A pool at San Antonio's Cassiano Park

Texas awards $20 million to support statewide parks projects

February 2, 2024

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) has awarded $20.6 million for upgrades to 40 community parks statewide, including a trio of million-dollar grants to support separate projects in San Antonio, Fort Worth and Dallas.

The competitive Local Park Grants will support the development of nature trails, native gardens, playgrounds, dog parks, splash pads, sports fields and other park amenities. Money from the program is disbursed to governments on a 50-50 reimbursement match basis. Once funded, sites must always remain open to the public and be properly maintained.

A combined $4.3 million will go to three big Texas metros, while 21 communities with populations under 500,000 will receive grants. Another 16 towns with populations less than 20,000 also will receive funds. 

San Antonio will get the TPWD maximum grant of $1.5 million to support the city’s $5.25 million Cassiano Park Revitalization Project. Plans call for expanding shade and native landscaping in the 2.89-acre greenspace and adding infrastructure to improve access to the park’s pools. Construction is slated for spring 2025.

Fort Worth will also receive $1.5 million to transform a decommissioned golf course into a nature-based space for recreation. The $5.5 million Sycamore Park Improvements project will include repurposing a water hazard into a wetland to improve water quality in Sycamore Creek. Adding paved walking trails, an overlook pavilion, soft surface mountain bike trails and cleanup of invasive vegetation are also planned. The project is currently in the engineering phase, with construction scheduled to start in spring of 2025.

Dallas will use a $1.3 million grant to support the Community Park at Fair Park Fitness Loop project. The project includes fitness equipment, lighting and site amenities.

TPWD awarded 16 grants of $750,000 to support non-urban park projects, including the Hooten Park project in Caddo Mills. The project calls for a baseball field, erosion control, tree protection, accessible routes, LED lighting and the relocation of overhead lines.

Missouri City received a similar grant to support its Sta-Mo Sports Park project. Elements include sport courts and fields, multi-purpose trails, a pump track, native landscaping, tree plantings and irrigation, a playground, picnic facilities, interpretive and park signage, site work and demolition.

The city of Brownfield in the Panhandle will also receive $750,000 for the Gillham-Howell Park Renovation project. That effort calls for a concrete trail, interpretive signage, a fishing pier, site work, utilities, native landscaping, a pavilion, a playground, pond aeration and site amenities.

recently announced the awarding of to cities big and small.

Established in 1965, the recreation grants provide a boost to Texas cities of every size to build new parks, conserve natural resources and develop educational programs for children. TPWD officials said the cumulative impact of the program is one of fostering a connection with nature and encouraging Texans to be good caretakers of the environment.

Strategic Partnerships, Inc. can provide information on contract opportunities, plus existing and future government funding. For more information, contact research@spartnerships.com.

Photo courtesy of the city of San Antonio

Paul Stinson

Paul Stinson has more than 15 years of journalism experience, including a decade covering the legislative and regulatory affairs of Texas, South Africa, and Germany for an affiliate of Bloomberg, L.P. His experience includes covering voting rights and the sectors of environment, energy, labor, healthcare, and taxes. Stinson joined the team in October as a reporter for SPI’s news publications, which include Government Contracting Pipeline, Texas Government Insider, and the newly-launched Government Market News. He is also a Fulbright Scholar to Germany, and an Arthur F. Burns Fellow. He holds a master’s in journalism from Indiana University.   

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