As the San Antonio River Authority adds its newest community park within its district, the Escondido Creek Parkway will separate itself from the others.
There are seven parks in the SARA system.
“It will be the first in Karnes County,” SARA General Manager Suzanne Scott said. “This park has many more amenities than other parks. It will appeal to a variety of users because of the amenities.”
The Escondido Creek Parkway Project is a vision to create an attractive linear park with features that allow the community new opportunities to sit, stroll, run, play and enjoy the outdoors along a waterway full of benefits, according to the SARA website.
Bioswales are landscape features that collect polluted stormwater runoff, soak it into the ground and filter out pollution, which is what SARA added at the ECP.
“One thing we added is a bioswale feature,” Scott said. “We restored natural habitat in that area going into creeks to be filtered and allow excess runoff from the community into the creek. We can educated the connection of the tributary into the San Antonio River system, but not on a river and have connection. That is a good lesson for people to understand land and water interface.”
And with Kenedy dubbed the Horned Toad Capital of Texas, SARA helped create habitat for the little critters.
“There will be an interpretive habitat for the horned toad because Kenedy is the Horned Toad Capital of Texas,” Scott said.
While remaining on the educational angle for SARA, one factor with opening a park on a tributary and not the main river can be a learning tool.
“Tributaries do go dry,” Scott said. “We have an opportunity to educate because its dry now and make sure that we preserve the integrity of the creek with vegetation and manage it in a way to convey floodwaters.
“We will take out invasive species and plant native species to advance the stability of the creek’s natural elements. We have done that in other parks with the San Antonio River ecosystem project.”
SARA has contracts with 13 dams along the Escondido Creek tributary in Karnes County.