City to receive grant to build fitness court at Katy City Park

By George Slaughter, News Editor
Posted 7/28/22

The Katy City Council Monday voted to accept a $50,000 National Fitness Campaign 2022 grant from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas for the creation of a fitness court at Katy City Park, 5850 Franz Road.

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City to receive grant to build fitness court at Katy City Park

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The Katy City Council Monday voted to accept a $50,000 National Fitness Campaign 2022 grant from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas for the creation of a fitness court at Katy City Park, 5850 Franz Road.

Kevin Browne, the city’s parks director, prepared the grant application. In a memo to the council, Browne wrote that additional money would be needed for installation of the concrete slab and surfacing where the fitness court would go, along with equipment and any customized artwork. The council voted to authorize spending an additional $92,350 in parks bond money for those things.

When completed, the fitness court will have areas for people to do a variety of exercises to improve their physical fitness.

In the city’s application, Browne wrote that the city has 10 developed parks, a community center and two more park areas in development.

“We are also undertaking our first-ever Parks, Trails and Recreation Master Plan to provide planning for the future growth of our parks system and identify potential areas for trail connections to connect our parks across the city and provide alternative mobility opportunities to the community,” Browne wrote.

“The department currently oversees facility rentals for the community center, park pavilions and athletic fields, community wide special events, summer and after school youth programs and we are continually searching for new programs and events to provide quality leisure activities and events for the community,” Browne wrote.

Browne said the fitness court will be built on the north side of Katy City Park, near the covered basketball court and the Play Station Playground.

“The Play Station Playground at Katy City Park was one of the first all-inclusive playgrounds in the area when it was built in partnership with the Be An Angel foundation, and remains one of the most popular amenities in the area today,” Browne wrote.

Council authorizes Harvest Plaza improvements

In a separate parks-related issue, the council approved a $378,100 agreement with LJA Engineering for professional design services to the historic downtown plaza.

Chris LeBlanc, vice president of land development at LJA Engineering, shared a rendering with the council that illustrated what the finalized plaza will look like.

“This has been a long time coming,” LeBlanc said. “COVID got in the way of us completing the project.”

Among the improvements, LeBlanc said LJA Engineering and the city would work to maintain the iconic water tower. He said they would add a shaded structure that, when completed, will cover the temporary stage that the city has purchased. In this way, he said, the stage would get coverage in all kinds of weather. Other shaded areas are to be built or planned in the plaza, he said.

A historical component is also being planned for the park. The emphasis there would be on Katy’s history. LeBlanc said in the future, the city’s Christmas tree would be placed there instead of its customary site in front of the City Hall building.

Katy City Park, fitness center, Katy Harvest Plaza, Katy City Council

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