Alki Point’s unofficial ‘dog park’ locked, again

The photo is from Karen, one of multiple readers who emailed this past week to wonder why that patch of public land on Alki Point was suddenly locked and inaccessible, as it’s been used, they say, as an unofficial “dog park.” It’s part of the grounds of the Alki stormwater treatment plant, a facility managed by the King County Wastewater Treatment Division. So we asked KCWTD spokesperson Marie Fiore about it. She says the site was never intended to be a “dog park,” or any other kind of park, but people continue to “cut the lock off” – so the lock was replaced. She says public access is prohibited “for safety and liability.”

33 Replies to "Alki Point's unofficial 'dog park' locked, again"

  • Adam March 15, 2022 (1:56 pm)

    Ok then. Back to the beach it is

    • Anne March 15, 2022 (2:21 pm)

      What a ridiculously immature comment. Did you read the reason it was never intended as a dog park??  So your first  thought is to break the “no dogs on beach ‘ law??  

    • Skeptic March 15, 2022 (3:02 pm)

      If only you were joking.  Those signs that say that dogs are not allowed anywhere on the beach….those are for other people’s dogs.  Not mine.

      • lamont March 15, 2022 (3:22 pm)

        How about you don’t own pets if you can’t take care of them without breaking laws.

        • Foop March 15, 2022 (4:15 pm)

          Can we apply this logic to cars too?

      • rocket March 15, 2022 (10:09 pm)

        “I dont normally walk my dog on the beach and off leash”.  Actual responses from people who I have confronted about having their dog on Alki.  People can justify anything and still sleep at night.

        • lol March 16, 2022 (2:19 am)

          I’ve reported these people to Animal Control before. So fed up of them. We should have this enforced and make them pay a fine.

        • poopoo March 16, 2022 (10:32 am)

          Every year more than 3 million dogs are abandoned and nearly half of them are quietly euthanized.  Want to make a real difference? Adopt a dog. 

          • anonyme March 16, 2022 (10:55 am)

            And please DO NOT ‘adopt’ from Craigslist and other backyard breeders.  These parasites are feeding the problem of pet overpopulation and irresponsible pet ownership.  As often as possible I go through CL and flag pet sales, which are prohibited on CL but flourish anyway.  An average day nets 3-400 ads for pet sales by backyard breeders and puppy mills.  Please help flag these people out of business!

    • move then? March 16, 2022 (2:18 am)

      How bout you move somewhere closer to where there is a dog park? You and your dog are not welcome at the beaches or playfields here where dogs aren’t allowed. You’re not above the law.

  • CarDriver March 15, 2022 (2:12 pm)

    “Cut the lock off” say’s a lot about dog owners.  Still wonder why they care about an off leash area when they’re so comfortable breaking the law. 

  • Guy March 15, 2022 (4:19 pm)

    I’ll bet the neighbors are thrilled though. The sounds of all that barking echoed off of the buildings in that area. The grass field behind Whale Tail park is now the Alki off leash dog park. 

  • Dog overpass March 15, 2022 (4:46 pm)

    We need a dog overpass that goes from sidewalk to water.  And a platform in the water so people can toss balls etc into the water for their dogs to swim without going in the beach.  

    • Poor dogs March 15, 2022 (5:55 pm)

      Hilarious. Yes silly that there are no public places for dogs on the beach. Only wealthy folks with water front are allowed to let their dogs swim abs have fun. 

  • Poordogs March 15, 2022 (5:52 pm)

    Sheesh so much hatred for dogs on this blog. People who have dogs also contribute to this community and should have the opportunity to share space. Sure, there’s some bad dogs out there but at least they aren’t stealing converters.  I say relax a bit  and let the dogs and their owners play. Maybe set up some dog hours at parks and use some of the licensing fees for waste cans and extra cleanup. Goodness knows with more density, fewer and fewer people have access to yards. Let em share the spaces we do have.

    • DH March 15, 2022 (7:31 pm)

      Few people here hate dogs. I have a dog and love dogs. What people here dislike are the people with dogs that think they are entitled to violate the law and use public spaces as they wish. You want public park time for your dogs? Work to get the laws changed. We live in a public place that requires civic cooperation to manage this density. It is rude and irresponsible to just ignore what you don’t like. It’s called the social contract. 

      • J March 16, 2022 (8:47 am)

        Ah yes, let me spend 5-7 years of my free time coordinating feasibility studies, studies, and fighting NIMBY,  when I may not even live in the same area of town in 2 years for a variety of reasons out of my control. It’d be a much better ROI to just risk the fee–and if people don’t like it, they can work to get better enforcement of the law.  I’m not going to try to make the excuse that everyone breaks some sort of law/contract to certain extents; however, if the barrier to legality is too large, and it doesn’t address the situation for the time being as well, I’m still going to sleep well knowing my dogs are getting the most out of their short lives and that no one was impacted except a few “whatif-ers”.

        • Erithan March 16, 2022 (7:27 pm)

          This is actually not a “nimby” issue, it’s environmental more then anything. Dogs have destroyed very fragile habitats being off leash in places like Lincoln park for example(restoration has been tedious). Attacked seals on the beach, and other wildlife. Dog feces on the beach also brings potential parasites for kids playing in the sand. If you look up a little above this post there’s a great article Ly posted about why it’s not good to let them off leash in some areas.

      • Poordogs March 17, 2022 (9:30 pm)

        Hmmm you assume that a) I have a dog, b) I have enough leisure time and money to fund a campaign, and c) that I break the rules. You don’t have to be a dog owner or a rule breaker to say chill out and let dog owners share space. Again west Seattle’s favorite pastime is to complain about dogs abs their owners. As if there isn’t a lot more interesting and more urgent things to be upset about. 

    • rocket March 15, 2022 (10:10 pm)

      Its not about the dogs at all.  Its about the owners who cant be tolerated to only get a hound if they are able and willing to care for it appropriately.

    • love dogs not entitled dog owners March 16, 2022 (2:05 am)

      I love dogs. I like their law abiding owners. I dislike entitled dog owners who think their above the law. There, is this easier to understand now? Beaches are off limits for dogs for a reason. Worse if you let your dog roam unleashed during seal pupping season. Have some respect.

    • No March 16, 2022 (2:14 am)

      Nope . Love dogs but I don’t want your dog waste and pee on a beach where our kids play in the sand. There are loads of dog parks in Seattle. Take your dog there. Shared spaces are for people and you bringing your dog there you are forcing your dog onto others, not to mention your dog damages the turf.  They aren’t welcome on Alki Beach or Alki Playfield. Nor are you entitled law breaking dog owners.

    • anonyme March 16, 2022 (7:32 am)

      I live in the city but I want a horse.  I live in an apartment.  The city should be required to provide paddocks on every block for those wanting to keep horses.  In addition, the city should install horse-only lanes on every arterial so that I can use my horse as transportation.  Extra patrols should be dispatched to pick up my horse’s crap on the streets.  It’s my right to have a horse anywhere I want, so even though I don’t have the proper living conditions to support one, the rest of the world should change to accommodate ME.  Anyone who doesn’t support ME must hate horses.   ME.ME.ME.  Poor ME.

  • CarDriver March 15, 2022 (5:57 pm)

    FOOP. Sure can. That will mean the roads will be EMPTY as there isn’t a car or delivery truck or bus that doesn’t violate a traffic law at some point.   

  • CarDriver March 15, 2022 (6:51 pm)

    Poor dogs, Poordogs. Doubt anybody hates dogs. What we hate are humans that feel owning a dog is a right. What we hate are humans, knowing there are limited off leash areas in a CITY feel they’re special and entitled and therefor have the “right” to ignore leash laws.  

  • Science27 March 15, 2022 (11:28 pm)

    Finally. As someone who lives on the street, last year we noticed a huge problem after someone cut the lock and started opening it up as a dog park. Many of the dog owners refused to keep their dogs from barking early morning and into the evening. Keeping our kids up. When we would ask them politely to keep it down, we only received over privileged white rants about how their dog is owed this park because they are so put upon. It turned into KarenFest but with worse haircuts. Not to mention that these people brought more crime and theft, threw trash all over, left piles of dog poop, had drunken screaming matches, and one even backed into my car and drove off while I tried to stop them. Good riddance. This will not become a dog park again. 

  • WS98 March 16, 2022 (9:40 am)

    We have/love dogs and I agree with sentiments about people who think they are entitled to violate the law and use public spaces as they wish. People in WS used to respect public space, now they mistakenly think they can do as they please because ‘my taxes pay for this’. Guess what…SO DO MINE.I’m tired of seeing public spaces ruined by dogs tearing up grass/trails and humans leaving dog feces behind in places intended for enjoyment by all. Madison Middle School and Schmitz Park trails are two great examples. I know people don’t intend for their dogs to intentionally wreck either place but it happens. Madison has had holes all over the place from dogs digging, the grass is gone from dogs scrambling after balls or each other. My kids can’t even play in this space anymore because of all the dog poop and holes. For the record, I feel the same way about the parents who allowed and helped their children to completely ruin the south end by digging up the landscape for mountain bike tracks/jumps during the Covid lock down. Schmitz Park creek is a bathing/watering hole whose urban riparian banks are pure mud now…volunteers have spent thousands of hours restoring this park which also has the last stands of old-growth forests in the city. Equally, I’m furious that a grown up scaled a tree and hung a rope for swinging. That resulted in huge destruction of green space around that entire area and damage to the entire slope leading down to it where no thought or planning went into the ‘trail’ leading to the swing. One solution is to walk/run your dog because it’s a great way to bond, train and bathe in endorphins when both of you exercise. We do this every day and I can tell you we are all happier. Another solution is to take action on a project in flight to establish another real dog park with viable space in West Seattle., just do the right thing and obey the law.

    • Matt March 16, 2022 (12:24 pm)

      Completely agree with you! I have a large dog, always pick up after it, etc. At first I would play fetch at the school field my kids attend. Until I realized all those claws completely destroy the field for the kids. If students playing sports rough up the field, fine by me, school fields/playgrounds are for the students, not dogs. Also agree they need more fenced areas for dogs. Lincoln Park is huge. Could easily pick a reasonably sized area and fence it off. My thinking is make it legal/safe/easier for dogs to play. And also increase penalties for not following the rules.Please ask friends to call Seattle Animal Control  (206-386-7387, option 2) to report off leash dogs on school grounds. They’re totally willing to drive by and talk to people. I don’t want dogs taken away, nothing like that, just to remind owners that kid’s playgrounds are not dog parks.Another (albeit petty/non-constructive) way to look at it: How about my baseball team takes batting practice and poops at the dog park? Oh they’d be furious and give me more grief than I do to people who’s animals actually poop where my daughter plays soccer and picks flowers.

  • WSsince90 March 16, 2022 (4:48 pm), maybe there is something here for everyone.Y’all are so angry. Consider revising.The idea behind a dog park is for the dogs to bond with other dogs, to socialize. Jogging with a dog is not a replacement.And blaming crime on people with their animals? That’s a new one. I got my car broken in to once there, these things happen. But it was broken in to when nobody was in the area. If I was there watching my car it never would have happened. It’s certainly not dog lovers who are driving crime in your neighborhood, friend.Every time I attended that location, the people were friendly and respectful. And I was there a lot. Also, I was not aware that the city had an issue with that, not was anyone else I spoke with. We just found it a really amazing hidden gem.This area was not ideal, muddy and gross, but the people there did NOT leave poop intentionally and often those of us picked up errant feces.Anyways, the link above states that merely selecting a site will take minimum 1 year. Assume another year for construction and permitting. That’s 2 years that some dogs won’t be able to socialize as readily as they were up until this area was closed. And there is no close alternative.It’s easy to talk about those few bad experiences, but for as long as this has been happening, your list of grievances is remarkably short. There is a lot of goodwill from us dog owners, now that we know of your issues, we could be part of the solution. I would be willing to help enforce a curfew. A simple drive by and explanation would go a long way.And chip in for some beautification of the area and help to maintain the space. I’m going to query the city, hopefully something can be worked out just until an official area is constructed.Thanks for reading.

    • WSsince90 March 16, 2022 (4:53 pm)

      Please excuse the lack of formatting, I could not edit it in time. 

      • Espy March 17, 2022 (1:25 am)

        I love dogs, being opposed to this space being used as a dog park is about noise, dog owner attitudes, and habitat destruction. I live on the street where this  property is located. One big issue is the noise, barking. I work hard and want to come home to a quiet place to rest.  I want to sleep past 7:30 am on weekends. We often care for our grandchildren and it is infuriating when people show up with their barking dogs early on the weekend and wake a baby who had us up half the night teething. They were clueless at their thoughtless behavior. Some of my neighbors work swing and graveyard shifts and need quiet in order to sleep. That property is literally across the street with no barriers to muffle the noise. Most dog parks are further away from people’s homes, I would imagine because of the noise.The second issue is entitled jerks who yell at us simply for asking that they stop their dog from barking. Many people will come with their dogs and ignore them while they are on their phones or chatting with other dog owners. I’m a senior and these encounters make me so angry. The last jerk was very aggressive, and threatening.  I worry that someone might yell at me while my sons are visiting and that will not go well. The third reason is the destruction of the habitat. All the ground covering has been destroyed. There used to be all types of birds, even the eagles don’t come around and I don’t know where the squirrels all went. I’m hoping all of that comes back. I will tell you it has been so peaceful and quiet since those signs went up..I hope you understand why this cannot be used as a dog park and you won’t  pursue actions to take those signs down. You might consider putting your energy into asking the city to designate  space at Lincoln Park for a dog park. Thank you. 

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