A group of Violet Township residents is hoping their community leaders will throw them a bone in the form of support for a new dog park.

A group of Violet Township residents is hoping their community leaders will throw them a bone in the form of support for a new dog park.

Trustees' chairman Terry Dunlap said the group is far from barking up the wrong tree.

"I think it might be a good idea," Dunlap said. "We just need some more information."

Led by Kingfisher Lane resident Carolyn Adams, the group made a presentation to the trustees at last week's meeting.

Adams suggested that about five acres of a 34-acre site on Busey Road be designated as a dog park. The township recently acquired the site between Hill and Diley roads and plans to develop it into a community park.

Dog parks have become more popular in central Ohio in the past few years, with a number of communities opening them, including Columbus, Gahanna and Westerville. The parks are typically fenced and provide a designated area where dog owners can allow their pets to run off-leash.

"It's a benefit to the community in many ways other than just exercising a dog," Adams said. "The research does show it has an influence on property values. I think another very important benefit is that they make better neighbors of dogs. When dogs are well-socialized, they tend to be less noisy and less aggressive.

"I would like to see Violet Township as a leader and be the first to recognize this is a really good thing," Adams said.

The township is currently developing a master plan for the park site. Dunlap said some research needs to be done to see if there is enough room for a dog park there and if the restrictions put on the land by the previous owner will accommodate one.

"We think it's a pretty good idea and we think well give it a shot," he said. "We had no idea there was a need for it in our community. It never came up that a dog needs free play."

Dunlap said trustees also are considering an alternate site for the dog park that is more centrally located within the township. He declined to say precisely where.

In addition to location, there are still other questions left to answer before the township can move forward on such a facility, including the design, cost and management of the park, he added.

Adams said her group is working to answer some of those questions. She said she was pleased with the response she received at last week's trustees' meeting.

"We thought there were some very good comments and questions and we're happy the trustees have asked us to provide them with more information," Adams said. "We were pleased with the response. We didn't feel there was anything negative and we had good support from people at the meeting."

msegaloff

@thisweeknews.com