The dog days of summer will be far more hospitable in Jackson Heights for the neighborhood’s four-legged friends and their humans this year.
Councilman Shekar Krishnan and NYC Parks Queens Borough Commissioner Michael Dockett unveiled a brand-new dog run at Travers Park Thursday morning, June 30, in response to a surge in dog ownership over the past several years.
“Every member of our community deserves access to a restorative public space, and that includes our dog owners,” Krishnan said. “For so many of them, their dogs are more than just pets but are family members and companions. And for too long, they have been without a place of their own. That changes today, as we launch this new dog run at Travers Park in the heart of Jackson Heights.”
Under the guidance of NYC Parks, local volunteers will operate and maintain the dog run, which is the first in the neighborhood to be open to all members of the public at no cost and includes a storage locker, a “mutt mitt” bag dispenser and water supply.
“We want everyone to be able to enjoy our wonderful green spaces — those on two legs and four legs alike,” Dockett said. “We thank Parks Chair Krishnan for his advocacy for this run, and we’re proud to launch this pilot here in Travers Park to explore expanding recreational access for the Jackson Heights dog-owning community.”
The dog run will operate as a pilot program for one year, and if successful, will be made permanent. The dozens of community members that attended the opening Thursday morning, many of them with their pups, were enthusiastic about the new amenity.
“The dog owners of Jackson Heights are thrilled that the Travers Dog Run will open and we are grateful to Council member Krishnan and NYC Parks [Queens Borough] Commissioner Dockett for listening to our collective voices and creating a safe and fun space for our beloved family pets to run and play,” said Layna Patel, communications lead for Canine Social Club of Jackson Heights.
In 2020, Travers Park was rebuilt to include a great lawn, surrounded by flowering trees, benches and a performance area with stadium seating. An expanded play area features equipment for all age groups with a multipurpose area for open play. It is alongside the popular 34th Avenue Open Street that stretches from 69th Street to Junction Boulevard in Corona.