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Unofficial dog park in Playa del Rey locks its door, throws away the key

May 29, 2009 |  1:41 pm

Gas Company Dog Park in Playa del Rey An unofficial off-leash dog park in Playa del Rey has now become off-limits.  The property, near Manchester Avenue, is owned by the gas company and has been wink-winkingly called the "Gas Company Dog Park" but never officially held that purpose.  From the Argonaut:

While neighbors have used the site to give their dogs exercise over the years, some note that the property has seen increasing numbers of dog walkers in recent years since the Gas Company erected a fence around the land, enabling owners to let their dogs roam free. The enclosure has created the sense of a dog park, users say, and with the grassy area being one of few such places in the community, it has invited dog lovers from surrounding areas such as Playa Vista and Culver City.

"There was never a problem until they put up the fence in the first place," said resident Sean Mahaffey, who says he used to come play on the land and climb trees as a youth and now visits to take his dog out for exercise. "The problem is that it’s gotten overly blown up (with users)."

Representatives of Southern California Gas Company say they’ve liked allowing the community to enjoy the open area over the years, but with the influx of people using the site as an off-leash dog park, they are unable to keep the property accessible.

As of last week, the Gas Company Dog Park is closed for business -- and dog owners who frequented it are lamenting its loss.  Reviewer Kellie F. writes on the park's Yelp listing, "I hope the people who live near there enjoy staring at a gated piece of unused land, bringing no joy to anyone, from now on."

For a list of still-in-existence off-leash dog parks and dog-friendly beaches in the L.A. area, check out our colleague Elina Shatkin's picks on The Guide.

-- Lindsay Barnett

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