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Cyclists and Dog Owners in Dispute Over L.A. Bike Path


A recent plan to extend a cycling path in Los Angeles, California, has divided cyclists and pet parents in the San Fernando Valley. As per the proposed L.A. Bike Path plan, the path would be along the L.A. River but would cut through an off-leash dog park. While dog owners believe the path could cause “chaos,” cyclists believe “it makes sense.”

Proposed bike path cuts through Sepulveda Basin Off-Leash Dog Park

As per CBS News, the Sepulveda Basin dog park extends for 6.35 acres and the proposed bike path would take away only 1.52% — or 0.1 acres — of its area. However, the issue at hand for some pet parents is that it would cut right through the park.

Brittany Dejardo, a passionate dog owner, called the proposed L.A. bike path a “distraction.” She added that it will make the dogs crazy and “cause chaos,” adding that people shouldn’t take away any more from the “big dog side.”

However, according to some cyclists — including John Klein — the plan “makes sense.” Klein stated that the new path can be linked to Oxnard. He added that it seems “pretty easy” and “cost-effective.”

Over 2,000 people are against the proposed route

As per the Los Angeles Times, more than 2,000 pet lovers have joined together to sign an online petition. The virtual advocacy effort was initiated by Miriam Preissal to preserve the park as it is.

In particular, the petition argues that the park is the only one for dogs in three council districts and serves around 876,000 people. It further argues that two bike paths already exist parallel to the park. And, if the new L.A. bike path gets implemented, 22 trees and 4,200 sq. ft. of space will be destroyed.

City Council Member Imelda Padilla shared that the Council’s plan to protect the dog park from residents was to “create fencing.” Padilla added that it would make the area a more “accessible green space resource” for people.

The pet community, however, isn’t alone in their fight. The Sepulveda Basin Wildfire Areas Steering Committee also has concerns about the proposed plan. In a public letter, the committee argued that implementing the new L.A. bike path would reduce capacity of the Basin’s floor by 50% and limit “groundwater recharge potential.”

Government officials want to create paths along the river before 2028, prior to the Summer Olympics. The proposed L.A. bike path is part of the Vision Plan for the basin, which seeks to transform the “2,000-acre floodplain” for the next 25 years.


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