DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) – Slurping, barking and running can be heard at almost any time of the day at one Durham dog park.
Stuart Robinson goes out of his way just to drive there with his dog Janet.
“She was a rescue and really needed a lot of socialization time with people and dogs in order to come out of her shell,” he said. “And that wouldn’t have happened if we didn’t have Northgate Dog Park here for her.”
Robinson started a petition to keep the park open as the fences were set to come down.
Durham’s Northgate Dog Park is closing permanently on Monday. The city cites poor drainage, flooding and high use as factors.
Parks and Recreation mentioned it tried to fix muddy conditions almost ten years ago, and it was too expensive and too costly to the environment.
But Renee McQuaig said she hasn’t noticed an issue.
“It sucks,” the Northgate Dog Park user said. “This park is so heavily used and so many people depend on it. So many dogs depend on it.”
In its place, the city opened Rock Quarry Dog Park less than a mile away. But Lori Phillips said it’s too far of a walk as she has a physical disability. She also enjoys the convenience of Northgate.
“I don’t have to worry about my scooter or walking up a hill or being in bed tomorrow because I’m hurting,” the park-goer said.
So far, Robinson’s petition has gathered nearly 100 signatures in three days.
“I think it’ll be stressful for all the working families here who rely on the dog park to have a quick way to exercise their dogs after work,” he said.
Parks and Recreation said the old park will be converted into open green space.
CBS 17 asked multiple Durham spokespeople if the city is aware of the petition to save the park and if there’s a chance it could remain open, but we have not heard back as of Monday night.