We love grass, our dogs love grass, but bacteria love grass, too. The Chicago Parks District will not allow grass as a surface in a dog-friendly area because with the heavy traffic by dogs, it turns into a muddy, bacteria-laden swamp. Nobody wants to run around in that!
Here’s some info from the Chicago Parks District’s site:
Why is the Chicago Park District installing artificial turf fields?
Chicago Park District athletic fields are heavily utilized and artificial turf is a good sustainable solution. Artificial turf fields are a good replacement for natural grass fields because they extend the playing season and lower maintenance costs. Because the fields are in high demand and heavily utilized, shutting a field for a year to restore a natural turf field would displace users. Industry recommended average is 50 games (about 4 games per week) a season. The Chicago Park District may see up to 50 games a week on these athletic fields. Strategic placement of artificial turf fields allows for additional resources to maintain and reseed or sod the existing fields.
The benefits of artificial turf fields include continuous use of the fields in all weather and seasons and decreased maintenance costs. Artificial turf fields provide the ability to use recycled materials such as stone underneath the field and crumb rubber infill that would otherwise be disposed of in a land fill.
For a full list of FAQs on Chicago parks and artificial turf, click on through: