PROJECT DESCRIPTION AND HISTORY
In 2014, the City of Houston and CenterPoint Energy signed a Master License Agreement that would allow the city to build hike-and-bike trails on CenterPoint utility corridors. This agreement opened up the potential for a greatly expanded trail system across the city.
As part of the Spring Branch Management District’s 2015-2030 Comprehensive Plan, the District identified a vision to connect the Addicks Reservoir to White Oak Bayou Greenway with an 11-mile hike-and-bike trail through the heart of Spring Branch.
Currently existing within this overall proposed trail network is the popular Emnora Lane Hike-and-Bike Trail, built and maintained by Harris County Precinct Four, along a CenterPoint Energy easement from Gessner to just west of Moorberry Lane, north of Hammerly Boulevard.
SPRING BRANCH TRAIL PHASE ONE
To create further connectivity in the area, the District and Houston Parks Board partnered to design and build a first phase of Spring Branch Management District’s vision, which included community input through a series of public meetings.
This first project, called “Spring Branch Trail Phase 1,” was built and completed in December 2020, and runs from Blalock Road to Wirt Road and follows the same CenterPoint Energy easement that the Emnora Trail is on, north of Hammerly Boulevard. Click here to see a map of the completed trail and here to view a video produced by the District to celebrate the opening.
Notable features of this trail included trail connections to Schwartz Park and nearby neighborhoods at Lazy Springs Drive, Tilson Lane, Alcott Drive, and Ridgemore Drive; three safe road crossings at Blalock Road, Hollister Road, and Bingle Road with pedestrian and bicycle crosswalks, signage, and safe routes to nearby schools, including Buffalo Creek Elementary School, St. Jerome Childhood Center, Edgewood Elementary School, Landrum Middle School, and The Lion Lane School.
Ongoing maintenance of the trail, including weekly trash pickup, bi-weekly mowing, and trail and amenities upkeep, is provided by Spring Branch Management District.
SPRING BRANCH TRAIL PHASE TWO
Due to the Phase One Trail’s success and a desire to continue to create connected hike-and-bike trails within Spring Branch, the Spring Branch Management District is funding a Phase Two Trail to expand the existing Phase One trail from Gessner west to Shadowdale Drive withint the CenterPoint easement.
Update as of July 2022: The design team and project funder further refined the alignment of the planned trail, including the ped/bike crossing across Gessner. To view the updated overall trail alignment plan, design plans for the Gessner crossing, and an example crossing, click here.
Phase Two is now in permitting and will need to be reviewed by permitting agencies, such as the Army Corps of Engineers. CenterPoint is also planning work on two of their towers which will involve heavy equipment within the greenway. Construction is estimated to begin towards the end of 2022 or early 2023 after CenterPoint work is complete to avoid damage to the trail.
SPRING BRANCH TRAIL PHASE THREE
Design has begun on Spring Branch Trail Phase Three, which plans to connect from Blalock Road west through the Northbrook High School area to the existing Emnora Trail.
Receiving input on Phase Three, including the trail location, design, and amenities, is a crucial part of this process, and the community is encouraged to participate in future engagements and share this information.
UPCOMING SPRING BRANCH TRAIL PHASE TWO COMMUNITY MEETINGS
A virtual community meeting will take place December 13, at 6:00pm to discuss plans for Spring Branch Phase Three.
The proposed Spring Branch Trail Phase Three will connect from Blalock Road west through the Northbrook High School area to connect to the existing Emnora Trail.
To register for the meeting, click here. After registering, a confirmation email containing a link to join the meeting and a call-in phone number will be sent.
PREVIOUS SPRING BRANCH TRAIL PHASE TWO COMMUNITY MEETINGS
On Tuesday, June 29, 2021, the first virtual community meeting on the Phase Two project was held. To view materials from the community meeting, click below:
To provide input on the project, email email@example.com.
On Tuesday, October 7, 2021, the second virtual community meeting was held to provide an update on the progress of design and gather additional community input on trail alignment, connections and amenities.
To view materials from the community meeting, click below: