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Transportation

PHOTOS: Bayou Greenways Unveils Long-Awaited Bike And Pedestrian Bridge

Cyclists and walkers now have a new option in Houston’s East End

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  • Cable supports on Mason Park Bridge  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    Cable supports on Mason Park Bridge (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • The Mason Park Bridge is 485 feet long with 70-foot towers and cables. (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    The Mason Park Bridge is 485 feet long with 70-foot towers and cables. (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • Entry and seating area at Mason Park Bridge  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    Entry and seating area at Mason Park Bridge (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • The bridge links two sections of Mason Park in Houston's East End  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    The bridge links two sections of Mason Park in Houston's East End (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • Towers of Mason Park Bridge  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    Towers of Mason Park Bridge (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • Seating area on the Mason Park Bridge (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter  )
    Seating area on the Mason Park Bridge (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
  • Detention Pond and wildlife area next to the Mason Park Bridge  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
    Detention Pond and wildlife area next to the Mason Park Bridge (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
  • Brays Bayou at Mason Park facing the 75th Street Bridge.  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
    Brays Bayou at Mason Park facing the 75th Street Bridge. (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
  • Trail along Brays Bayou at Mason Park  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
    Trail along Brays Bayou at Mason Park (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
  • Brays Bayou at Mason Park  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
    Brays Bayou at Mason Park (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
  • Detention pond and trail along Brays Bayou at the Mason Park Bridge (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
    Detention pond and trail along Brays Bayou at the Mason Park Bridge (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
  • Plantings alongside Brays Bayou and the Mason Park Bridge  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    Plantings alongside Brays Bayou and the Mason Park Bridge (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • View of Mason Park Bridge through the trees (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    View of Mason Park Bridge through the trees (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • View of Mason Park Bridge and Brays Bayou Trail  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    View of Mason Park Bridge and Brays Bayou Trail (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • View of Mason Park Bridge along Brays Bayou  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    View of Mason Park Bridge along Brays Bayou (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • Before the construction of the Mason Park Bridge, walkers and cyclists had to use the 75th Street Bridge to get from one side of the park to the other.  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
    Before the construction of the Mason Park Bridge, walkers and cyclists had to use the 75th Street Bridge to get from one side of the park to the other. (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter)
  • Residents near Mason Park in the East End have objected to one proposal that would put the Hobby Airport light rail on 75th Street in the East End.  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter/Houston Public Media )
    Residents near Mason Park in the East End have objected to one proposal that would put the Hobby Airport light rail on 75th Street in the East End. (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter/Houston Public Media )
  • City Council Member Robert Gallegos said light rail on 75th would interfere with the Mason Park improvement plan.  (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter/Houston Public Media )
    City Council Member Robert Gallegos said light rail on 75th would interfere with the Mason Park improvement plan. (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter/Houston Public Media )
  • Puente Del Parque Mason, Gran Inauguracion, Sabado 22 de Septiembre (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )
    Puente Del Parque Mason, Gran Inauguracion, Sabado 22 de Septiembre (Photo Credit: Gail Delaughter )

You round a curve on a wooded path and they come into view, the 70-foot towers and cables of the new Mason Park bike and pedestrian bridge.

"This bridge is a beautiful bridge in its own right with some pretty impressive engineering, but it's also connecting two parts of a really great City of Houston park," said the Houston Parks Board’s Doug Overman.

Overman explained how the 485-foot bridge connects walkers and cyclists to the Brays Bayou trail and the Bayou Greenways system.

It also provides an important link inside Mason Park, a 104-acre property that features busy athletic fields, along with natural areas and wildlife habitats. The bayou runs through the middle of the park and Overman said there really wasn't an easy way to get across it.

"You had to go all the way back to 75th Street and use a really narrow sidewalk with buzzing traffic passing by you, and not a really pleasant way or practical way to get from one side to the other," explained Overman.

The Mason Park Bridge costs $5.7 million. It was paid for with a mix of public and private money.

This Saturday, September 22, there will be a big celebration at Mason Park to mark the bridge's grand opening.

 

EDITOR’s NOTE: This story was updated to reflect that Doug Overman works with the Houston Parks Board, not with Bayou Greenways.

Gail Delaughter

Gail Delaughter

News Anchor

From early-morning interviews with commuters to walks through muddy construction sites, Gail covers all aspects of getting around Houston. That includes walking, driving, cycling, taking the bus, and occasionally flying. Before she became transportation reporter in 2011, Gail hosted weekend programs for Houston Public Media. She's also covered courts in...

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