Hurricane Harvey really took a toll on Houston. Over 30 inches of rain fell in many parts of Houston, with as many as 60 falling in some areas. All of that precipitation caused massive widespread flooding, set new records for rainfall, and even prompted the National Weather Service to revise their rain index color scheme based on Houston’s rainfall alone. Many parts of the city have yet to recover from the storm and catastrophic flooding. After nearly a year since Harvey devastated Houston, the much-beloved Johnny Steele Dog park is finally reopening to offer Houston-area dog owners a free place to let their dogs enjoy some wide open space right in the heart of the city.
The park opened its gates for the first time since Harvey yesterday. Located inside Buffalo Bayou Park, the Johnny Steele Dog Park regularly sees hundreds of dogs and dog owners each day since its opening in 2015. After the flooding and erosion caused by Hurricane Harvey, park officials had to remove almost 30,000 cubic yards of sediment from the dog park.
While they were cleaning up, park officials also added new seating for dog owners and separate entrances for large dogs and small dogs to ensure the safety of all furry friends. The separate ponds have been combined into one large pond with a water feature for all dogs, and there are dog washing stations nearby for post-pond cleanup.
“Changes to the dog park will enhance the site’s overall functionality for dogs and their owners as well as the Buffalo Bayou Park maintenance team,” Buffalo Bayou Partnership President Anne Olson says. “This area will experience high water from time to time but the design modifications should improve ongoing maintenance and operations.”
For free outdoor recreation, you can’t beat Houston’s parks – particularly if you’re a dog owner. Johnny Steele Dog Park is now open daily from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.