The Commons at Hermann Park is gearing up for its grand opening April 13.

What's happening?

The Commons, located inside the 26-acre Hermann Park in Houston, has been under construction for two years and is finally set to open to the public Saturday with an opening ceremony.

The event will begin with a ribbon-cutting at 9 a.m. in the newly restored historic pavilion, now known as Wortham Pavilion, and followed by a variety of activities and entertainment.The Commons is located in the southwest portion of Hermann Park, bordering the Houston Zoo to the east, Cambridge Street to the south, Fannin and Main Streets to the west, and Hermann Park's Japanese Garden and McGovern Lake on the north side.

Parking is on a first-come, first-served basis.

How we got here

Construction of The Commons began in April 2022 under the $52 million Play Your Park campaign. According to the Hermann Park Conservancy, the project had three main focuses:The initiative aimed to revitalize The Commons and mold it into a connector between the Texas Medical Center, Houston Zoo, Rice University, and the Museum and Innovation Districts.

A closer look

A press preview of The Commons on April 6 revealed a few components visitors can expect to see in the new space.
  • Play Gardens, a new 2-acre central playground featuring eight different experiences that include state-of-the-art swings, a larger-than-life gorilla, a splash zone, a 45-foot-tall rocket ship slide, a wooded enclave and a carousel
  • Natural Spaces, a restoration effort that will provide more opportunities for people to connect with nature through natural habitats, an experiential Wetland Garden, a Stone Cove, and new plant and activity areas
  • Special features, new spaces where people can come together to interact, such as the Central Lawn, an expansive area where visitors can sit and enjoy informal sports activities; the Live Oak Terrace, a decked area designed around the park's iconic oaks; and the Historic Fannin Pavilion, a renovated central feature that now includes more natural light, food trucks, wooden tables and benches
New structures were designed by architect Marlon Blackwell and landscape architects Michael Van Valkenburg Associates.