Queens, NY – Senator Michael Gianaris, Assemblymember Catherine Nolan and Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer today announced that long-awaited renovations to the Vernon Boulevard Dog Run in Long Island City have begun. The elected officials, along with Queens West Development Corporation (QWDC), New York State Department of Parks and DOG LIC, a local advocacy group, have worked together since last year to make major improvements to the park.
Renovations to the park and dog run include:
• More than double space in dog run from 4,000 square feet to 10,000 square feet;
• Cleaned out, re-graded and leveled-off dog run with new dog-friendly gravel surface;
• New separate fenced-off areas for large and small dogs;
• Drinking fountains for dogs and their owners;
• New lighting;
• New covered trash cans;
• Railings to protect existing trees from dogs;
• Shade structures.
Construction is scheduled to last approximately two weeks after which the dog run will re-open. The shade structures will be added by mid-October.
Senator Gianaris said, “As more young families move to Long Island City, it is important that neighborhood amenities keep up with the positive changes taking place throughout the community. The refurbishment of this dog run is a reflection of Long Island City’s development as a hospitable, animal-loving community. I look forward to seeing western Queens residents and their pets taking advantage of all this new dog run will offer.”
Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan said, “I am pleased that the construction of the Vernon Boulevard dog run is underway. This renovated dog run is much needed in this ever growing community. I like to thank my colleagues Senator Gianaris and Councilmember Van Bramer, along with the Queens West Development Corporation, New York State Department Parks and DOG LIC for their dedication to this project.”
Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer said, “This new dog run will provide a much needed service for the many dog owners in the growing and vibrant neighborhood of Long Island City. Dog owners will now have a newly designed and expanded space where dogs and their best friends can exercise safely in their own back yard. I am proud of this collaboration between local elected officials, state parks, community leaders, and residents, which shows the importance of collaboration and community involvement in achieving great progress. We will continue to work to make the community the best it can be.”
Rose Harvey, New York State Department of Parks Commissioner, said, “State Parks is pleased to partner with Queens West Development Corporation to expand and renovate the Vernon Blvd Dog Run in Gantry Plaza State Park. Dog LIC, State Senator Gianaris, Assembly Member Nolan and Councilman Van Bramer have all been strong advocates for this project. We expect the community of dogs and dog owners to run and play off-leash for many years to come.”
Paul Januszewski, President of QWDC, said, “The renovated Vernon Boulevard dog run will provide not only a well-maintained recreational space for dogs, but also a community meeting place for their owners. Moreover, the space will serve as a link between Long Island City’s beautiful new waterfront and the thriving Vernon Boulevard retail corridor. QWDC is proud to be funding and constructing this important project.”
Stephanie Rodousakis, co-founder of DOG LIC, said, “With the ongoing support of Senator Mike Gianaris and Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, DOG LIC (Dog Owner Group Long Island City) and their 400 members are excited to have come to an agreement with the NY State Parks Dept. and QWDC to update, expand and renovate the Vernon Blvd Dog Run with water source and shade structure to be installed by mid-October. Through our growing partnership with NY State Parks Dept.' Rachel Gordon and her team, we thank them along with the QWDC for their commitment to providing the highest quality resources for all LIC residences and their dogs.”