Off-Leash Areas (OLAs) FAQs
|What neighborhood parks have new temporary off-leash areas (OLAs)?
300 Erbes Road
Thousand Oaks, CA 91362
3295 Bear Creek Drive
Newbury Park, CA 91320
||Walnut Grove Park
400 Windtree Avenue
Thousand Oaks, CA 91360
After District staff conducted community meetings in 2013, attendees requested development of small OLAs as an additional recreational amenity at existing District properties. Staff identified and prioritized nine locations based upon criteria such as geography (spacing from existing dog park and each other), parking availability, and suitability (need, park layout). The first three chosen, Estella, Kimber, and Walnut Grove Parks, best conformed to the prioritization criteria.
|Why were these parks chosen?
Because of public comments regarding potential neighborhood and park impacts, staff recommended installing temporary OLAs as part of their study. Staff will monitor the temporary OLAs and receive feedback from the public for approximately six months (until Fall 2015). The District will evaluate whether the OLAs will be a positive additional amenity to the District and neighborhood parks they serve.
|Why are the OLAs temporary?
In order for District staff to evaluate future impacts, a 'base-line' survey-of-activity of existing use was conducted in Summer 2014.
|How will staff evaluate impacts to the neighborhood and existing parks?
For the base-line survey-of-activity, at each park, on two weekdays and one weekend day, staff monitored activities from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Activities monitored included park patronage/usage, parking, traffic, and noise.
Near the end of the approximate six-month trial period, staff will conduct another similar site survey at each park to compare use and learn about any changes to park activity. This information will be summarized and compiled with all public comments received. After evaluating all the input, staff will present recommendations for OLAs at a future Board of Directors meeting. If you are interested in information about this future board meeting, please follow www.crpd.org/agendas to review upcoming agendas.
Each temporary OLA consists of minimal and temporary improvements: 6-foot high, temporary chain link fence, temporary vehicle and pedestrian access gates, mutt-mitt dispensers and mutt mitts, and trash cans. If, at the end of the trial period, staff believes the OLAs should be permanent, District staff will propose materials and landscaping which conform to park environment.
|Why the chain link fencing and gates?
After the California State Legislature passed the Water Conservation Act of 2009, CRPD adopted a water conservation policy in March 2014 (www.crpd.org/water). Efforts to conserve water include increasing irrigation efficiency and turf conversion into non-grass landscape material and/or native landscaping in non-essential or not 'active-play or sports' areas. To conserve water and sustain most of the grass and landscaping, irrigation has been turned off in portions of nearly every park. In these areas, the grass will die and the turf will be converted to some other ground cover, such as wood chips. The temporary OLAs are located in the District's proposed turf reduction target areas and will become compacted natural earth surfacing over time.
|Why is the irrigation off? Will there be no grass?
The District will maintain trash receptacles, fencing, and grounds. Additionally, the District is collaborating with the recently-formed Conejo Off-Leash Area Friends (COLA). COLA will assist the District in providing educational seminars, observing OLA activities, making recommendations, and adding OLA Ambassadors. Ambassadors are your neighbors who are volunteering to maintain the mutt mitt dispensers, provide information to the public, and observe and provide additional comments to the District.
|Who will maintain the temporary OLAs?
Thank you in advance for helping to make these temporary OLAs a fun and welcome amenity to our parks. Please contact COLA at firstname.lastname@example.org or you may contact CRPD by email at email@example.com or call (805) 495-6471.
|I would like to help. Who can I contact?
If you have any more questions or would like to make a comment, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (805) 495-6471.
Ventura County Star (March 2015)