YORKTOWN, N.Y. – Efforts to create a community dog park in Yorktown were first unleashed in 2002, but 10 years later, the park still hasn't been built.
"It's taken time," said David Rocco, president of the Yorktown Community Dog Park, as he tried to drum up public support at the SPCA Walkathon at FDR State Park. "This would be a great place for residents in the region to bring their dogs."
More than 360 town residents are reportedly behind the creation of an off-leash dog park. In 2002, a smaller group petitioned New York State to put a dog run at FDR State Park. That was request was later denied, but in 2007 the group turned to the Yorktown Parks and Recreation Commission for help.
A parcel near the entrance to Donald J. Trump State Park off Old Baldwin Road was identified and the town board lent its support, even offering to split the estimated $8,000 cost to remove asbestos from some dilapidated buildings on the site.
Rocco said a site plan for the dog park was submitted and a lease agreement was supposedly being worked out between the town and New York State.
"The last I heard it was between the lawyers," said Council member Nick Bianco. "I could care less about the buildings. We should just let them have it. I have no problem with what they want to do."
Rocco said representatives from his group were slated to meet with the town parks and recreation commission in a few weeks. He said he was also encouraged by the fact that Linda Cooper, former town supervisor, is now regional director of the New York State Office of Parks and Recreation and Historic Preservation.