Hubbard Park & North Branch River Park Management Plan and Ecological Assessment
The Parks Commission would like to thank the public for the robust public participation in the update to the Hubbard Park & North Branch River Park Management Plan and Ecological Assessment. The final plan was adopted by the Commission on February 23rd, 2023. Here's what you'll find in the plan:
- A comprehensive history of both parks.
- An ecological assessment of existing conditions in 2023.
- A list of recommended actions for maintaining and improving the parks over the next 10 years. The specific actions and timelines are meant to serve as a guideline that can flex or change, as necessary, to reflect circumstances and community interests. These actions are recommended, rather than required, as an acknowledgment of the many logistical, environmental, and community factors that will contribute to their realization.
- Consideration of the potential impacts of these actions, as well as a list of actions considered but not included in the plan.
This plan is a living document, and it's never too late to weigh in. We invite you to read the plan and provide the Parks Commission with your input. Any additional comments you have can be emailed directly to the Parks Commissioners or Parks Director Alec Ellsworth at firstname.lastname@example.org.
FAQs Regarding the Management Plan:
What changes are being proposed regarding dogs in Hubbard Park and the North Branch Park?
- In Hubbard Park: Modify dog policies and amenities to make people feel safer and more welcome by:
- Requiring dogs to be leashed at certain times or in specific areas, pending recommendations from a Dogs in Hubbard Park Study Group that will investigate the best options for compromise that makes the park more welcoming to all.
- Adding a dog waste station at the new Windham Drive entrance.
- Requiring dogs to be leashed on roads open to motor vehicle traffic, in keeping with city ordinance.
- Requiring dogs to be leashed at parking areas (marked on maps with a “P”) and at shelters.
- Building a fence between the “dog park” field and the adjacent parking area to minimize potential contact between dogs and moving cars.
- NBRP: Add a dog waste station at the Pump Track entrance to the River Trail.
Please see the map on the right to understand which specific trails are being proposed for on-leash areas. These trails will be considered as a starting point for the Dogs in Hubbard Park Study Group.
What are the current rules in Hubbard Park regarding dogs?
- Dogs are welcome in Hubbard Park and may be off leash
- Make sure your dog is either on a leash or under voice control at all times, as required by City Ordinance
- Always keep your dog in sight
- Don't allow your dog to approach people or other dogs without mutual agreement
- Don't assume others want to interact with your dog
- Carry a leash for each dog you walk, and be prepared to leash your dog as needed
- Dog owners must pick up after their dogs. Use receptacles provided or carry out
- Dogs must have current rabies vaccine
Also, while not explicitly stated in the Canine Code of Conduct, dogs are to be on-leash on roads per City ordinance, including the roads in Hubbard Park.
What Has Been the Process Around Updating the Management Plan For Hubbard & The North Branch Park?
- 10 Field Walks in the Spring/Summer of 2022
- "Open House" meeting on June 14th, 2022 to wrap up the field walks series.
- Online Survey throughout the Summer/Fall.
- Ecological Inventory conducted by a UVM Field Naturalist Student
- 5 Parks Commission public meetings on 10/11/22, 10/25/22, 11/15/22, 12/13/22, 1/17/23, 2/7, 2/21, and 2/24 for deliberation and public comment on the plan.
- Also drawing data from the 2021 Outdoor Recreation Survey (1346 responses)