Planning Commission reconsidering request to subdivide Oakhurst Dog Park lot

Posted by Dan Whisenhunt April 14, 2015
The location of the Oakhurst Dog Park. Source: Google Maps

The location of the Oakhurst Dog Park. Source: Google Maps

This story has been updated. 

The Decatur Planning Commission will again consider a proposal to subdivide a lot at East Lake Drive so a developer can build single family housing.

That plan has dog lovers howling because it will carve off the wooded area of the park on East Lake Drive. While the city maintains the dog park, it is owned by the Boys & Girls Club, which leases it to the city for $1 a year. The Boys & Girls Club wants to redirect proceeds from the sale back into its programming. The Planning Commission tabled the idea in December amid protests from the neighborhood.

Decatur resident Lee Goldsmith has been the pack leader rallying neighbors against the idea.

“We, certain concerned members of the Oakhurst Dog Park community, were under the impression that the proposed subdivision of the forested part of the dog park had been put on the back burner until a ‘better solution’ could be found,” Goldsmith said in February. “We found out late last week that the Boys & Girls club, along with the developer, Weaver Capitol, is reintroducing the motion to subdivide, eliminate most of the trees, and build two houses.”

Planning commissioners were going to consider the issue at their April 14 meeting. Goldsmith had told Decaturish there would be representation from people who are opposed to the idea.

“We’re going to have 40 to 80 people there, probably,” he said.

On Tuesday afternoon, Goldsmith reported that the developer has asked for a deferral to the May 12 meeting.

There’s a webpage devoted to the topic of saving the Dog Park,, and the issue has received media attention here and elsewhere.

But why so much fuss over a dog park?

“I’m obviously biased, but … we have a lot of people in the neighborhood who don’t even have dogs who support us,” Goldsmith said.

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