There is a special section of Baltimore County, hidden from immediate view, where dogs and people alike used to frolick amongst the grass and swim in the lake. That place is Robert E. Lee Park, right on Lake Roland, in Baltimore County, off Falls Road.

The park had been closed off, as the pedestrian bridge was closed, making the trails unusable. The pedestrian bridge will be replaced, and a legal dog park put in place.

In its heyday, the park had been a large attraction especially for dogowners in the Towson area. Dogs romped and swam, despite notices stating they needed to be leashed.

Baltimore City legally owns the land, despite its’ location in Towson in Baltimore County. This may account for the lack of upkeep due to disagreements.

But now, the County is getting ready to sign a new lease and put $6 million in the budget to make this a person and animal friendly place to enjoy.

The improvements are the beginning phase of a long term plan, which, as Bob Barrett, Director of of Recreation and Parks for Baltimore County, is quoted in Lori Ingraham’s July 15, 2009  article in the Towson Times, saying, “…in future years, might include dredging the reservoir as well as adding paddle boat activities, fishing tournaments, and concerts.”

Towson homeowners, especially those part of the Ruxton-Riderwood Lake Roland-Area Improvement Association, should be excited. Quoting Loni Ingraham from the Towson Times:

The Ruxton Riderwood Lake Roland-Area association has urged attention to address environmental erosion, criminal activity, disrepair of existing park structures and capital projects to restore them. The association has also noted the off-leash dog situation and its impact on health, deterioration of trails and the need for new ones, and the issue of individuals who have actually taken up residence in the park.

These improvements should help Towson house values nearby tremendously, thanks to our County officials, and the hard work of the Association. This is wonderful news, and I am thrilled to be able to enjoy the upgrades!