LOGAN SQUARE — Dog owners in Logan Square are celebrating what they consider to be a good sign that their neighborhood will get a new park for their pooches.
Once a plot of land that served as a lot for abandoned cars and was sometimes used as a campsite by homeless people, the Logan Square Dog Park would be tucked behind a Kennedy Expy. wall largely hidden from drivers on Logan Boulevard and Western Avenue.
"Construction is to begin in the fall!" a group that has been pushing for the park and raising funds say on their website, citing a public meeting with Chicago Park District officials earlier this month.
A Park District spokeswoman did not respond to calls Thursday.
According to LoganSquarist, park officials unveiled construction plans May 1 at a meeting at Haas Park, 2402 N. Washtenaw Ave. Construction is reportedly set to begin once the Park District finalizes plans for landscape architecture at what is now called Park No. 556 and secures pricing.
"There used to be abandoned cars parked there, gang shootings, homeless people, homeless campsites, drug-dealing. I mean, when I look at what we have now, compared to what we had four years ago, I say ah, this is wonderful!" Logan Square Dog Park Committee president Sally Hamann said in August.
For three years Hamann’s group worked toward a goal of raising $75,000, thinking the Park District would match the funds for a total cost of about $150,000. But last year they learned the Park District could not match funds and the price tag for such a large park — about 8,000 square feet and bigger than most city dog parks — was actually $446,000.
That price included paving the land, installing permanent fencing, benches, a two-gated entry, gravel pits, a drainage system, and other Park District requirements for dog-friendly areas, their official name.
Additional money has come through fundraising and the city's open space impact fee.
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