After writing about the lack of lighting at night in the Dog Run last week which I brought up at the Community Board 2 meeting finally addressing (somewhat) Washington Square Park, I, at last, got to the Dog Run at night. Now, my camera, which is decent, does not have the strongest flash so this is actually slightly darker than it is – but only slightly. I think you’ll get the, uh, picture. Dog Run Last Night 8:40 p.m.:
There was one person with her dog in the Dog Run when I got there. She left and then shortly afterwards, a couple came with their dog. I said, “Wow, it’s dark in there.” The gentleman said, “Yeah. They tore down the shed that the light fixture was on.” (This backed up what I was previously told but I did not know the sequence of events in advance of last week’s meeting.) I said, “They should put temporary lighting in, no?” He just shrugged.
Meanwhile, people seem to be letting their dogs run on the grass in the southwest quadrant. I don’t want to ‘out’ them but I think people have to say something to get these things changed — which ought to be changed. (Even if it is calling 311 because hopefully, ultimately, it would get to the attention of the right people.)
The bottom line is, this is not really a 311 issue as Manhattan Borough Parks Chief of Staff Steve Simon stated at the meeting. Of course, he should have said he would look into it vs. the whole ‘call 311’ ruse. This is a Parks Department issue. Someone in the agency is aware of this and it should have been allocated for in the construction plans. It’s not safe and it’s not sanitary. The Dog Run people didn’t want the Dog Run moved from its current location to begin with (they also did not want it to be 24 hours) so if the Parks Department is constructing a new Dog Run and it is a legitimate piece of the park, then they must take care of it. It’s similar to when they weren’t going to put in temporary rest rooms while construction was going on and then, after an outcry, they finally did.