Quinta dos Patudos, a project to build a rural dog park between Paderne and São Bartolomeu de Messines, has won €2,000 in a contest organised by electricity supplier EDP.
Not only was it one of the 10 winning ideas, it was the project with the most online votes (1,012).
“It gives us confidence to know that people supported our idea,” said 53-year-old José Reis, the driving force behind the project alongside his wife Bárbara.
“The votes weren’t everything – there was a jury that voted too and we expected them to vote for more urban projects,” he said, due to the very name of the contest (Todos Queremos um Bairro Melhor – Everyone Wants a Better Neighbourhood).
As the Resident reported (see story ‘Rural dog park leads EDP contest’ at portugalresident.com), the idea behind the project is to give the Algarve “a place where dogs and their owners can exercise and socialise safely”.
According to Reis, the park will boast two fenced areas for dog-related activities, as well as two dog “bathrooms”, a picnic area, a water tank and a nature trail.
It is being built on a 4,200sqm area and will be open to all but will have to be booked in advance.
It could also serve as a venue for canine sporting events, as well as ‘cãominhadas’ (dog walks), workshops and activities aimed at children, seniors and the disabled.
There will be a “small fee” to pay to use the park, Reis told us, to help with operational costs.
As it is non-profit, the project is being brought to life by a crowd-funding initiative.
Although they expect to spend €20,000 on the park, the couple says it doesn’t need all of the money at once.
“As we hold activities at the park, we expect to generate enough money to keep it expanding,” Reis told us.
He hopes to have the idea up and running by this autumn.
To keep updated on the progress of the park, visit www.quintadospatudos.com or Facebook: Quinta dos Patudos
By MICHAEL BRUXO [email protected]