Moorestown Mayor’s Column: Dog Park approved

Mayor Phil Garwood

I am excited to announce that in an ongoing effort to give our community the most open and responsive government possible, The Moorestown Sun has given me space to communicate with my neighbors. This will be the first of many Mayor’s Corner letters, and this column will be used to address specific issues, update you on the actions of Town Council, and let you know of upcoming events in our town.

This week, I would like to share some exciting news for our town from the county level. Last week, the Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders moved to approve a grant in the amount of $180,000 for the construction of a proposed dog park here in Moorestown. When Deputy Mayor Victoria Napolitano and I first ran for office, a number of residents mentioned they would love to have a space where they could take their four-legged friends to play and exercise off leash. We heard you loud and clear, and last fall, we started the process to make this idea a reality.

The grant, which was issued as part of the Burlington County Municipal Park Development Program, will help fund a complete project at Swedes Run on Westfield Road. Our dog park will include two state-of-the-art enclosures, one for large dogs and one for small dogs under 35 pounds; agility equipment; a shaded picnic pavilion; bicycle racks; walking trails; informational kiosks; and the planting of new trees. Additionally, the historical significance of the nearby Swedes Run Barn will be memorialized, as the grant includes the addition of signage on the barn’s history and a new sign marking the 130-acre tract of preserved open space.

From their commitment to the Burlington County Animal Shelter to projects like this dog park, it’s clear that the Freeholder Board agrees with Town Council that dogs are more than just animals to many of us — they are parts of our family.

This dog park will be enjoyed for years to come, and when completed, will be a fantastic crossroads of recreation, open space, and history. As your Mayor, I’m proud we are partnering with the County yet again to deliver results to our taxpayers and improve the quality of life for our community; as a pet owner myself, I look forward to getting out there with my own dog and putting this facility to good use.