AUSTIN, Texas — A 700-acre park is coming to East Austin, with 600 acres for public use and another 100 acres for residents living in the Whisper Valley community. The park, which will be called Whisper Valley Park, will be located just off State Highway 130 from FM 973 and extend east of Taylor Lane.
Whisper Valley is a fast-growing community that will have 7,500 residences.
More than $8 million will be invested in new trails, picnic areas, playgrounds, an amphitheater for events and more.
It’s part of a much larger plan to connect multiple natural spaces and parks through the Whisper Valley housing development, including Walter E. Long Park and Lake, Travis County's 14-mile trail system and the East Metropolitan Park – offering an estimated 20 miles of trails.
"Beautiful, with lots of trees, meadows and streams. The east is the last real area that Austin itself can grow into and annex land in. We felt like this was the future of Austin," said Douglas Gilliland, managing director of development with Taurus Investment Holdings, a partner in the Whisper Valley project.
The park, which encompasses an area designated as a Certified Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Federation, will also feature two programed areas for numerous community activities. The first area will be located adjacent to the community retail center at Braker Lane and FM 973, and the second will be situated near Phase 6 and 7 in the Whisper Valley community.
“We’re thrilled to announce this park, which makes Whisper Valley one of the most health-oriented communities in Austin and provides a positive way to reconnect residents with nature,” Gilliland said. “We’ve been working with the City of Austin for more than two years on the concept plan. It is a huge undertaking, but the result will be a spectacular addition to Whisper Valley and East Austin.”
The final design of the park will be completed in 2025, and construction will begin in 2026.
Whisper Valley resident Michael Wilt said he excited about the project.
"It's one of the amenities that drew me out to a community like this, where you can have access to open space and a lot of open space surrounding you," he said.
Phase 1A-1C will include the design and construction of miles of 12-foot-wide pedestrian trails that extend from the community retail center at FM 973 and run along Gilleland Creek to Taylor Lane.
Boomtown is KVUE's series covering the explosive growth in Central Texas. For more Boomtown stories, head to KVUE.com/Boomtown.