Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Turn Your Radio On

This morning at 10 o'clock, @Issue on WGXC is all about dog parks. Listen at 90.7 FM or online.

The show's co-hosts, Victor Mendolia and Debora Gilbert, did an extensive pre-interview with one of the show's guests: landscape architect Maryse Beliveau-Nance. The transcript of that interview, which is recommended prep for listening to the show, can be found here. Here's an important excerpt from that interview: "Diversity of use and a high level of foot traffic in the public realm are two factors that make a city "street safe." You eliminate dogs from green spaces, you thin out activities, and opportunities for crime increase. Allowing dogs (on lead) in green spaces and parks is an effective way of providing natural surveillance, reducing crime, reducing the fear of crime, and improving the quality of life."


  1. I thought the show went really well, but keep in mind dog parks and the cemetery are are two different subjects. No one is suggesting the cemetery was or should be a dog park. It is a park and we already have rules concerning controlling a dog if you bring it to the park. A dog park is a place where dogs can run free and be a dog, but it can not satisfy my wifes need for a three and a half mile walk with her dog. I've never noticed walkers not staying on the road, and we would be happy to pay a reasonable fee for permission to walk responsibly in the park with a dog.

  2. Thanks for listening Ed Gump. I agree that the cemetery and a potential dog park are two distinct issues. Unfortunately the Mayor chose to restrict access at the largest green space in Hudson (the cemetery) while at the same time opposing any expenditure by the city for a dog park. Thus making it appear that he is hostile to dogs and their owners and making it seem as if dog owners should ask nothing of the municipality in which they reside and pay taxes.

    There are solutions to both issues, but the Mayor has to have the wherewithal to work out a compromise that everyone can live with. So far his approach seems to be paternalistic and authoritarian. Follow the rules because I said so, and if you don't, you will get nothing.

    These issues have been brought to the forefront by the Mayor's own hand. It was his attempt to ban dogs in 7th Street Park and then the ban at the cemetery, which have made green space access for dogs and dog owners such a pressing issue. While the need for a dog park(s) has been bubbling for some time, the vote by the Council on maintaining the ban at the waterfront and the further restrictions imposed by the Mayor have exacerbated the desire of dog owners to set aside SOME space for them.

    The Mayor could show some real leadership and figure out how to fix a problem that is largely of his own making. Allowing leashed dogs in the cemetery only on roadways or areas without graves is one option. Requiring a paid permit where the fees go toward upkeep might be another. Ending his opposition to a dog park and figuring out how to support the efforts of those who are advocating for one, would go a long way to ending this controversy and moving on to the much more important issues that the city faces.

    With the waterfront plan hopelessly stalled, the emerging affordable housing crisis in Hudson, the crumbling and dangerous Ferry Street Bridge, the mismanagement and code violations at Bliss Tower and all of the other more pressing issues Hudson faces, it is curious that the Mayor has made a war on dogs the top priority for his second term as Mayor. My hope is that he stop this nonsense and get to work on the things that people actually care about and that really matter to their well-being and to the well-being of their families.

  3. Victor, thanks for the additional thoughts and details,especially the last paragraph. I enjoy hearing what a thinking man has to say and hope this "nonsense" will get more people thinking and out to vote.

  4. If only Captain Steve would start a ferry, low tide doggie rides, to the flatts and back. At ebb, those flatts are Hudson's shore, taken by the HRRR.