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Dog park price tag: $250,261

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POSTED December 21, 2008 11:22 p.m.
Mayor Willie Weatherford thinks it is taking a dog gone long time to move the proposed dog park along.
The mayor during last week’s council meeting suggested Parks and Recreation Director Steve Houx take the plans for the dog park back before the Parks and Recreation Commission to see if it can jump start the project.
The idea for a dog park in Manteca was first floated at a City Council meeting in 2001 by Park West neighborhood resident Karen Grupe. A year later, dog park enthusiasts formed the Manteca Dog Owners Group (DOGs) to start working with the city to find a location for a dog park as well as to build it. By 2003, the first proposed location was identified — a grassy area immediately north of the Parks and Recreation office at the Civic Center.
Dog lovers have started pushing for progress on a dog park in Manteca. They have suggested various possible locations although the city has since officially adopted a location at Woodward Park.
 The location is on the northeast corner of the 52-acre park where Woodward Avenue and Bridewell Avenue. It is on the outer edge of the storm retention basin where an amphitheatre is proposed. There are already a number of stately sycamore trees in place.
The site requires fencing, a tap for drinking water for dogs —and humans — as well as benches and dog scoop stations. The commission in their master plan adopted in the summer of 2007 tossed in a large shade structure to bring the total cost for a dog park to $250,261.
It will cost $11.6 million to finish Woodward Park — or almost four times what the city spent on the initial improvements — based on estimates made in mid-2007.
The initial  improvement in the second phase  — perimeter walkways extending about a mile — have already been completed. The city is now working on a $440,000 water spray park immediately west of the big playground now in place and northwest of the basketball courts.
Other improvements that the commission wanted done in the second phase included:
• $135,000 for walkway lighting.
• $370,000 for a group picnic shelter.
The plan calls for the largest undeveloped area — the 10-acre storm retention basin — to have a regulation baseball field complete with scoreboard and a small soccer field in the outfield in the northeast corner of the basin. The southern part of the basin would hold two open turf field suitable for soccer with baseball backstops.
The northwest portion of the basin adjacent to the parking lot is envisioned to have a 1,000-seat amphitheater with raised stage and canopy plus adjoining restroom and concession building.
The amphitheater is next on the commission’s list of the four priorities that were initially proposed for funding in the 2007-08 fiscal year. The priorities were based on extensive input from a community survey.
There are six tennis courts complete with pro shop planned along Woodward Avenue immediately west of the main entrance.
The cost of the master plan in addition to the dog park is as follows:
• $1.2 million for six tennis courts.
• $672,000 for a tennis pro shop building.
• $610,000 for a concession building.
• $248,000 for a restroom.
• $925,000 for additional parking.
• $1.1 million for a maintenance facility.
• $89,000 for six individual picnic areas.
• $182,800 for a shade structure for a large picnic area.
• $42,500 for a shade structure for the small picnic area.
• $106,00 for three horseshoe courts.
• $40,000 for three flag poles.
• $324,00 for four bocce ball courts with shade structures.
• $442,000 for a water spray park.
• $1.7 million for the 1,000-seat amphitheater.
• $1.2 million for a baseball field with  90-foot base paths.
• $$8,500 for four baseball backstops.
• $780,000 for a restroom/concession building by the amphitheater and baseball field.
• $53,000 for three exercise stations for the jogging path.
• $10,700 for three bike racks.
• $67,000 for a young tots play structure immediately north of the proposed amphitheater.
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