Willow Fork Park opens to public in southwestern Katy

The Willow Fork Park playground includes a swing set.

The Willow Fork Park playground includes a swing set.

Willow Fork Park, at the Grand Parkway and Cinco Ranch Boulevard, opened Nov. 6. The park, a joint venture between Willow Fork Drainage District and Katy ISD, was expected to open in July.Construction, however, was delayed due to flooding last spring, said Richard Ward, Willow Fork Drainage District Board President.

The park includes a walking trail, pavilion and playground as well as a 4-acre lake, which Ward said area residents and visitors can use for catch-and-release fishing, paddle boarding and kayaking, Ward said. It will be open from dawn to dusk and will be monitored 24 hours a day with security cameras and an on-site security guard.

Willow Fork Park differs from the drainage district’s other parks—Central Green at La Centerra and Exploration Park at 15020 Cinco Park Road—because it is “passive-use,” Ward said.

“Central Green is more of an activity-driven park,” he said. “Exploration has a lot of [play structures] for little kids. This park is open for general use.”

Ward said he already has received requests, but the park will not accept reservations for the pavilion—at least for the first year. However, since Katy ISD owns the land for the park, he said the school district will be allowed to schedule events.

KISD Superintendent Lance Hindt said the school district plans to use the park for cross-country track practices, and meets and class lessons.

“Our science teachers can’t wait to get their classes out here,” he said.

KISD signed a 50-year lease with WFDD to build and operate the park. Construction for the park was funded through a 2011 WFDD bond, said WFFD general Council Member Patti Hopper. WFDD residents approved a master parks plan, which also included the development of Central Green and Exploration Park.

Hopper said the drainage district’s next step is to continue working on an interlocking trail system to connect the parks.

[g-slider gid="203002" width="100%" height="55%"]


As many as 31 stores across nine states will be shuttered as Fry's Electronics fizzles out due to market changes and the pandemic. (Courtesy Qygen, Wikimedia Commons)
Fry's Electronics short circuits, calls it quits after nearly 36 years in business

As many as 31 stores across nine states will be shuttered as Fry's Electronics fizzles out due to market changes and the pandemic.

A lone runner jogs on a snow-covered road in Austin. Transportation projects across the city were briefly paused due to Winter Storm Uri. (Jack Flagler/Community Impact Newspaper)
ERCOT: Texas power system was less than 5 minutes from collapse during winter storm

ERCOT's CEO offered details into what led to the massive blackouts that left millions of Texans in the cold last week.

Emerging technology and alternative energy sectors could help ease the blow of an oil and gas industry downturn in Houston caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, a Houston-area economist said. (Courtesy Visit Houston)
Greater Houston area could see economic relief from pandemic around mid-2021, economist says

Emerging technology and alternative-energy sectors could help ease the blow of the downturn in Houston's oil and gas industry caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Most of the electric grid in Texas is managed by the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, which is not linked to other national interconnected systems. (Courtesy Electric Reliability Council of Texas)
Harris County to begin exploring alternatives to Texas power grid at Feb. 26 meeting

Following the winter storm-induced statewide power outages last week that left thousands of Harris County residents without heat amid freezing temperatures, the Harris County Commissioners Court will begin exploring what it would take for Harris County to leave the state's power grid at its Feb. 26 meeting.

Katy voters will elect council members for Wards A and B for three-year terms in the upcoming May election. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
4 candidates running for Katy City Council in May election

Four candidates are running to fill two seats on Katy City Council in the upcoming May election.

The new Fort Bend Epicenter multipurpose facility could be used as a spot for trade shows and sporting events, could act as a large-scale shelter for county residents in an emergency and more. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
New large-scale multipurpose complex coming to Fort Bend County

A new 230,000-square-foot multipurpose facility dubbed the Fort Bend Epicenter complex will soon be erected in Fort Bend County.

Widespread power outages affected millions statewide during Winter Storm Uri. (Hannah Zedaker/Community Impact Newspaper)
Here’s how northwest Houston legislators have responded to widespread winter storm power outages

Local leaders have spoken out about what they believe went wrong and how they plan to prevent similar disasters in the future.

The Texas Education Agency has given districts the option to apply for waivers that allow districts to require non-testing students to learn remotely from home on scheduled district testing days. (Jen Para/Community Impact Newspaper)
Katy ISD non-testing students will learn from home on testing days

Katy ISD will begin limiting how many students are in schools on STAAR, EOC and SAT testing days to help ensure student safety during the coronavirus pandemic.

Katy ISD will reopen campuses Feb. 23 for both in-person and virtual learning. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Katy ISD to reopen campuses Feb. 23 following lifting of water advisories

Katy ISD will reopen campuses Feb. 23 for both in-person and virtual learning.

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo
FEMA to administer 126,000 COVID-19 vaccinations at NRG Stadium

The site is one of four FEMA-led vaccination hubs in the country.