The City of Burbank’s Parks and Recreation Department announced during a board meeting in May they have plans to name a proposed dog park after the late legendary radio and television personality, Dick Clark.
The concept of instituting an off-leash dog park in Burbank was initially brought up in 1997, but budget constraints and limited land availability inhibited the project from moving forward. Plans to follow through with constructing the park picked up in 2015, however, when AHBE Landscape began working with the city on preferred locations and optimal features. At this time it was decided that the southern end of Johnny Carson park, which lies adjacent to the freeway, would be the best area for the design.
The city was then approached by a representative of Dick Clark’s wife, Kari Clark, in July 2019, with an inquiry regarding possibly naming a Burbank facility after her late husband. Clark had personal ties to Burbank and the city was instantly elated with the idea.
“We were absolutely thrilled to hear from Mrs. Clark and flattered that she chose Burbank as the place to honor the iconic Dick Clark,” said Burbank Parks and Recreation Director Marisa Garcia. “Mrs. Clark told us that she felt a special connection to the City of Burbank since the Dick Clark Production offices were located here for many years.”
Due to Clark’s affinity for dogs, the park proposal was suggested as the namesake site. Kari Clark gladly welcomed the idea and has pledged a $150,000 donation toward construction plans.
“During our discussion on possible locations, the idea of naming a dog park was proposed as an option…and Mrs. Clark enthusiastically accepted the opportunity,” Garcia said. “It seemed like the ideal combination given that Dick Clark was also an avid dog lover.”
A few steps will be carried out by the city before construction can begin. Following Mrs. Clark’s contributions, estimated costs to finish the venture may range anywhere from $36,000 to $236,000. These funds will be addressed through means such as grants, campaigns, or possible supplementary sponsorships.
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power will also have to finish their River Supply Conduit Improvement project, part of which is taking place at Johnny Carson Park. Additionally, approval from the Burbank City Council must be granted before the proposal can move forward. After this, labor on the park will commence in two years.
Once completed, Burbank residents will be able to visit an area where they can spend fun times with pets and enjoy the outdoors.
“Having an off-leash dog park in Burbank will benefit the community tremendously,” Garcia said. “Residents will have a dedicated space to be physically active with their pets. The facility will also provide an opportunity for residents to enjoy the outdoors and socialize with fellow resident dog owners.”
The Parks and Recreation Department anticipates that the new park will be a prime example of the quality developments they continue to institute in the City of Burbank.
“Part of our department’s mission is to provide enriching opportunities through beautiful parks and inspiring programs, which would definitely be accomplished with this dog park,” Garcia said.
“Residents can expect a high-quality experience, both aesthetically and functionally,” Garcia added. “The Parks and Recreation Department takes tremendous pride in our parks and facilities and the Dick Clark Dog Park will not disappoint.”