Friday, October 31, 2014

Appointees tapped to mull dog park naming rights

By DOUG CARDER, Herald Senior Writer | 7/8/2013

Ottawa’s future dog park should soon have a name, city officials said.

The question: Will it be named for the project’s largest donor or carry another moniker?

Ottawa’s future dog park should soon have a name, city officials said.

The question: Will it be named for the project’s largest donor or carry another moniker?

A committee of five community leaders and city officials has been appointed to review a proposed name for the facility.

The Bark Park Boosters group has proposed the dog park be named “Advantage Ford Bark Park” to honor Advantage Ford, 402 N. Main St., Ottawa, which has pledged $10,000 toward the construction of the park in the northwest corner of Forest Park, 320 N. Locust St., Ottawa, project organizers said.

Ottawa city commissioners recently voted 5-0 to appoint the following people to the committee: Sara Caylor, Ottawa mayor; John Coen, Ottawa Area Chamber of Commerce president and chief executive officer; Andy Haney, Ottawa public works director; John Boyd or his designee, Ottawa Planning Commission; and Deb Barker, Franklin County Historical Society director.

In accordance with city policy for naming city lands and facilities, Caylor said, an ad hoc committee is to consider the requested name and make its recommendation to the city commission. The policy was put in place in 2005, city officials said, when alternative names were being considered for Ottawa Municipal Airport. The city has not set a timeline for naming the dog park, but city commissioners said they would like the review to be completed as quickly as possible.

To Wynndee Lee’s knowledge, this is the first time the city has had the opportunity to appoint a committee to review a name request, the city’s director of planning and codes administration told city commissioners Wednesday.

Lee brought the proposed name to city commissioners at their study session July 1.

The park will consist of two off-leash areas for large and small dogs. During its fundraising campaign, organizers had set a benchmark of $5,000 for a “naming donor.” Advantage Ford’s pledge covers both areas of the park, organizers said.

In late 2012, a group of residents approached the city about developing a dog park, and the Bark Park Boosters committee came about as an extension of that effort. The goal of developing the park is to provide pet owners with a safe place to let their dogs run off-leash, organizers said. The city commission recently approved a proposal to designate the northwest corner of Forest Park for development of the dog park.

Advantage Ford’s donation accounts for about 25 percent of the total fundraising goal for the park, Bark Park Boosters members said. The park will cost an estimated $45,000 to $55,000 to put in place, organizers said, with the auto dealership’s $10,000 bringing the total raised thus far to about $24,000. The group plans to build the park this fall. If funds are not sufficient for all aspects of the park, it can be built without some play features and training amenities that could be added when more funds are raised, Lee told city commissioners.

Linda Reed, city commissioner, already has received some feedback about the proposed name since Advantage Ford’s pledge was announced July 1, she said. Reed did not elaborate on what the feedback was, but she asked which committee member should people contact if they had comments about the dog park’s proposed name.

Residents can contact any member of the committee, Caylor said, or they can leave their comments with Richard Nienstedt, city manager, at Ottawa City Hall, 101 S. Hickory St., (785) 229-3637 or email rnienstedt@ottawaks.gov

comments powered by Disqus