Dog owners in Astoria, Queens, have for years suffered dog-run envy. As fancy new runs have popped up around New York, Astoria residents have wondered when they might get their own.
Now, through the participatory budgeting process and public largess, their moment appears to have arrived. Local officials recently announced that they had pooled enough money to convert a basketball court under the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge into a dog run.
But many residents, including some in the vanguard of the yearslong lobby for the run, were stunned by the estimated price tag: $1 million.
“I didn’t trust my ears initially,” Erin Kirby, media and marketing secretary for the Astoria Dog Owners Association, said. “We were shocked by that.”
City officials said the projected cost was in line with the budgets of other recently built dog runs. Still, for many Astorians the estimate has been a bittersweet introduction to the high costs of capital projects in the city.
Thursday, October 8, 2015
Dog run in Astoria to cost $1M
Posted by Queens Crapper at 12:22 AM
Labels: Astoria, capital budget, dog run, funding, Triboro Bridge
And after one year it will look like crap! Use the $million for something else like education or pedestrian safety or senior citizens. Thus is outrageous!
Dogs are not fucking children, but the people who lobbied for this sure think so.
another outrageous waste of funds and more leisure welfare for the privileged few who just moved here. I can name 10 parks that could have used this million to fix hazardous sidewalks, playgrounds, maybe replace some of that cancerous matting that kids play on or inspect some trees that might drop a branch unexpectedly (Remember that woman in Kissena a year ago) than to give it to oblivious selfish dumbshits and their thousand dollar toy dogs.
George the atheist describe this with articulate fury a few days ago.
the tale of two cities continues...
The NYC Parks Department continues to rip off the people of New York City. The prices they charge for doing necessary work in our parks is ridiculous.
Of course this amount of money is ridiculous when you think so many other more important issues can use that type of money. You can certainly build a nice dog run for a hell of a lot less.
As for the comment are "dogs are not fucking children", as an animal lover and a dog owner, I would take dogs any day over fucking asshole human beings who are bent on destruction of our world and especially bratty NYC obnoxious children.
Otherwise I agree that this amount of money is outrageous.
Reminds me of Crowleys almost million dollar bocce ball court redo at Juniper Park. All that $ pissed away on nothing.
More proof that New York City is going to the dogs!
Maybe they're right about Western society in the Middle East.
It has gotten a trifle corrupt, hasn't it?
We need an investigation of NYC Parks' Capital projects, outrageous! And Joe Moretti's comments speaks volumes of how too many dog owners view their priorities.
NYC parks has one of the smallest budgets of city agencies.
Not saying don't investigate.
there are much larger fish to fry!
We had a real free press
They would do some REAL research and find and expose all the waste and corruption...
talk about special interest group
Hey hey, is not the dog owners or the bocce players.
Whoever is approving these kind of outrageous expenditures should be investigated.
I should have elaborated more on the current culture of dog owning. I like dogs too, but I wouldn't dress them in clothing or put them in carriages. And the amount of money spent on this dog run is more than what the city and the moronic parks dept. will spend on the needs of humans.
I would see the justification for this dogrun if dogs could stand upright and speak fluent english.
Don't blame dog owners for the fact that the City needs a million dollars for some flat dirt, a couple of benches and some fencing.
Dogs ahead of people.
Anonymous Anonymous said...
We need an investigation of NYC Parks' Capital projects, outrageous! And Joe Moretti's comments speaks volumes of how too many dog owners view their priorities.
And damn right, when you have a pet, it is a priority asshole hiding behind anonymous. And there is nothing wrong with that.
I am criticizing the amount of money spent on this dog run and the elected officials who gave the okay on such a huge amount of money. The dog owners did not demand a million dollar dog park, it was the powers to be who obviously decided on this and Katz who kicked in $500,000 of that.
"Don't blame dog owners for the fact that the City needs a million dollars for some flat dirt, a couple of benches and some fencing."
This is the correct takeaway. Everyone saying "wow a million dollars could be better spent on _____" doesn't understand that something like a single three-stage light for drivers is probably like $7m, and replacing playgrounds is probably like $2.5m. The city wants to use union work and preferred materials and follow the preposterously over-thought building code to the letter, $1m for a patch of dirt is a fucking bargain around here.
There is no difference between this capital budget and the library capital budget. The people behind this know that they will never get fingered until the public wises up.
Look at the library board - anyone in trouble? No, they were simply removed to force them to get their hands out of the cookie jar. Bad boy! Bad girl! Time out room for you!
The capital budget of this city across the board is deeply suspicious. The state and city insists on doing everything over instead of maintaining it. Maintenance is by far the cheapest way to keep a park or any city asset useful to the public. But nothing is maintained and permitted to run into the ground intentionally.
Look at how they capital infrastructure is handled. Millions for a dock and studies of Vernon Blvd, where no one lives, and nothing for the stores on Steinway Street or to help with traffic where people actually live. All distorted by campaign donations by developers.
But again, they are buying votes. Old Italian guys get bocce courts. They die, so the city makes the bocce courts dog runs and buy the hipster vote - all without blinking an eye.
There is an old adage that the amount of cement in a project is directly proportional to the amount of graft.
This should be an excuse for an investigation on the Queens capital budget allocations.
So when is DuhBlasio going to allow illegals AND dogs to vote in city elections?
"Dogs are not fucking children, but the people who lobbied for this sure think so."
JQ, you are an unfeeling dolt!
Those who keep and care for animals are no longer owners, but Pet Parents.
Free schools and medical care for all kept animals!!
No Dog runs, No Peace!!
This is not about dog runs, its about an out of control squandering if not waste of tax money not to serve the public but to buy votes to get elected.
Councilman Costa Constantinides, “We’re hoping it comes under budget.” (Not the sharpest knife in the drawer to hint that it might be well over a million at the same moment that the community in in an uproar.)
I didn’t trust my ears initially,” Erin Kirby, media and marketing secretary for the Astoria Dog Owners Association, said. “We were shocked by that.” We’d prefer not to spend a million dollars,” Ms. Kirby said. “But we trust our officials to come up with accurate estimates.” (She is in an express lane for an community board appointment no doubt.)
Officials said their rule of thumb was that publicly financed dog runs in the city cost between $600,000 and $800,000 in New York, and based on that, they arrived at the $1 million figure. They said they had no further itemization of the potential costs. (Those are people I trust with my hard earned taxes – how about you?)
Bottom line – not for dogs, but a tweeding exercise with our taxes towards dog owners.
"The city wants to use union work and preferred materials and follow the preposterously over-thought building code to the letter"
Interestingly enough building permits for mcmansions are no problem, even if is contrary to zoning laws. Talk about double standards.
The dogs take precedence over children, the elderly and youth? Only in this city.
What about providing youth (no Italians playing stupid Boccie Ball) with healthy drug free places to hang out?
How many senor citizen centers have closed down leaving them without a place where to hang out?
I say fuck the dog and their owners, go to a private place with your beast, pay the price for your little pleasure, providing these animals with an expensive place where to play is not a priority.
Is like giving bicycle riders more rights than to pedestrians.
4' high chain link fence should cost no more than $30 a liner foot, installed. Say you want to pen in an area 100' x 200', thats 600' of length, so $1,800.
And, the whole thing can be done in the weekend.
Let's not forget that basketball court where the dog run will be was fairly recently redone - so the money that went into it is being thrown away.
They could fence off a spot in astoria park and have a door run there. Do it near an existing fountain or pipe and much of the work is already done.
But hey annoying greeks live around the park and they don't want any dogs nearby... let's stick them under a bridge instead, where many dogs are scared by the rattling and heavy traffic. And hey, getting rid of a basketball court? Great - less black people. That's how these idiots think in astoria...
Joe Moretti - you nailed it.
"4' high chain link fence should cost no more than $30 a liner foot, installed."
You are missing the point. The dogs do not care about the aesthetics, the owners do. They want a nice place that is easy on the eyes so they can comfortably sit and drink their lattes, read their NY Times and chat with other dog owners about how horrible the city treats them and their mutts compared to the kids and parents who utilize the park.
I'd love to check and see how many of the dogs actually have licenses.
And the nitwits are still waxing poetic over the Peter Vallone Sr Entertainment Center at the diving pool that is busy ballooning from $1 million to $5 million to $10 million that seats maybe 100 people with good sight lines and is mere feet from the largest public pool in the city.
I can understand why this is proposed (a Vallone legacy project? - but you already have one from the perpetually stunted community board - isn't that enough of a momento from this distinguished lawmaker who got nowhere once he stepped out of Astoria and into the real world?).
No one understands how anyone in that community, with a straight face, can justify it.
We need an investigation of the capital budget in Queens. Now!
All recent midwestern transplants - you know the type - since they will not post here and tell us why we are losers in their world go ahead over to their blog and introduce them to New Yorkers - real New Yorkers - you know, the ones that pay the taxes and endure shitty services so these kids can cluelessly get tweeded to perpetuate the a*holes that run things around here.
Sort of reminds us of Hunters Point and Dutch Kills. Astoria is next.
talk about piles of crap
If a dog run is created on Astoria Park property then the dog owners would have to give up their 9pm-9am off-leash privileges. They don't want to make that exchange.
oh, so lets spend a million.... makes sense.
That bocce ball court in Astoria Park, down by Shore Boulevard right between the WW I monument and the Hellgate Bridge . I have NEVER EVER seen anyone using it in the years of its existence. It might make a nice dog run, no? Maybe expand it a little?
"4' high chain link fence should cost no more than $30 a liner foot, installed. Say you want to pen in an area 100' x 200', thats 600' of length, so $1,800.
And, the whole thing can be done in the weekend."
Keep dreaming. (Also that's $18,000 but who's counting) The last TEMPORARY chainlink fence I saw get put up on a city job, about 50lf, was $8,000 in union P&L, at least $10,000 in engineering and expediting, and probably another $2,000-$4,000 in permits. This was for 50lf of 8' tall chain link fencing for 6 weeks at a school.
Astoria dog owners. That unused bocce ball court mentioned above is much, much more serene and scenic than a dog run under the nerve-wracking cacophonous Triborough bridge underpass. Get Constantinides and Katz to spend the dough there. Speak up, admit the error, and save the taxpayers some dough.
From the hipster-developer-landlord shill We Heart Astoria.
Read this and gag. Development brings in new people - makes new vitality and a new vibe - and helps landlords as well as a new pool of clueless to be taken advantage of by the politicians.
It’s a great time to be a dog owner in Astoria! We’ve already shared the scoop about a hip new doggie cafe, and now, even bigger news: Our local officials recently announced that $1 Million is being allocated to build a dog run in our neighborhood after the project received community support in last April’s Participatory Budgeting vote.
The plan is to convert the Triboro Lot C under the RFK Bridge, which is currently empty, into a space for dogs to play safely. Council Member Costa Constantinides and Queens Borough President Melinda Katz gathered a group of Astoria dog lovers together to share the exciting news that they will both be contributing $500,000 from their 2016 Fiscal Year budgets to the project.
From Constantinides: “Building a new dog run will bring great benefits to the entire community. This lot will be a designated place where dogs can play safely and share full enjoyment with their owners. I am especially proud to know that our residents selected this project through Participatory Budgeting and that the community showed support for it.”
Borough President Katz added: “In a borough of families, dogs are very much a part of many New York families’ lives. The Astoria Dog Park will become the newest public treasure in the neighborhood offering a safe environment for families to enjoy with their four-legged family members.”
Major props to the Astoria Dog Owners Association, Astoria Park Alliance, and Old Astoria Neighborhood Association, as they played a key role in rallying community support during the voting period. It’s incredible to see so many neighborhood folks coming together for a positive cause!
For more information, check out the official press release.
A million not bad for a group that has been around for less than a year.
How long have you been waiting for a new school for your kid?
@We Heart Astoria...Hip doggie cafe?!!!
I Repeat,Dogs are not fucking children nor do they have the cognizance to appreciate artisan dining. You want proof, dogs eat anything that falls on the ground. One time I spilled a half gallon of tomato sauce and that mutt, a collie, licked the whole thing up in 6 minutes.
If this is what is revitalization is, then a big ass day of reckoning is coming for these oblivious dickheads.
Speak up, admit the error, and save the taxpayers some dough.
Why should they - generation entitlement will not do any such thing. Read the WeHeartAstoria drivel - the space is not being used (well the black folk use it as a basketball court).
Not sure why they repeated (in good party soldier tradition - without thought) why "it would be good for the community" and "why its a neighborhood "treasure" even if it squanders a lot of treasure to get there.
And what the hell is the "Old Astoria Neighborhood Assoc" except another paper shill for development and politicians that can be "quoted" to demonstrate "neighborhood support." Remember C.H.O.K.E. a few years back run by some super or the like that got $100,000 from Gianarais (if memory serves us correctly)
What we see is a clumsy effort to replicate the previous generation of non-entities stranglehold on the community. Will not work.
These guys - in office and those cultivated to support the same - don't have nearly the moxie of the Old Guard. Sort of like comparing the Iraqi Army of today with the Republican Guard under Saddam.
We can start by going back to the dog run from time and see how our taxes are being applied.
The fun has just begun!
Despite large sums of money spent, Astoria's parks continue to under perform compared to the rest of the city - only stat higher than average are the complaints.
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