HOUSTON – (Realty News Report) – Having greenspaces in the city is good. Having green spaces designed for all to use is even better.
The Commons at Hermann Park, which broke ground over the weekend, is a case in point. The 26-acre site hugs the southwest corner of the 445-acre park sited between the Texas Medical Center, Rice University and the Museum District.
Landscape Architecture – Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates
The Commons is part of Hermann Park Conservancy’s 20-year master plan, designed by landscape architects Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates.
Project materials call the project a gateway to the park and a “connector” between the park and key institutions near it.
Highlights of the pending revitalization and re-imaging include a central lawn,
‘Welcome Garden,” several redesigned play areas (with shade), a watefront exploration venue with “boulder coves,” new picnic and grilling areas, refreshed pavilions, a carousel and a hard-to-miss playground centerpiece: a 45-foot-tall rocket ship slide and space capsule.
The thematic playscapes, designed for children of all abilities, are intended to encourage physical, sensory and social experiences — as well as good old fashioned fun.
Planting Thousands of Trees and Plants
Habitat restoration on a large scale is also part of the project. The addition of thousands of trees and plants, for example, will boost the habitat for wildlife and birds – about 600 species come through Houston annually. Meanwhile, The Conservancy will use regenerative agriculture on seven acres, rotating crops to restore park soil rather than pesticides and artificial fertilizers.
Construction is expected to start this month, with completion anticipated in January 2024.
The Commons is one of three projects funded by the Conservancy’s $51 million Play Your Park campaign. Earlier this year, the McWilliams Dog Park also held its groundbreaking.
Hermann Park has more than 6 million visitors a year. Hermann Park Conservancy and Houston Parks and Recreation Department are stewards of the park. A public-private partnership between them has completed $125 million in park improvements.
April 5, 2022 Realty News Report Copyright 2022
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File: Hermann Park Redo Underway
Photo credit: courtesy of Hermann Park Conservancy
File: Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates. Hermann Park Redo Underway