Skip to Content
Top Stories

Bend Park and Rec Board reviews river restoration, off-leash dog area projects

Petrosa Neighborhood Park plans also discussed

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- The Bend Park & Recreation board met Tuesday night for an agenda that included discussing and prioritizing a long list of proposed river habitat restoration and access point upgrades.

The board looked at 16 Bend parks on the Deschutes River to best determine possible improvements.

The park district used a focus group consisting of 14 organizations across Central Oregon to help guide development plans.

The district and the focus group have identified a project draft list classified as high, medium, and low priorities.

Bend Park & Rec planner Sarah Bodo presented updates to the board.

"After this year of coronavirus, we know that there are limitations on the general fund," Bodo said. "We always assumed most or all of these projects will require additional funding through grants or partnerships." 

Of the 34 potential projects, the focus group mutually agreed on a total of 28.

Board members also discussed off-leash dog areas along the Deschutes.

An organization called Dog-Pac partnered with the board to survey and gain feedback on possible locations.

Eighteen locations were identified and reviewed for 11 factors that include:

  • River current and dog safety
  • Existing bank material
  • River width
  • Bank slope
  • Current streamside habitat condition
  • Endangered species act habitat condition
  • Parking availability/ease of access
  • Potential conflict with other visitors
  • Existing level of dog use
  • Proximity of neighboring properties
  • Project complexity

Some of the locations could be permanent, while others could be seasonal during the summer months.

Bodo said they have narrowed their focus.

"So of those 18 sites, we were able to identify three potential locations," Bodo said, as a slide showed a permanent site at Riverbend Park and two seasonal ones, on the beaches of Riverbend and Farewell Bend parks.

"These three locations are in close proximity to each other, so if we do move forward, I would anticipate we only recommend one of them." 

Public comments from those opposed to off-leash dog areas near the river said the health of the river is more important, while others said dogs can block trails and degrade river habitats.

The park board also reviewed the Petrosa Neighborhood Park plans in northeast Bend.

The master plan could include up to nine phases of construction. Plans for a trailhead, canal trail, community center and a potential school site could be in the works.

The plan is set to be presented to the City Council on Feb. 5, followed by a neighborhood meeting on March 11.

Bend / Central Oregon / Government-politics / News
Author Profile Photo

Alec Nolan

Alec Nolan is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Alec here.



  1. I notice, in their long list of priorities, they do not mention enforcement of new or existing rules. Much of it is just talk without enforcement. I say that after walking by many parks with No Dogs signs and dogs running around unleashed and a scary encounter with a pitbull a couple of days ago on a park path.

  2. Please enforce poop pick up. Triple the fine for leaving your black plastic poo bag(filled with your dogs poo) on the side of the trail, like you plan to pick it up on the way back. I ain’t no Karen, but come on dog owners its getting pretty bad at Rim Rock.

Leave a Reply

Skip to content