- 1) Hello Mr. Searle,
I think that a dog park should be set-up in Benny park. Many people have dogs in the area and some go to that park and let their dogs run free, without a leech.
I have 2 dogs myself but a protected area for them would be great since I do not agree to have the dogs run anywhere in the park.
Much needed improvement to our neighborhood!
2) Bonjour M. Searle,
J’ai un chien qui, comme tous les chiens, adore courir. Malheureusement, le petit parc en chiens situé en bordure du parc Loyola est beaucoup trop petit et n’encourage pas les chiens à courir avec le gravier – d’ailleurs, il est pratiquement toujours vide aussi.
Alors, j’appuie entièrement votre démarche d’offrir aux nombreux chiens de notre quartier la possibilité d’avoir une aire d’exercice adéquate et je suis certaine que l’Université Concordia en serait vraiment ravie puisque leur terrain de football / soccer (près du jardin & des résidences) est souvent utilisé à cet escient.
Merci de votre implication
3) Dear Jeremy Searle,
I do support your initiative to create a dog park area in Gilbert Layton
Park, as long as there is a protected small dog area within and the park
is situated in the relatively vacant and unused land on the West side,
along Coronation street.
As for your idea concerning bike lanes and painted, Universal Bicycle
Boxes which permits and even encourages bike riders to work their way up
ahead of vehicular traffic at stop light intersections – I have to most
strenuously challenge your assumptions about the need, the efficacy and
the safety of such projects.
The key assumption that I believe puts the entire notion into question is
the one you posit in your recently-delivered brochure:
“When the bicycles are at the front (ahead of vehicular traffic), they
start just as fast as the cars and certainly faster than automatic cars.”
(brackets added for clarity)
I have to ask where you are getting these assumptions from?
Your brochure does not mention any related studies, nor does it list any
links to peer-reviewed research that would back up this, frankly,
If every biker-rider was an experienced, hormonally pumped up
eigtheen-to-forty-year-old with a good quality bicycle and an excellent
sense of the road this might be an assumption to build on. Reality
demonstrates conclusively, even to the casual observer, that your
assumptions are very far from reality.
On a typical day, at a typical intersection, you have small kids on bikes,
seniors, dilettante Bixi-users, and pretty much every kind of user but
quite few fit and ready cyclists ready to respond to changing traffic
lights and the vagaries of vehicular traffic. What you describe in your
pamphlet is a recipe for accidents, traffic congestion, driver anger and
frustration and achieves none of your stated goals.
Cars and bikes simply do not go together in urban situations where the
need to share the road has not been part of traffic planning from the very
beginning. Anyone visiting Amsterdam would immediately notice how the
broad streets and major thoroughfares have been designed to accommodate
both vehicular and bike traffic. They would also notice how diligently
bike riders obey traffic indications and how these indications have been
designed to be mindful of the clear and safe passage of both bikes and
What your brochure describes is a bandaid measure that puts cyclists in
danger from impatient and frustrated vehicle drivers and drivers in danger
of threatened, insecure cyclists. Your Universal Bicycle Boxes do nothing
but slow down vehicular traffic even more than it is currently and puts
the bike riding community at even greater risk by continuing to mingle
both modes of transport on the same streets.
What you SHOULD be looking at is a system that simply separates the two
modes of transport.
If you consider the major West/East and North South corridors, you might
discover that certain streets lend themselves better to accommodating bike
traffic safely, than others.
For one example, Terrebone is a relatively quiet, albeit well-used
West/East corridor in N.D.G.. One might consider designating the PARKING
LANE on either the north or south side exclusively and permanently for
two-way bike traffic between Girouard and St. Ignatius. You could create
or consolidate feeder routes to these kind of permanent bike routes so
that they become part of the urban layout.
How do you compensate home-owners who park on these routes?
You find them parking elsewhere close-by – parking that is designated for
them because you are asking them to give up the space closest to them.
That’s only fair. And, of course, you continue to provide them access to
their own garages and parking strips where they exist with appropriate
warnings to bike users.
I am making this suggestion off the top of my head but as a
self-proclaimed expert in traffic and road safety I’m sure you could come
up with many better examples of designated lanes on roads and streets that
could be devoted exclusively and permanently to bicycle traffic where
needed and called for.
While we are on the subject of bike lanes and traffic safety – are you
aware of the situation at Decarie and de Maisonneuve? This might not be in
your area of representation but if it is – what genius devised the bike
lane cross-over from de Maisonneuve to Decarie?
You start with a two-way bike lane on the south side of de Maisonneuve
and, as you approach Decarie, instead of using the vacant land available
to extend the bike lane to the Decarie/de Maisonneuve intersection,
someone decided to direct the bike lane so that it crosses de Maisonneuve
over to the North side for about 75 feet, before it continues again, on
the south side of de Maisonneuve to the east of Decarie.
This cross-over requires a traffic light on the access road for cars
crossing from Decarie to continue on to de Maisonneuve, at exactly the
point in the road where there should be free and clear access.
This design is absurd, dangerous and needlessly complex given what was
already in place.
Before you start planning inefficient and retrograde Universal Bicycle
Boxes you should be looking at the problems that exist today and correct
them – or encourage your city councillor colleagues to get their houses in
Your approach is piece-meal – you are not looking at the big picture and
you are not looking at permanent solutions that do not disadvantage one
group of tax-paying citizens in favour of another. Putting bikes ahead of
vehicular traffic at intersections is dangerous, solves nothing and
creates a class system of transport that is unfair and disrespectful.
A copy of this has been posted on my Facebook page.
C’est avec plaisir que je vous donne mon avis sur la question des aires destinées à nos chiens.
Nous sommes propriétaires d’un chien que nous sortons chaque jour au parc Trenholme ou dans les environs.
Il serait effectivement souhaitable que d’autres lieux dédiés aux chiens ouvrent leur portes étant donné le grand nombre de chiens présents dans le quartier.
A certaines heures de la journée, je n’ose y aller car ils sont en grand nombre, ce qui favorise des comportements agressifs et désagréables pour tout le monde.
J’ajouterai que les poubelles du quartier débordent souvent et que les petits sacs de déjection se retrouvent sur les lieux publics, ce qui nuit à toute la population.
Peut être serait il judicieux d’en installer en plus grand nombre et de les vider plus fréquemment.
Merci de m’avoir laissée m’exprimer sur ce sujet, bonne continuation dans votre projet
5) Hi Jeremy,
A few things about dogs in NDG.
There are dog owners of all ages in NDG, from very young to very old.
I feel as if we are considered an afterthought or an nuisance to police and the city. Facilities for dogs are shoe-horned into the tightest places and are not well thought out.
Meanwhile there are huge swathes of green space taken up by sports facilities that are lightly used, and only for a few months of the year.
A few schools have fields that accommodate multiple soccer fields and are ridiculously large for a school yard; why not fence of a portion when soccer isn’t in session for dogs to run?
There are problems in dog parks that have gravel. Only big dogs can handle that type of surface.
Small dog parks don’t allow dogs running room, and encourages territorial behaviour. Encouraging walking by owners gives owners a chance to exercise, and keeps the dogs from becoming territorial.
Keep trees to the edges and keep benches out, unless you have a large area for dogs to run. If there area is large enough there should be no problem for growing grass.
There aren’t enough garbage cans on streets.
There should be garbage cans placed at the end of alleys, one of the biggest dog walking areas in the area.
Police should stop harassing dog owners who frequent Benny Park a place where dogs, kids and people all mingle with no problems and because it isn’t fenced, all dogs are completely under control by owners.
I live on Bessborough, and it would be nice if there were a place around Grand and Fielding. There are strange unused areas on the South side of the street that can be better utilized.
NDG needs a cohesive plan for the entire borough to accommodate dogs and their tax paying owners!
6)I do not have a dog but I am an animal lover. Indeed, Dog runs should be built for those having a friend on 4 legs.
7) Following our telephone conversation I am against Pit Bull and Dobereman because these dogs are dangerous ande I personally got bitten by one of these dogs; do we have to wait thatoneof these dogs kill somebody in order to take mesures to correct the situation
Thank you very much
8) Dear Mr. Searle,
Thank you very much for your concern on the dog issues. Dogs, as our best friends and companions need good exercise the same as we, people, do. I am strongly supporting new dog runs in Montreal parks. As you said, dogs and their owners are the most significant park users. Montreal and probably the whole Quebec province are far behind the rest of Canada on this problem. Now there are too few spaces for dogs not to mention that they are TOO small, especially the one on the corner on Fielding and Patricia. Such size of a dog’s space is just a disease and parasite incubator and dispenser. Many dog owners just avoid them. I hope we will see more reasonable dog runs in our parks in the near future.
9) Mr. Searle,
I find it outrageous that you are suggesting investing in park space for the dogs of NDG. In my neighbourhood in the western part of NDG, there is dog excrement everywhere. Mostly, the excrement has been neatly put in a little black bag but simply left on the sidewalk or the grass. For some reason, they are also found hanging on fences, especially in Loyola Park. Dog owners seem to believe that once the excrement has been put in a bag, it can be left anywhere.
I am not currently a dog owner but I have been. I have no particular opposition to dog runs, but privileges have to be earned. PLEASE! First invest in more garbages, more signs, more fines, more surveillance, more cleaning and whatever might help make our neighbourhood cleaner. Once we see dog owners taking responsibility, give them all the dog runs they want.
10) Good afternoon Mr. Searle,
Further to the flyer that I received in the mail this week, regarding the installation of additional dog runs in NDG, although I think that more runs are required, I think the priority should be in improving the services at the current dog parks.
I don’t know whether or not you own a dog, but let me explain to you how dog parks work. The owners of aggressive dogs “rule” the parks and those of us with non-aggressive dogs are at their mercy. We can’t enjoy the parks when certain dogs are present or run the risk of our own non-aggressive dogs being attacked/injured.
The dog park at Girouard Park is a perfect example of a great park, with all of the necessary facilities, i.e. running water, shade, benches, shovels, composting bins…., however, many dog owners avoid this park like the plague because of aggressive dogs. My own dogs have been attacked there twice so I no longer go to this park. That being said, I cannot benefit from this park and am forced to use the park at Park Row East/Park Row West, which has nothing except two picnic tables and two open garbage bins for waste, strategically located between the two enclosures at the entrances to the park, so that you practically have your face in the garbage bins when taking off your dog’s leash, whilst side-stepping the dog feces which have spilled out of said overflowing open bins.
I could go on and on but the emails hereunder, compete with photos, pretty much say it all and not surprisingly it has been almost six months and still no reply.
11) Hello Jeremy,
The idea of more dog runs in NDG parks is a bad one, and I strongly oppose it. Dog runs smell and are noisy (due to barking). As such, they degrade the adjacent neighborhood. Furthermore, they occupy spaces which would otherwise be enjoyed by humans.
As you say, dog owners make significant use of our parks, but they often disregard laws when doing so. In the Gilbert Layton Park, for example, they commonly let their dogs run unleashed despite the numerous signs clearly stating that this is prohibited.
Please take these views into consideration. I speak for many, many others.
We received your leaflets, and I am happy to have an opportunity to give my thoughts. Parc William-Hurst (corner of Grand & Terrebonne) seems to be a de facto off-leash park, and I really don’t appreciate it. It is a park frequented by lots of families with young children (perhaps younger than most parks because the play area is fenced in and the older-child structure is a bit limited).
I have no objection to converting some of the grassy field into an off-leash area – that part of the park is off-limits to kids anyhow because of the dogs running around. I don’t really have an opinion on whether Gilbert and Loyola should have dog runs, but I think William-Hurst should because it is clear that dog owners have already claimed the area for themselves and their pets.
Je suis entièrement d’accord pour qu’il y ait plus de parcs à chiens pour nos petits compagnons à 4 pattes.
Eux aussi méritent de courir et jouer dans un bel environnement optimal et sécuritaire, propre et bien entretenu.
Les animaux font partie intégrante de nos vie et méritent eux aussi des services adéquats.
Merci pour eux
14) I fully support your proposal to add additional dog parks in Loyola and Gilbert Layton Parks.
I hope that they will be large spaces with grass, long enough for dogs to run and play, unlike the cramped and depressing so-called dog park on Patricia. I wouldn’t take my dog’s worst enemy to that park, it looks like it was designed to drive dogs (and their owners) mad.
Dozens of people walk their dogs through Loyola and Gilbert Layton Park every day, at all hours. This will continue to be the case whether we have dog parks or not. For those people who are afraid of dogs, concerned about safety, or who just don’t like dogs, a dog park is the best solution. At least then the “dog action” will be confined to that space we are less likely to bother the dog-haters.
Thank you for working on behalf of NDG’s residents and their canine friends!
15) Bonjour Monsieur,
votre pamphlet arrive à temps, car ayant habité a Toronto, j’ai toujours trouve cette idée très bonne, et je circule tous les jours à vélo. Aussi je vous encourage à la présenter au conseil municipal, et je vous suggère de le mettre en place à l’intersection Sherbrooke/Cavendish.
Une autre suggestion est de modifier le feu rouge mis en place sur de Maisonneuve , à l’ouest de Décarie: en effet il est très long au rouge inutilement pour les cyclistes, alors que le feu est vert pour les voitures venant de la rue de Maisonneuve. En plus il n’y quasiment pas de circulation.
Une suggestion serait de remplacer ce feu ( combien a-t-il coûté ? ) par un Arrêt , qui fluidifierait la circulation des vélos et des voitures.
Merci de prendre le temps de communiquer avec les citoyens, mais vous pourriez utiliser du papier moins cher et plus écologique. La couleur me semble aussi superflue. Pourquoi pas un envoi courriel ?
16) Monsieur Searle,
J’espère que dans un avenir rapproché, il y aura amélioration. Ceci est plus URGENT qu’un parc à chien je crois.
17) Hello Mr. Searle,
Our opinion regarding dog runs in Loyola and Gilbert parks is a no. That would bring more problems because dog owners are sometimes irresponsible. Last winter a dog (Rupert) went after my husband to attack him. The incident took place in Loyola park proximity and the owner didn’t move a finger to stop his pet, nor the big dog had a leash. We won’t support the idea, but we appreciate your survey.
18) Hi Jeremy,
I have received your flyers and I should tell you : you got the right house.
1.We own a dog and we think that it is absolutely important to add dog runs in Loyola and Gilbert Layton parks. Moreover, bigger spaces for dogs to be safe . Patricia park dog run is just too small and at night it could be scary.
Our dog was beaten by another dog and since then we never came back. We wonder why in NDG where we have such a big population of dogs we cannot have bigger and nicer spaces?
Have you ever been in Des pins street dog park? It is absolutely amazing! Could we dream about having something similar?
19) I am not in favour of another Dog fenced in area. There are dog fenced in areas in Trenholm and Patricia parks. Loyola park has duplexes on one side and apartments on another plus two schools.
These dog fenced in area discourage some people from using the parks. I much prefer people first as a criteria. I am not a dog hater and I do walk my 40 kilo dog always on a short leash several times a day around Loyola Park constantly trying to avoid dogs on the loose. I have lost two dogs that were bitten by dogs off the leash while mine was on one. Too bad some dog owners believe that the law does not apply to them.
We have more urgent needs to spend our money.
20) Dear Jeremy,
I am a frequent user of the dog run in Patricia Park. I agree with you that there should be a larger dog run in Loyola Park.
20) Cher Monsieur Searle,
Il n’y a pas si longtemps, vous nous avez envoyé à la maison deux pamphlets pour nous demander ce que nous pensions des boîtes à vélos aux intersections ainsi que pour des espaces aménagés pour les chiens dans le parc Loyola.
We received your flyers yesterday and I just wanted to give you my opinion on dog runs as a dog owner.
I have two small dogs. I never take them to dog parks or runs. I know too many people whose dogs have been bitten and needed extensive vet care from dangerous dogs at these dog parks.
The people who own these dogs let them bark at all hours and never offer to pay for medical bills if their dog harms another.
I live one block away from the dog park in Trenholme park on Park Row East.
I can hear the dogs barking from 6 am to way past 10 pm some nights. My daughter rented the an apartment adjacent to the park. She worked nights and got to bed at 3 am. The dogs would start barking first light. She had to move to get peace and quiet to sleep. I have no problem with the city installing new dog runs or parks for those who are responsible enough to use them, however, I think it is time that inspectors visit these dog parks and that warnings and then tickets are given to those irresponsible owners who let their dogs bark incessantly. They should have a muzzle if their excitement cannot be controlled, or if they are a danger to other dogs. And all of them should have dog licences.
That is my opinion as a 40 year resident of NDG.