Construction Report: DOT begins renovations at the 2nd Ave. Dog Park

Published: Aug. 30, 2023 at 10:11 AM AKDT
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FAIRBANKS, Alaska (KTVF) - While projects from the Department of Transportation (DOT) often impact the places we drive, bike and walk, sometimes they impact the places we park.

Recently, DOT began renovations at the 2nd Avenue Dog Park parking lot where many in the community go to let their furry friends stretch their legs. While it’s helpful to have a place where pets can prance about, large puddles and lots of mud often bring with them a much needed car cleaning and bath for our canine companions.

Due to ongoing issues at the 2nd Avenue Dog Park, the Fairbanks Area Surface Transportation Planning Organization has chosen to use their funds to improve the dog park’s parking lot.

“Fast Planning is a metropolitan planning organization and federal law requires one of those for any community over a certain size,” said John Perreault, spokesperson for DOT.

The fast planning organization exists as a partner to government but is not a direct part of the municipal government. The members of Fast Planning chose to use their funds on this particular parking lot because of its popularity and also because it has suffered from poor drainage for years.

Perreault explains, “One of the big issues that users were having was potholing in the parking lot, which was not only making a poor driving experience, but it was also creating a great deal of puddles. In particular there was a huge puddle that would form right near the entrance.”

Despite the parks popularity, those degradations and puddles might have caused some residents to avoid utilizing the park.

Perreault adds, “What we’re seeing behind us is a repaving and grading of the parking lot and the approach driveway as well as redoing about 200 feet of the root torn up sidewalks alongside the park.”

While road traffic is not impacted by the project, this does mean that pedestrians have lost access to a path. “The river walk bike path will be closed from the parking lot of the Carlson Center in the west all the way to the Hap Ryder Riverfront Theatre to the east,” said Perreault.

The project will be finished in September, but for the time being, pedestrians can still access the area using sidewalks along Second Avenue and dog owners can still access the park by using a detour parking lot to the west.