Construction of the Commons began in April 2022 with the current site being closed to the public. To see a map of the affected 26 acres, please click here. The Commons has an estimated completion date of January 2024.
The Commons will be created in a 26-acre area in the southwest portion of Hermann Park, bordering the Houston Zoo to the east, Cambridge Street to the south, Fannin and Main Streets to the west, and Hermann Park’s Japanese Garden and McGovern Lake on the north / northwest side.
While this sizeable portion of the Park includes a natural point of entry into the Park, it is currently under-utilized and virtually ignored by the public, creating congestion and over-utilization in other parts of the Park. Architect Marlon Blackwell will be designing all of the structures and landscape architects Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA) will help us transform this under-developed area into an inviting gateway and lively community asset.
Our objective for the Commons, and our master plan, is simple: to ensure that the Park becomes an even more valuable place for all the citizens of Houston in the years ahead, contributing to the quality of life and serving as a place that unifies our community for all the years to come
The centerpiece of the Commons is the expansive Play Gardens, a new two-acre central playground that will reimagine the "play for all" legacy and accessibility of the Buddy Carruth Playground for All Children. The Commons play areas have been designed for a wide variety of experiences:
Each area also offers shaded seating areas for parents so children will never be out of sight and the whole family can enjoy the outdoor space.
The Commons will be a place where people can come together in a warm and gracious environment that engages all guests. Special features will include:
The restoration and conservation of the natural lands bordering McGovern Lake are central to the master plan, providing opportunities to connect with nature through: