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Houston Parks and Recreation Department

Joe Turner was appointed and approved by City Council as the Director of the Houston Parks and Recreation Department in 2004.

As the Director he directs and manages all parks, parkways, and greenspaces belonging to the City of Houston. This includes improvements to those properties and the management of any others assigned to be under his authority by the mayor and city council. It is also his duty to approve and direct all new improvements and maintenance of these properties. He is also authorized to make rules and regulations for park properties.

Under his leadership the Houston Parks and Recreation Department works daily to fulfill the Department’s mission:

 “To enhance the quality of urban life by providing safe well-maintained parks and offering affordable programming for our community.

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The National Recreation & Park Association, Disney, ABC & ESPN have collaborated to revitalize parks across the U.S., including a park right here in Houston through Parks Build Community!Thanks to everyone who took part! Voting is officially closed. The winning project will be announced on May 18!

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The Houston Parks and Recreation Department (H.P.A.R.D.) is composed of four divisions:

Recreation and Wellness
This division oversees the operation and programming of the department’s 60 community centers, the Metropolitan Multi-Service Center (M.M.S.C.), and the Lee and Joe Jamail Skatepark.

- Adaptive Recreation / Metropolitan Multi-Service Center
- Adult Sports
- Aquatics
- Community Centers
- Fitness Centers
- Golf
- Permits and Reservations
- Senior Sports and Recreation
- Tennis
- Youth Sports and Recreation

Greenspace Management
This division oversees the daily maintenance of Houston’s parkland, esplanades, greenspaces, urban forests and manages the operation of Lake Houston Wilderness Park.

- Lake Houston Wilderness Park
- LBJ Wildflower Planting Project
- Park Adopt Programs
- Urban Forestry
- Urban Garden Program

Facilities Management and Development 
This division is responsible for the administration of the Parks Master Plan and individual park Master Plans, implements the Capital Improvement Plan (in coordination with the General Service Department), oversees and coordinates park system improvements and expansion, provides Park Administration for Hermann and Memorial Park, and oversees the operation of HPARD’s Urban Park Rangers.

- Art in Parks
- Parks Master Plan
- Dog Parks
- Garden Sites
- Park Sites
- Playgrounds
- Skateparks
- Trails

Management and Finance
This division oversees the operations of all aspects of accounting, purchasing, information technology services, safety, and grant writing for the department and includes liaisons for HR, Payroll and Workers Compensation.

- Management and Finance
- Grands

HPARD LATEST NEWS                                                                                                                      More ...

Recreation Catalog Available Now
Art In Parks Online
Bayou Greenways 2020
Bayou Preservation Association – Memorial Park Demonstration Project
Buffalo Bayou Park Developments
Buffalo Bayou Park Trail Closed
Enjoy a visit to Lake Houston Wilderness Park

Memorial Park Master Plan
Park Master Plan
Seymour Lieberman Trail Refurbishment
Smoking Ban in City of Houston Parks - Becomes effective September 2, 2014.

CLOSED OR UNDER REPAIR / CONSTRUCTION                                                                                     More ...

Routine Maintenance / Repair and Improvement Projects
Anderson Park Tennis Court Lights/Parking Lot - August 6 – Further Notice
Buffalo Bayou Park Trail Closed - August 13, 2012 - Until Further Notice
Levy Park – January 2014 - Spring 2015
Meadowcreek Park Pavilion - May 18, 2015 – June 5, 2015
Metropolitan Multi-Service Center
(Pool, Fitness Center, & Activity Room 3) 
- May 18, 2015 - Closed Until Further Notice
Schweppe Park Playground Improvements - April – November 2015
Tranquillity Park Fountain - September 9, 2013 - Until Further Notice

Capital Improvement Projects                      
Guadalupe Park - May 7, 2014 – May 2015


» Buffalo Bayou Partnership
» Friends of Cherryhurst Park
» Friends of Emancipation Park
» Friends of Lee LeClear Tennis Center
» Friends of Mary Ann Francklow Park
» Friends of Mandel Park
» Friends of Woodland Park
» Grand Slam for Youth Baseball
» Heritage Society at Sam Houston Park
» Hermann Park Conservancy
» Houston Arboretum & Nature Center
» Houston Parks Board
» Memorial Park Conservancy
» Trees for Houston
» Willow Waterhole Greenspace Conservancy


» Discovery Green
» Gerald D. Hines Waterwall Park
» Heritage Society at Sam Houston Park
» Houston Museum of Natural Science
» Houston Zoo
» Market Square
» Miller Outdoor Theatre

» Capital Improvement Projects
» H.P.D. Crime Monitoring
» Houston Bike Share
» Mayor's Office of Special Events