Doting dog owners, take note: a new dog park is set to be unleashed along Brays Bayou. Hermann Park Conservancy and the Houston Parks and Recreation Department just broke ground on the McWilliams Dog Park, a new, $2 million off-leash dog park along Brays Bayou.
Houston’s newest public dog park is slated for completion this winter, according to the conservancy. Visitors can expect a 1.5-acre space repurposed from a 2.6-acre area bordered by South MacGregor Drive and Brays Bayou, per a press release.
This new dog run was designed by Houston-based landscape architecture firm Lauren Griffith Associates, which also renovated Hermann Park’s trail system in 2011. Dog owners and their fur babies can expect: one of the largest interactive dog park water features in the city; separate areas for small and large breeds (always a plus when mixing pooches); canine agility courses; surface-level parking; and natural shade and placement on an elevated site, meant to be free from flooding.
Another plus of the park is that it's meant to increase access to Hermann Park and flow seamlessly into its existing public spaces, per a press release. It is considered the first step in launching Hermann Park’s new 20-year master plan, the conservancy adds. Fundraising for the dog park began in 2019, with 91 percent already secured. Meanwhile, the city’s parks and recreation department added an additional $896,000 in public funding for area lighting and water services.
“It is so exciting to take the first physical step towards bringing the McWilliams Dog Park to life,” said Doreen Stoller, president of Hermann Park Conservancy in a statement. “A request for a new dog park was the very first email we received during our master planning process, and the request continued to draw the most interest from Houstonians when asked what they wanted to see next in Hermann Park. We cannot wait for Park visitors and their furry friends to have a place of their own later this year!”