Thanks to a $15 million grant from The Moody Foundation, Waterloo Park to undergo creative transformation

February 6, 2017 by Kelly Daacon

Just steps from the Texas State Capital, you’ll find 11-acre Waterloo Park. Once alive with activity while hosting popular festivals, such as Fun Fun Fun Fest and the Austin Ice Cream Festival, the park has mostly been off-limits in recent years while crews worked on an intake building for the Waller Creek tunnel.

However, thanks to a $15 million grant from The Moody Foundation, the park will soon be undergoing a dramatic transformation to become more accessible and inclusive. A park of the future. The generous grant will be used to add an amphitheater and great lawn that can accommodate up to 5,000 people. The revamped park will also include a mile and a half of trails, gardens and play spaces, among other features.

Photo credit: Waller Creek Conservancy

The changes at Waterloo Park are all part of a comprehensive effort to improve Waller Creek between the UT campus and Lady Bird Lake. The Waller Creek Conservancy said the Waterloo Park improvements will start this year and should be completed by 2019.

Thomas Phifer & Partners is the firm that was selected to design the Moody Amphitheater. It features an overhead structure that’s part steel, part translucent.

“It’s a bold project,” said Austinite Ross Moody, trustee of the Moody Foundation. “The park felt neglected. It needed help. We really felt like we needed to breathe some fresh air into it. We’re really quite excited about the transformation.”

The surrounding area is in the midst of a dramatic transformation. In addition to the planned improvements at Waterloo Park and elsewhere along Waller Creek, UT’s new Dell Medical School is now open and talks are underway to redevelop the University Medical Center Brackenridge site once the hospital closes and relocates. The Red River Cultural District, home to a number of music venues, is nearby.

BIG RED DOG is providing engineering services for the ambitious Waller Creek project which will transform a dilapidated and lifeless creek into a vibrant urban waterway complemented by dynamic parks, bridges, and open and interactive spaces that engage the public. Once finished, it will be a world-class destination.

Read more about Waterloo Park’s transformation in the original Austin American-Statesman article here, and learn more about BIG RED DOG’s public infrastructure experience on our projects page. BIG RED DOG is an industry leader in civil, MEP, traffic, and structural engineering. Contact us today to see how we can work together to make your project a success.

Written by Kelly Daacon

Kelly Daacon

Kelly Daacon, P.E. is the Marketing Director for BIG RED DOG, responsible for marketing, branding, design, content, and digital media initiatives for the firm. Kelly graduated from the University of Central Florida with a Master’s degree in Civil Engineering and is a licensed Professional Engineer in the state of Texas. In his spare time, he enjoys running at Lady Bird Lake and hanging with his crazy dog Shiner. Kelly and his wife live in east Austin.