Named after the Bayou Greenways 2020 initiative, the 1.47-acre Bayou Greenways Park is meant to serve as a connection point and tree-lined oasis for those traveling on trails along White Oak Bayou. The park is surrounded by wooded forest areas and sycamore trees, and features a 50-foot grass knoll near the White Oak Bayou channel with views of the Houston skyline.
Park features include bicycle racks, a shaded boardwalk area, seating areas and panels along the lawn with poetry. A parking lot for park-goers can be found at 1648 Studemont Street.
“The opening of the beautiful new Bayou Greenways Park is another example of the united effort to make Houston one of the nation’s most park accessible cities,” said Kenneth Allen, interim director of the Houston Parks and Recreation Department. “Thank you to our generous partners who recognize the need and importance of park equity in our city and were bold enough to do something about it."
Launched in 2012 with the help of a $100 million voter-approved bond referendum, the Bayou Greenways 2020 initiative endeavors to create a 172-mile network of connected parks and trails in Houston. Parks like Bayou Greenways Park are funded through public-private partnerships that include the Houston Parks Board and the Houston Parks and Recreation Department.
The new park features panels and metal inscribed medallions recognizing the donors who helped bring it to fruition. The Kinder Foundation also previously provided a $50 million gift in support of the larger Bayou Greenways 2020 initiative, which allows the Houston Parks Board take on maintenance and preservation of 2,600 acres of greenspace, including mowing, litter cleanup and amenity restoration, according to a press release from the Houston Parks Board.
“We were inspired by the plan to create greenways and parks in areas of Houston that have little or no access to parks,” said Rich Kinder, chairman of the Kinder Foundation. “It is really meaningful to know that our investment in this project is being used to make sure that greenways and parks will be created along Halls, Hunting, Upper Greens and Sims bayous along with other major bayous.”
Another 39 miles of new trails are in various stages of planning, design and construction, according to the Houston Parks Board. Meanwhile, work on around 11 miles of greenway has been delayed by the permitting process or postponed to allow for coordination with other partners, according to the release.