Town council has unanimously supported a motion by Mayor Jeff Genung to rename the off-leash dog park by the Bow River in memory of Jim Uffelmann.

Mayor Genung proposes to name the riverside off-leash area the "Jim Uffelmann Memorial Park" to honour Uffelmann for his long-standing advocacy of the area and for his ongoing lobby to have the town develop more off-leash areas throughout the community, including the new one now being developed alongside Hwy. 22.

Genung spoke to Uffelmann's parents during a celebration of his life and they agreed with the naming and also requested a bench be placed there bearing his name.

Town administration will now bring back a report to council on Dec. 11 on the proposal that will also include comments from the Cochrane Historical and Archival Preservation Society.

Shocked and saddened by Uffelmann's death, Mayor Genung made a commitment during his election campaign to lobby for the renaming of the park whether or not he was elected. 

Uffelmann suffered a fatal injury while volunteering his time to fall trees for the public trail system in the Bragg Creek area. He passed away on Sept. 29.

An avid outdoorsman, dog owner and cyclist, Jim moved to Cochrane from Banff in 2005 and has been pro-active in the community for many causes, particularly advocating the need for more and better dog parks and off-leash parks.

He unsuccessfully ran for town council in 2013 and his platform centred upon the off-leash dog park, the Open Spaces Master Plan and transit. He was also pushing for the town to make a stronger commitment to public openness and changing it gears from being agenda-driven to engagement driven.

While he dismissed the idea of running in the fall election, at the time of his death Uffelmann was active in the civic election, pushing for principles he held dear.