at the entrance to the park that will also delight dog owners. It will house some services that many believe to be essential to their pets’ comfort and wellbeing. Among the potential tenants negotiating to take space in the building are a vet store and a dog behaviourist. For working dog owners, the possibility of a doggy day-care service will be good news.

The building will form the actual entrance to the park, which contributes to the security of the facility under the eye of the tenants who will also take primary responsibility for keeping general order in the park. Bags will be provided for dog owners to dispose of their dogs’ droppings in bins provided.

A portion of tenant rentals will be used to assist with the maintenance and management of the dog park.

The business side of the park will focus entirely on the care and comfort of dogs, but for owners, a coffee shop will cater for their caffeine craving while dogs romp on the wide swathes of grass in safety.

A fence to prevent pooches wandering too far will surround the park, but the open play area will also tie into the future green belt that meanders through the development. This will extend the scope of the park’s offering, with owners able to walk their dogs on leads in the public open spaces accessed through the formal dog park.