Lack of Grass Growth delays opening of new dog park on Phillips Street

Although it looks like the grass inside the new dog park on Phillips Street is established, Macon County Parks & Recreation Director Seth Adams explained that the grass is not yet thick enough to withstand wear and tear. The goal is for the new dog park to open by November if the newly sown grass is substantial. 

Deena C. Bouknight – Contributing Writer

Tongues, not tails, have been wagging over why the new dog park on Phillips Street has not opened, even though it was projected to open November 2019. Macon County Parks & Recreation Director Seth Adams said the holdup is the grass. 

“We’ve been waiting for the grass to thicken so that it can withstand the heavy use expected,” said Adams. “The grass has been coming in too thin so we’ve had to re-seed it and try different seeds. It keeps getting better and better and yesterday [Sept. 21] we put down a hydro-seed to try.”

Because the current dog park on the Little Tennessee River Greenway is next to wetlands, it is prone to flooding. 

“And we don’t want this new dog park to turn into a mud pit,” said Adams. “That’s why we are spending so much time making sure the grass is established and thick.” 

Another reason Macon County invested more than $100,000 to build the new dog park, which is on a 7-plus acre tract and is three times larger than the existing dog park, is because the dog park at the Little Tennessee River Greenway is underneath Duke Power transmission lines. 

“The existing park will close down when the new dog park opens,” said Adams. “There will be separate areas for small and large dogs.” Plus, there are restrooms adjacent to the new park and a walking trail around the fenced-in dog park area. 

Adams added, “We’re doing everything we can to get this new dog park opened. We’re hoping for late October or early November.” 

Macon County Parks & Recreation is tasked with managing the new dog park. 

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