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Construction of Dog Run at Thomas P. Noonan Playground to Begin This Summer

A dog run and seating area will be constructed in the southwest section of Thomas P. Noonan Playground (pictured) Photo: Queens Post

April 26, 2022 By Christian Murray

The Parks Dept. plans to break ground on a dog run and seating area at L/CPL Thomas P. Noonan Playground this summer.

The department plans to transform the southwest section of the park—near the intersection of Greenpoint Avenue and 42nd Street—into an area for canines and residents looking to sit back and relax.

A spokesperson for the Parks Dept said Monday that the agency anticipates that construction will take about 12 months, with the project likely to be completed by summer 2023.

The department released a preliminary design at the beginning of 2020 and the plan had been to start construction in spring 2021 and complete it in spring 2022.

However, the Parks Dept. faced delays in seeking a contractor to do the work due to the pandemic. The department—between March 2020 and March 2021—stopped putting out contracts to bid on hundreds of projects due to the city’s fiscal uncertainty and other constraints.

The project will involve the construction of a dog run that will include a 1,500 square foot area for large dogs and a 770 square foot area for smaller canines. Both spaces will boast benches, dog waste receptacles and bottle fillers with doggie bowls. The dog run will be parallel to Greenpoint Avenue.

The area adjacent to the proposed dog run will be resurfaced with concrete hexagon pavers and there will be benches, a game table, plantings and a pedestrian pole with 1964 World’s Fair-themed lighting installed. At the entrance–by Greenpoint Avenue and 42nd Street– there will be a concrete seat wall.

Parks Dept.

The new dog run stems from a grass roots campaign by a group of local dog owners who formed the Friends of Noonan Park Dog Run.

Christine Coulombe, the group’s leader, approached then-Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer with the idea of a dog run, noting that there was a lack of public dog facilities in the southern section of the neighborhood.

Van Bramer secured funding for the $2.5 million project from the mayor’s office in 2018.

Coulombe, in an interview Tuesday, said that she was pleased the project was back on track.

“I’m getting excited,” Coulombe said. “In fact many people are getting excited as the word is getting out.”

Coulombe said that there are a lot of dogs on the south side of Queens Boulevard and that while the dog run at Lou Lodati Park on Skillman Avenue is good it is too far away.

She said she likes the Parks Dept. design, although she is concerned about the fate of the existing trees. She is trying to make sure they don’t get chopped down, since they provide a much-needed canopy.

Coulombe and her husband, Todd Gwinn, plan to maintain the dog run along with their Friends of Noonan Dog Run group– much like Rick Duro and the Sunnyside United Dogs Society oversee the dog run at Lou Lodati Park.

The revamp of the southwest corner of Noonan Playground represents the final stage of the park’s three-phase overhaul.

In 2015, the playground was expanded and new climbing areas, swings, safety surfaces and shrubbery were installed. A sprinkler as well as a flagpole in recognition of Lance Corporal Thomas P. Noonan Jr., who was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor after the Vietnam War, were also added.

In 2016, the basketball courts and handball courts were resurfaced with new asphalt.

Upon the completion of Phase 3, the entire park–with the exception of the bathrooms– will have been redone in recent years.

Parks Dept.

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22 Comments

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Greg

Dog waste in plastic bags is not recycled. It goes into a landfill. How many pounds per day citywide?

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skillmanite

This will turn into another archeological dig. Everyone milking it and making it last as long as possible to justify the “silly” money thrown at it.

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43rd & 43rd

It’s too bad that a space that has been used by everyone, will now only be used by a small percentage of people. I like dogs — but I wish there was ANY space in Sunnyside where anybody could sit on some grass and read a book or have a picnic.

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Allow me to retort

The city spends a fortune putting homeless people up in hotels. (It’s a racket IMHO.)

How much more taxpayer money would you like them to spend?

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anon

Why should my tax dollars go for a dog park so you can go with your dog and hang out with other dog owners? I love dogs but they’re animals not human beings. It’s disgusting when dog owners refer to their dogs are family members. No, they’re pets. Get your priority straight people!

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Concerned Citizen

What are you doing for the homeless besides sitting on your computer spewing “we should do this” or “we should do that”…the city spends ample money on homeless. What about you? Have you taken them in your house? Do you regularly give donation. There is a famous tiktoker who gets his followers to donate money and then gives homeless people 500, 1000 dollars and changes their lives….or does it feel righteous to criticize this much needed dog park with “what about the homeless” nonsense. The city grossly mismanaged how they handle it with the millions they wasted. Everyday people are trying to survive and are not worried about the homeless.

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Archangel Mikey

If every day people are trying to survive then shouldn’t they have more sympathy because it can be their plight as well? Are your rich like Elon Musk? If you’re an atheist, I can understand but if you’re of the faith, you need to get religion fast and go to church and pray forgiveness.

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Concerned Citizen

A much needed quality of life change. We also need lights so that the park is not dark at night.

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Carmen

Much better use of that space- for as long as I can remember this part of the park has been full of ppl drinking and sleeping on those benches.

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DD

And where do the older local men who sit on the benches now go ? (you can see some in the picture). Why is there no space left for them? And it does look those trees they sit under will be gone too. The dog owners need to ask for changes – it’s good for them to get their dog run but not push others who have been using that space out.

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AKM

As a Sunnyside southsider, I am very excited to have this new dog run! My southside dog, who is often too tired to play by the time we get to Lodati, will also be thrilled! Great job getting this built!

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43rd & 43rd

If your dog can’t walk THREE BLOCKS before becoming exhausted, it must be small enough to be easily carried…

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South

Excellent – glad the seating will be closer to the street so that folks can’t gather in dark corners, and I’m glad the dog run will keep the space active with community members at all hours. The current use of the southwest side of the park is uncomfortable and unwelcoming.

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Tom

Another dog run?!!!!! How many of these damn things do I have to pay for?!!!! I want my taxes to go for people not dogs. This pisses me off!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I hate dogs. Hate them.

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That should be free parking

My $27 emissions fee entitles me to park my car wherever I want why do liberals want dog parks

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Mima

It’s obvious that whoever proposed and designed this don’t live across the street from one, it will be horrible, all the constant barking, smell….I’ve seen Plenty of dog owners ignoring the rules, it will be nice in the beginning but after a while who is going to volunteer to help clean the place? I don’t want to sound bitter, I love dogs, it’s the dog owners I’m concerned about…. Not a good move… so much money invested….

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Simon T

Frankly, this is a bewildering use of public space in a neighborhood where the primary complaint is a lack of public space. As is, the space is used all kinds of people: older men playing cards, overflow from the basketball courts, parents throwing birthday parties for young kids there. Now it’s for the exclusive use of dog owners? Meanwhile, theres already a dog park in the neighborhood! Alas, as it’s a whole 7-minute walk from Noonan, it’s “too far away”.

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David Smith

This is far enough from the dog park in northern Sunnyside to be justified. I will ride my bike over there but it’s too far to walk. I like dogs but am not a big fan of their owners. I hope this increases the number of people in this park to the point where it becomes less sordid and more wholesome. Right now it’s populated by too many people who are either drinking or passed out on a bench.

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7 Train delays

Just turn the whole park into a dog run. More people have dogs than kids these days anyway. Now what do politicians do for the cat lady vote?

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