November 05, 2018
Cullinan Park Conservancy (CPC), in conjunction with the City of Sugar Land, hosted a groundbreaking for its first phase of improvements of the Park on Monday, November 5.
The improvements include a permanent restroom, a new trail, two new trailheads, a boardwalk, lake overlook, interpretive signage, landscape improvements, understory clearing, and additional benches (a few benches have recently been installed by local Boy Scouts and the City’s Parks & Recreation Department).
The improvements total approximately $1.2 million, of which the Conservancy has raised through primarily foundation grants, but also individual and corporate donations. The fundraising efforts started in 2015, with a challenge grant by The George Foundation, of which the first $250,000 raised was matched 1:1 (The Wortham Foundation donated $250,000 in early 2016) and the remaining $750,000 is being matched fifty cents to every dollar. The Brown Foundation also made a significant contribution in 2016 with a grant for $200,000.
“This one of a kind, blue-green oasis serving the greater Fort Bend and Houston communities,” remarked Conservancy Executive Director Angie Wierzbicki, “provides habitat for 250 species of birds and dozens of other types of wildlife.”
Gary Tuma, Conservancy Board President added, “The park has been a quiet respite for years for residents and visitors to the area. Now it will have more amenities so more people can take in nature in our ever-growing urban community.”
Construction for most of the development was bid out in the summer of 2018. At a public meeting on August 30, Millis Development and Construction was awarded the bid for most of the improvements, except the restroom building itself. Wallis Construction will be providing the restroom, which will be an aerobic system due to the absence of a sewer system at the Park. Water and electricity lines are a large part of the expense for this phase since the Park had none prior to this development.
The Park will remain open, as will most of the trails, with minimal fencing in the parking lot area near the construction. Visitors are asked to respect the Park and avoid the fenced in areas and construction zone. Construction is slated to finish at the beginning of March 2019.
The Conservancy was created in 2010 to advocate for, enhance and protect the natural beauty of Cullinan Park for all. Joseph S. and Lucie H. Cullinan Park (aka Cullinan Park) consists of 754 acres, just north of Sugar Land Regional Airport on Highway 6.