Home » News

A Celebration for Hunting Bayou Greenway

Media Contact:
Abby Linney, Elmore Public Relations
Abby [at] elmorepr [dot] com / 713-524-0661

NEWS RELEASE

Kashmere Gardens community marks ribbon cutting and groundbreaking on Bayou Greenway 2020 hike-and-bike trail

HOUSTON, TX – July 24, 2018 – On Tuesday morning, Houston Parks Board, Houston Parks and Recreation Department, Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), Harris County Precinct One and Harris County Flood Control District celebrated a ribbon cutting and groundbreaking ceremony for Hunting Bayou Greenway. The new greenway and hike-and-bike trail will ultimately connect Mickey Leland Memorial Park to Hutcheson Park, creating new greenspace and linear parkland for the surrounding community.

This milestone event signaled the near completion of a 1-mile stretch of trail along Hunting Bayou Greenway from Falls Street to Pickfair Street, federally funded by TxDOT. Along this new trail and on land acquired by the Houston Parks Board, is a new pocket park at the intersection of Pardee and Leffingwell, which serves as a gateway to the Kashmere Gardens neighborhood. A future phase of the Hunting Bayou Greenway will pick up at Pickfair Street and continue through Hutcheson Park to a future Kelly Street Bikeway. Civil engineer and landscape architecture firm Halff Associates designed the greenway, contractor Aranda Brothers Construction is building the project, and TxDOT managed the construction.

Construction has also begun on a half-mile stretch of trail from Mickey Leland Memorial Park to Falls Steet, which includes replacement of an asphalt trail with a new 10-foot wide concrete trail. The trail replacement will extend north along West Hunting Street and includes benches, signage, trash cans and recycling bins in addition to wildflowers and tree plantings. At the end of the trail, a new pedestrian bridge will connect to the recently completed Hunting Bayou Greenway segment. Halff Associates designed the greenway, contractor Jerdon Enterprise is building the project, and Huitt-Zollars is managing the construction.

“We are excited to celebrate not only the completion of the newest segment of Hunting Bayou Greenway, but to also break ground on the next portion of greenway,” said Beth White, President and CEO of Houston Parks Board. “We firmly believe in the power of greenspace and connecting communities across Houston, and we are proud to partner with TxDOT and the Houston Parks and Recreation Department to create new parks for everyone.”

Both greenway segments feature pocket parks on land acquired by the Houston Parks Board. Features of the new pocket parks include leaf designs in the concrete, carefully curated native plantings and trees, seating, signage, trash cans and recycling bins.

“Working through partnerships allows us to provide connections to parks and greenspaces across the city,” said Steve Wright, Director for the Houston Parks and Recreation Department. “Together we are working to provide access to parks and greenspaces for all communities.”

Harris County Precinct One Commissioner Rodney Ellis, State Representative Harold Dutton Jr., Congresswoman Shelia Jackson Lee, Harris County Flood Control District Director of Operations Matt Zeve, Houston Parks and Recreation Department Director Steve Wright, Texas Department of Transportation District Engineer Quincy Allen and Houston Parks Board President and CEO Beth White all spoke at the ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of a new segment of trail, as well as the start of the trail replacement and pedestrian bridge construction.

“Every community deserves access to beautiful and safe trails that can be used for recreation, health and everyday mobility. The Hunting Bayou Greenway is a vital link that will connect communities to one another and lead to new opportunities for our residents,” said Comissioner Rodney Ellis, Harris County Precinct One.

“The Flood Control District has been involved with the Hunting Bayou watershed for many years now, working to reduce flooding risks via the Hunting Bayou federal project and other projects,” said Matt Zeve, Director of Operations for the Harris County Flood Control District. “We are pleased that the drainage infrastructure that helps protect this community will be shared with Bayou Greenways to make it a more connected community as well.”

Hunting Bayou Greenway is part of Bayou Greenways 2020, a public-private partnership between the nonprofit Houston Parks Board, the City of Houston and the Houston Parks and Recreation Department. The initiative is implemented in close collaboration with the Harris County Flood Control District, which manages the county’s bayous and creeks for drainage and flood risk reduction. Bayou Greenways 2020 will transform 3,000 acres of underutilized land along nine major waterways and create a 150-mile network of connected parks and trails along Houston’s major waterways.

In 2012, thanks in part to the “Parks By You!” campaign, Houston voters overwhelmingly approved a bond proposal that set aside $100 million for Bayou Greenways 2020. Houston Parks Board is raising an additional $120 million and is managing acquisition, design and construction of the Bayou Greenways. More than $107 million has been raised to date, including a historic $50 million donation from the Kinder Foundation.

TxDOT administers the federally funded Transportation Enhancement Program (TE), which provides opportunities for non-traditional transportation related activities. Projects should go above and beyond standard transportation activities and be integrated into the surrounding environment in a sensitive and creative manner that contributes to the livelihood of the communities, promotes the quality of our environment, and enhances the aesthetics of our roadways. Projects undertaken with enhancement funds are eligible for reimbursement of up to 80 percent of allowable construction costs.

For photos of the event, please click here. Photo credit to F. Carter Smith.

###

A nonprofit 501(c)(3) dedicated to providing access to quality parks and greenspace for all people, Houston Parks Board creates, improves, protects and advocates for parks for everyone. Since 1976, the organization has utilized public-private partnerships and its extensive philanthropic, government and community relationships to improve parks large and small. Houston Parks Board is currently leading the transformational $220 million Bayou Greenways 2020 project to create a 150-mile network of connected parks and trails along Houston’s major waterways. For more information, visit www.houstonparksboard.org.

Bayou Greenways 2020 is one of the most ambitious parks projects in the U.S. By transforming more than 3,000 acres of underutilized land along Houston’s major waterways into linear parks, Bayou Greenways 2020 will create a 150-mile network of connected parks and trails. The $220 million project will connect people, places and greenspace while enhancing air and water quality, preserving flood-prone areas and stimulating economic development in Houston.

The Houston Parks and Recreation Department (H.P.A.R.D.) stewards and manages over 37,851 acres of parkland and greenspace for the City of Houston and develops and implements recreational programming for citizens of all abilities. For more information on the Houston Parks and Recreation Department, call (832) 395-7022 or visit www.houstonparks.org.

Download a PDF of this announcement.