Dog park demolition under way

City hopes to open facility this spring

COVINGTON, Ky. – The construction of a neighborhood dog park on Covington’s west side officially got under way today.

A Bobcat and dump truck operated by Public Works crews began removing pavement and short divider walls at an existing playground at Ninth and Philadelphia streets early this afternoon. The demolition is the first physical work on what will become a 1½ acre site on which dogs can officially roam.

Covington Parks & Rec Manager Ben Oldiges said the project has been a long time coming.

“I’m really excited, in fact, probably ecstatic,” he said. “This has been talked about for the last decade, and we’re finally underway. There will be a lot of happy dogs and dog owners.”

Eventually, the City hopes to build additional neighborhood dog parks on the City’s eastern edge and in South Covington, he said.

The City will soon issue a request for proposals for about $100,000 worth of fencing at the west side site, he said. All told, the equipment for the park and its installation will cost more than $125,000.

The funding is coming from federal sources and a $10,000 donation from the Northern Kentucky Association of Realtors. Brandstetter Carroll Inc. did the design.

Oldiges said the City hoped to have the dog park operational by late spring with a grand opening ceremony held sometime around then.

The park will include high-end decorative fencing, separate areas for small and large dogs, water fountains (for dogs and their owners), benches, shaded areas, and a perimeter trail.

The location was the second-most popular site mentioned by dog owners in a survey and during public engagement sessions last year, Oldiges said.

Health concerns ruled out the most popular site, the field in the shadow of the Interstate 75 wall. That area serves as a stormwater detention pond and is covered with rainwater containing partially treated sewage several times a year during torrential storms.

The dog park will be named for Army Sgt. 1st Class Jason Bishop, the 1993 Holmes High School graduate who was killed by bomb in 2006 while serving in Iraq with the 101st Airborne Division. Bishop’s name already adorns the playground at the site, which is adjacent to Kenny Shields Park.

Public Works will continue removing pavement, divider walls, and playground equipment this week.

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