Saturday, March 14, 2009

Lynnmour's Methane Treatment

Ever wondered what that fenced off stack like structure was. You know, the one situated just up the embankment, close to the end of the gauntlet. If I told you it was the Methane Elimination Facility would you know why?

A little history.
From the mid-1960's to 1987 there was an active garbage dump in Lynnmour. Premier Street was the access and the reason why there is a slightly raised entry and slightly lower exit to the park from this point. This was where the weight scale was originally located.

Before the garbage dump this area was a flood plain of Lynn Creek. The topography was the Aurborlynn neighbourhood slope on the west side of Lynn Creek and the Upper bluff where the cemetery sits to the east. Everything in between was fairly flat. Of coarse, the perfect spot for a dump.

These images were taken in 1963 seemingly before the dump evolved. But from this time forward it moved fast and furious to becoming the blight of the North Shore. In a 1970 Development Study, the Inter-River Area was described as follows: "The area contains the City and District Cemetery, gravel pits, the North Shore sanitary fill and garbage disposal and some residential development.... The garbage disposal operation has caused pollution of the Lynn Creek. The area is scarred by the B.C. Hydro 1200 K.V. power line which occupies a cleared right of way 300 feet wide" (1). In this same study it talked about the how the smell was becoming less as the dump continued to stretch north. It was from this movement that the park began to evolve.

By the mid-1980's it had become the topography we see now. Steep slopes up from Lynn Creek almost to the level of the cemetery. In 1984 a new study, the Central Inter-River Background Study, stated "the future of the landfill is currently under study.... Under completion of the landfill, the site will need to undergo a period of decomposition of materials and site regeneration. This necessitates limited use of the site as open space" (2).

In this same study, "Premier Park recreational areas south of the landfill be upgraded in accordance with an overall site plan" and this becomes Inter River Park.

In December 1987, North Vancouver District Newsletter, reads the following:
Landfill Closure Ahead of Schedule
Good news for District
The Premier Street Landfill will be closed for good next year
as promised. In fact it will be discontinued in March or April, several
months sooner than expected.(3)

So when you walk the gauntlet, looking up the slopes and noticing the odd
plastic bags sticking out of the earth, think of the tons of material that made
up those tiered fields and why we have a Methane Treatment area tucked away in a
little fenced area to the north.

Just for further interest...
There was a garbage dump in North Vancouver prior to this one. These images are from the District archives and they show a landfile at 17th St. and Rufus.

The image notes say that this "site was later filled from material from the cut [highway] to build Rufus Park."

  1. 2.2.2 Inter River Area. A Development Study of the Land Between Lynn Creek & Indian Arm in the District of North Vancouver British Columbia. Aug. 1970
  2. Public Services. Central Inter-River Background Study. April 1984.
  3. Landfill Closure Ahead of Schedule. North Vancouver District Newsletter. December 1987.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Trying To Find Dog Park Info on !?!?

I'm adding this link to my Interesting Links though, to tell the truth, it's far from interesting.

'Dogs In Parks', the North Vancouver District's web page is suppose to give all the information about walking your dog in the district. You might think it would contain helpful information like maybe explain what "off-leash" means. What Dog Etiquette might be. A good map of dog 'off-leash' areas.... In my opinion it falls short.

I admit, at first glance it looks simplified and inviting. The sub-title gives the reader clear information to what they are going to find here: "On this page you will find Bylaw Information, Dog Etiquette, and a map of the parks in the District of North Vancouver." Unfortunately, after the title, things start to loose that simplicity.

If you have hit the link for the map you get this large, extremely detailed, map of all the parks in the city and district of North Vancouver. The map itself doesn't have a visual symbol or detail that gives dog owners a easy information piece to use when they want to walk their dog.

What is interesting about this map is that the chart on the right shows 7 out of 141 parks (in the district) have off-leash areas (5 percent). So even though we push for park space in our own individual communities, dogs are not really welcome. Instead we choose to heard them into smaller areas (which are still multi-use) so, seemingly, they can police themselves. (Sorry, small rant.)

As for educating dog owners to the rules and regulation The dog by-law link actually takes you to the legal 'Dog Tax and Regulation Bylaw #5981.' Not an easy to understand version that the average person can comprehend but instead every schedule, paragraph and sub-section set forth and effective July 11, 1988. It contains consolidations, amendments, definitions. licencing, commercial dog walking permits, applying for commercial dog walking permits, fees,.... Do you get my point? Not something the average dog owner wants to peruse before venturing out with Tigger.

Only, at the bottom is there a glitter of hope for some information that might be of use. Under "Additional Information" there is a link that takes you to yet another page, which then gives 'Dog Etiquette.' Unfortunately, a let down again. Most of the points are about the destruction of district property; know were your dog isn't allowed, tread lightly, respect the park, be licenced and vaccinated.... That's about it!

So as not to thing that I'm just cutting the dnv's approach to dogs, please see the Vancouver Parks web site at And see 'Rex in the City.' It the district wants less problems with dogs maybe 'education' is a good place to start.

Caught, But Not Willing To Change

So the snow has returned but Spring is just around the corner. The breaking clouds and blue sky were the background for a beautiful walk today. But that's not really what I want to write about.

This weekend was a beautiful weekend and a busy time in Inter-River. There was a running race going on, mini-soccer in the lower field, young riders in the bike park. Which also lead to dogs on the field, dogs in the bike park,... you get the idea. Now don't get me wrong they all seemed well behaved. Anyway, Jack and I decided to take our weekend route along the service road, just above the gauntlet and then make our way behind the upper field. That's when we ran into the by-law officers. It was from a distance, but waving a leash at me was a pretty clear communication that I was out of the off-leash area. I complied as Jack generally walks next to me anyway through this area. But as we made our way back down to the back path between the service road entrance and the bike park I decided to throw the ball a few more time in the grassy area. As we came about to the parking lot at the lacrosse box I put Jack back on his leash.

I spotted the by-law vehicle again and noticed from the top of the hill down to the lower field that all the dogs at the bike park were now leashed and with there parent owners, out of the bike area. As I walked down the hill the by-law vehicle circled and approached me. Seemingly they saw that last ball throw....

But I didn't get a ticket. (Have you ever heard Arlo Guthrie explain the significant of the pickle in his Motorcycle song... for some reason that comes to mind). The rather large by-law officer gave me a speech about how I seemed to have a well behaved dog and he also noticed that I I was generally law abiding as Jack was wearing his licence, but he let me know that they had received complaints of problem dogs in the park. He also said, reminding me, that the only off-leash area was the lower side along the river. And by not leashing my dog I was reflecting that it was okay to be unleashed in this area.

He was absolutely right. And, I was wrong.

Hmmm......... but... If everyone had well behaved, somewhat trained (comes when called, heals) dogs then would there be any problems? Because I have to admit the reason I take this route is because of the number of people that have out of control dogs but are in the off-leash area. As a matter of fact Jack has only been attack, had his ball stolen, been mounted, etc, in the off-leash area. And the people I meet as I walk outside the off-leash areas share similar stories. One woman walking with her elderly mother and their dogs tells a story of there older lab being attacked so badly that they had to carry the dog out. And the person who's dog attacked them gave a fake phone number so she was in for the entire cost of the vet bills. I've watched dogs terrorize small children by the river while their owners are no where to be seen, somewhere on the upper path... oblivious to the screams of these children. I've been bitten because I stand, and now Jack moves, between Jack and dogs that look to be a problem. The owners reply, "Well, he's on leash!" A 20 ft leash. (And why is it that I seem to be the only one who recognizes "Crouching Tiger - I'm about to attack" stance).

So to the by-law officer, you are absolutely right. But until you start educating people on what 'off-leash but under control' means, maybe a few Saturday's handing out pamphlets and doggy treats and answering questions, I'm going to continue taking the safest route for both me and Jack.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Lynnmour Park

We cut through Lynnmour Park frequently and are confused by the signage posted around this park. If you enter from the South West corner by the school you are greeted with a sign that reads "Dogs allowed on pathway only." And the image is of a dog without a leash.

Now, this park is frequently used by family's with both small children and dogs because seemingly all are welcome. I have seem multiple family's with multiply dogs sitting on the benches as there children play, as it use to be before dogs were denounced to their own park areas and back when a community park was for all in the community. But really this is a whole other issue.... back to the signs!

On the other hand, if you enter this park from the North side by the district's plant/maintenance yard you are greeted with a sign stating "DOGS PROHIBITED."

The funny thing is that on each sign they reference the same bylaw #5981.

So how is it possible that this bylaw can both allowed and not allowed dogs in this park?