Aquatic Park (Berkeley)

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Pedestrian Bridge at the north end of the park

Aquatic Park is a public park in Berkeley, California, United States, located just east of the Eastshore Freeway (Interstate 80) between Ashby and University Avenues. The Works Progress Administration created the park in the 1930s simultaneously with the nearby Berkeley Yacht Harbor.[1] Its centerpiece is an artificial mile-long lagoon that was cut off from San Francisco Bay by the creation of a causeway for the Eastshore Highway, during the construction of the approaches to the San Francisco – Oakland Bay Bridge, also in the 1930s. The lagoon still communicates with the Bay through culverts under the freeway (one in line with Ashby Avenue, the other in line with Grayson Street). The east shoreline of the lagoon used to be the original shoreline of San Francisco Bay.

A struggle to enforce dog leash laws in Aquatic Park is spearheaded by the Audubon Society,[2] Berkeley Animal Care Services, various environmental groups, BAD RAP (Bay Area Dog-lovers Responsible About Pit Bulls), local animal welfare activists and responsible dog owners. In all public areas not designated as on-leash, Berkeley city ordinance allows any voice-responsive dog to remain off-leash (though not more than six feet from its human companion), including in city streets.[3] Ironically, Aquatic Park is one of the few public areas in Berkeley where a leash is actually required. Despite the close proximity to Aquatic Park of several off-leash parks (Cesar Chavez Park, at walking distance under one mile, and Ohlone Park), numerous dog owners, including many using the public disc golf course, allow their dogs off-leash, which often leads to the mauling and subsequent instances of euthanization of shelter dogs from the Berkeley Animal Care Shelter (at the park's southern tip) that are being walked by volunteers, as well as other animals being walked by responsible pet owners.[4]

Park features[edit]

Aquatic Park features picnic areas, "Dream Land for Kids"—a large children's playground, a pedestrian-bicycle path, and a disc golf course. The lagoon is used by the Berkeley Paddling and Rowing Club year round, and by the Berkeley Water Ski Club during the summer months (their ski ramp is visible in the middle of the lagoon). Historically, it was also a practice site for the University of California crew teams (see California Golden Bears).

External links[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Annual Reports of the City of Berkeley Recreation Department, 1933-1940
  2. ^ "The Agony of Aquatic Park (News Analysis). Category: Page One from". The Berkeley Daily Planet. Retrieved 2013-12-04. 
  3. ^ "City Dog Regulations - City of Berkeley, CA". Ci.berkeley.ca.us. Retrieved 2013-12-04. 
  4. ^ Mausner, Jasmine (2011-09-14). "Concerns raised over dog attacks in Berkeley park - The Daily Californian". Dailycal.org. Retrieved 2013-12-04. 

Coordinates: 37°51′25″N 122°17′56″W / 37.856871°N 122.298859°W / 37.856871; -122.298859