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Why Henrico temporarily closed Short Pump Dog Park

SHORT PUMP, Va. — The year-old dog park located inside Short Pump Park in Henrico’s West End temporarily closed Monday.

During the temporary closure, the county will replace the dog park’s grassed/denuded dirt area with synthetic turf.

“With the amount of use the dog park was getting, we could not maintain the grass. It was becoming mostly dirt that turned to mud when it rained,” Henrico Recreation and Parks marketing specialist Pam Kempf said.

While unable to provide specific numbers, Kempf said dog park usage exceeded what was initially anticipated and prompted the $200,000 project — just 13 months after the park opened to the public.

“The construction project will include the installation of a new synthetic grass/surface system designed specifically for dog parks within the existing dog park fenced areas,” the Henrico Recreation and Parks Department posted online. “The work will include site-work, grading, concrete work, installation of a stone base to support the new synthetic surface and seat walll planters.”

The county will also plant shade trees and install benches to provide a resting spot for dog owners.

The county’s other dog park — located inside Dorey Park — will keep its natural grass.

Kempf said the county has had an easier time maintaining the grass in the dog park at Dorey Park because it was built in an area with natural shade and is not used as heavily as the Short Pump area dog park.

While a 2005 Bond Referendum helped pay for the initial Short Pump Park upgrades, the county will spend money from its capital fund for the most recent dog park changes.

While an exact reopening date has not been established, the county anticipated Short Pump Dog Park would reopen in late September.

Short Pump Park is located on Pump Road between West Broad Street and Three Chopt Road.