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Plum, county developing leash-free area for dogs at Boyce Park by fall

Michael DiVittorio
| Wednesday, April 11, 2018, 4:18 p.m.
Allison Wade and her 10-month-old Rottweiler, Apollo, outside her parents’ home in Plum. Wade is leading an effort to get a dog park in the borough.
Allison Wade and her 10-month-old Rottweiler, Apollo, outside her parents’ home in Plum. Wade is leading an effort to get a dog park in the borough.

Allison Wade's dream of having a leash-free dog park in Plum will come true in the fall.

“I am so excited that this idea has become a reality,” said the Plum resident who spearheaded a drive for a dog park in the borough. “It has been a lot of work, but well worth it.”

Plum is partnering with Allegheny County to build two leash-free areas — only one will be open at a time — for dogs at Boyce Park. The estimated $80,000 to $100,000 cost of construction for design and installation of water lines and fencing will be split by the borough and county. The county will maintain the sites.

“The original plan was for one dog park,” Plum Councilman John Anderson said. “When we realized the general practice is to have two because of the wear and tear, we agreed to expand the project.”

County parks Director Andy Baechle said the most likely scenario is one park will be built this year and the second in 2019. When one is being reseeded and recovering from use, the other will be open. The county has similar alternating leash-free dog areas in its North and South parks.

The Plum parks — each including separate areas for large and small dogs — will be built near Boyce's lower baseball field by the basketball courts off New Texas Road.

The plan is what Wade envisioned when she pitched her idea to Plum officials and started a grassroots fundraising campaign to bring a dog park to the borough a little over a year ago. She ended up raising about $10,000 through several events and a campaign. Her Facebook page, “Dog Park for Plum Borough,” attracted 1,370 members.

“I think it is wonderful that we will have these,” member Michelle Olsavsky said on the social media site. “My dogs are my children and I'm very happy that we will have a playground for them where they can get exercise and make friends.”

Michael DiVittorio is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-871-2367, or via Twitter @MikeJdiVittorio.

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