Kinder Foundation donates $70M to speed up Memorial Park plan

By Aaron Barker - Senior Web Editor

HOUSTON - The Kinder Foundation donated $70 million to speed up the master plan aimed at improving and expanding Memorial Park, one of the most popular parks in Houston.

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Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner announced the donation Wednesday, saying it is the largest donation ever made in the 182-year history of the city’s parks department.

The money will be used to help build an earthen bridge over Memorial Drive that runs through the heart of the park, Turner said. The bridge will connect the north and south sections of the park.

Turner said the money will also help pay for a new section of the park called the Eastern Glades, which will include a lake and wetlands.

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A multi-use trail, improved multi-use sports fields and some flood mitigation projects in the park will also be covered with the money, Turner said.

"The gift allows $600,000 a year to flow from the original Memorial Park plan to other parks under the city Parks Department's Neighborhood Playground initiative," Turner said.

About 4 million people visit Memorial Park every year, Turner said.

VIDEO: Turner announces donation

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