Just west of Interstate 575 on Dupree Road, Woofstock Park will be a multi-purpose park featuring two gated-in dog areas, with one designated for large-breed dogs and the other for small-breed dogs.
In between the puppy play areas, a 42-plot community garden will be open for residents to sow their own seeds.
Residents were updated on the park plans — the first of its kind in the city — Thursday night at a town hall meeting at the Deer Run Clubhouse.
Woodstock’s Parks and Recreation Director Preston Pooser said some have questioned the park’s purpose.
“A lot of people ask why I’m building a park for dogs,” he said. “I jokingly say, ‘The dogs aren’t going to drive themselves there.’ It’s a park for dog owners.”
Pooser said there are about 80 million registered dogs in the United States, which essentially means about 40 percent of Americans own dogs.
That representation also holds true to the city of Woodstock.
“We have about 11,000 dog owners in Woodstock,” Pooser said.
The park is located on the six-acre lot where Waldan Chase apartments used to be until the 60-unit complex was severely damaged in a 2009 flood.
Woodstock purchased the property for $450,000 in February 2011 and demolished the apartments a few months later using $2.38 million in Federal Emergency Management Agency funds.
Pooser said ground was broken on the site several weeks ago, but recent rainy weather has knocked back. construction. He said it will hopefully be completed in May and expects the community garden to be finished prior to the park opening.
He said the project is being funded by the city’s portion of the Cherokee County parks bond for approximately $200,000 and bids for fencing and the two pavilions — which will be in the center of each dog area — will go out within the next month.
Additionally, the park will have a trailhead linking it to the city’s trail system.
Pooser said that in the next few weeks, the city will begin construction on the Noonday Creek trails, which will go through Elm Street Cultural Arts Village in downtown Woodstock to the trailhead at Woofstock Park. Another branch of the trail will continue on to Highway 92.
Eventually, a third trail will go underneath Interstate 575 to South Towne Lake Hills Drive near Woodstock High School.
“Technically, you could ride a bike from South Towne Lake Hills and Deer Run to downtown down to 92 eventually to Rope Mill Park,” he said.
Michael Brantley, parks division director for Cherokee County Parks and Recreation, said the county is planning a dog park at Patriots Park off Kellogg Creek Road and Victory Drive in Acworth. Brantley said the project is still in design phases and is at least a year or two away.
The city of Canton has Canton Paw Park at the corner of Birch and Juniper streets, which opened in March 2011 as the county’s first off-leash dog park.
Pooser said both of the city’s community gardens are open to all, but first priority is given to Woodstock residents.
Those interested in plots at the Dobbs Road community garden, which is located next to Chattahoochee Technical College’s Woodstock campus, should call his office this week as registration is opening up and costs $25 per year.
“It will fill up quick,” Pooser said “I think last time we opened it up it filled up in a week.”
For the new plots at Woofstock Park, Pooser estimated it will cost approximately $50 for a plot. He said costs are higher because of the amenities at the location, including a restroom facility.
There are 42 plots, 20-by-20 feet, at the Dobbs Road location and there will be 36 new plots at the park, which Pooser said will probably be 16-by-16 feet.
At both locations, there are spigots near the plots to water plants and each gardener is provided a key to a shed with hoses and gardening tools.