The Montgomery County Veterans Memorial Commission is working to relocate the county’s existing memorial park from its site near the Montgomery County Tax Office in downtown Conroe to 8.3 acres at the southeast corner of I-45 and Hwy. 105 to give the memorial better visibility, Edwards said. Plans for the new location of the Montgomery County Veterans Memorial Park and Educational Center also include “the line”—a structure displaying submitted names of any veteran nationwide—a first responders memorial and an educational center, he said.
“This park is large enough there will be different areas. We’re also remembering and memorializing first responders,” Edwards said.
Edwards said the memorial will have an interactive component as well, featuring web-based biographies of the veterans listed in the memorial, making the entire memorial an educational tool.
The location of the future memorial park and educational center is in the county’s education corridor, Chief Financial Officer Judy Duroy said. The Montgomery County Library, Lone Star Monument and Historical Flag Park, and Heritage Museum of Montgomery County are located nearby, she said.
“We anticipate a lot of the ISDs to be using this tool because we’ll have something that will represent different wars, different conflicts,” Duroy said. “It’s such a place of learning.”
Earlier this year, Freedom Boulevard—the road providing access to the new park site—was dedicated in February.
The six-phase relocation and expansion project is estimated to cost $10 million-$12 million over a five- to seven-year period, Edwards said in an email. However, the scope of each phase may be adjusted based on architectural, construction and financial demands, he said.
Funds thus far for the project have come from grants, endowments, private donations and fundraising events as well as funding from Montgomery County and the city of Conroe, Edwards said.
“All of this is down the line, but it is not pie in the sky. … This is not some futuristic thing,” he said. “This is tangible work. We’ve been funded by county dollars and city dollars.”
All 13 cities in Montgomery County adopted resolutions in support of the relocated and expanded memorial park last year, he said.
“This memorial is built to inspire and have an educational experience. It is not just rock and mortar. It is not concrete and brick; it is meant to inspire and have an experience there when you come to this memorial,” Edwards said.