The Little Walnut Creek Greenbelt consists of 206 acres of hilly wooded areas cut by creeks and ravines near the intersection of 51st Street and US-183 in East Austin. Over four miles of informal trails stretch across the greenbelt, but there were no parking areas or other major improvements to the property. The greenbelt, parts of which were formerly zoned commercial and residential, was entirely rezoned to public use in 2017.
The parkland went through a significant vision planning process in 2018, and the plan was approved in early 2019. Through that process, priority projects were identified, with trails and play space being high on the list of community desired amenities. Austin Parks Foundation partnered with the Parks and Recreation Department (PARD), with support from St. David’s Foundation, to develop a trailhead on Springdale Road to give community access and make trail improvements, which were completed in 2021. The refined design of the adjacent play space has been completed and development of that space is anticipated to begin in late 2022.
Following the approval of the vision plan, the Pecan Springs - Springdale Neighborhood Association applied for a design services grant through the Austin Parks Foundation (APF) to help develop the preliminary design and layout for the play area, which includes play equipment, nature play features, adult fitness, dog park, and trails. The plan was presented to the community for feedback during a virtual meeting on October 21, 2020.
Please note that as in any construction project, schedules are projected as accurately as possible. All dates are subject to change due to the nature of construction and the weather.
December 2021: Virtual Community Meeting to share the updated design of the playground area (complete)
Early 2022: Design documentation (complete)
Early 2023: Complete permit plans and submit for the Site Plan Permit for Phase I (ongoing)
Early 2024: Receive Permit/Begin Phase I Construction
Virtual Community Meeting
- December 8, 2021
- At this meeting, the project team shared updates and reviewed the updated design and features that were developed for the playground area. Spanish interpretation was provided.
- Community Meeting Presentation (PDF)
Design Progress Meeting
Funding and Resources
Austin Parks Foundation received funding from St. David's Foundation to create a trailhead, implement trail improvements, conduct additional community engagement and create detailed designs for a new playground area.
Additional funds for the design and construction of the playground area were made available through APF Board Designated Funding, parkland dedication funds, and Parks and Recreation Department bond funding.
For additional information, contact Charles Mabry, Project Manager, at (512) 974-9481 or by email.
- Vision Plan Background
The Little Walnut Creek Greenbelt vision plan effort was initiated by area residents and was facilitated by the National Park Service's Rivers, Trails and Conservation Assistance program (RTCA). The greenbelt went through an extensive community-led planning process in 2018. Through that planning process, priority projects were identified, with trails and play space being high on the list of community desired amenities.
The proposed master plan was approved by the Parks and Recreation Board on January 22, 2019.
- Community Engagement through Planning Process
Public Input and Survey Summary
Public Input Summary
First Public Meeting
February 25, 2018
Givens Recreation Center
Public Engagement Summary
Second Public Meeting
April 3, 2018
Pecan Springs Elementary School Library, 3100 Rogge Lane
Summary of Second Public Meeting
Third Public Meeting
Thursday, Sep 27, 2018 6pm – 8pm
Education Service Center Region 13, State Capitol Room
5701 Springdale Rd, AustinPublic Meeting 3 - Presentation
- Trailhead Project
2019, Austin Parks Foundation (APF) applied to St. David's Foundation to develop a trailhead and improve some existing trails that have been carved out by bike riders and other users of this undeveloped park. There was also a desire from the community to work toward developing the playground area which needs a more detailed design to be ready for future funding and construction. APF was awarded funds for these projects and began designing the trailhead in 2019.
Virtual Community Meeting