Wimberley, Texas– February 13, 2023- The Watershed Association (formerly the Wimberley Valley Watershed Association) has recently acquired the property at the Oaks at Blue Hole (501 Old Kyle Rd). The site is the gateway entrance of Blue Hole Park and is located in the heart of downtown Wimberley.
For over 30 years, the Watershed Association has been protecting the watersheds that feed unique springs, creeks, and rivers across the Hill Country. Having served as stewards and advocates for iconic places like Jacob’s Well, Blue Hole, Cypress Creek, and the Blanco River, they have worked to ensure that future generations have access to clean drinking water and have helped to preserve the irreplaceable beauty of the region. Through its many impact areas, the Watershed Association has served as a leader in creating water-focused public policy, land conservation, watershed protection, conservation science, and environmental education for youth and adults. One of their greatest accomplishments has been being a leader in the conservation movement that has established over 30,000 acres of private and public parkland and preserves in what has become the fastest-growing region in the United States.
“This new project is an exciting opportunity for the Watershed Association to reflect the community’s values of land and water stewardship and nature-based education at this unique site in the heart of Wimberley,” stated Parc Smith, Board President for the Watershed Association. The project will also serve to showcase and expand our newest program, Art4Water, which was launched in 2021 through the Sacred Springs Kite Exhibition to engage artists as storytellers to help us to more fully understand our connection to water and the importance of conservation and our spiritual connection to nature.
“In the coming year, the Watershed Association will begin a master planning process and capital campaign to reimagine the environmentally sensitive area as the gateway to Blue Hole Regional Park by creating a landmark project that demonstrates regenerative design and evokes inspiration and a renewed sense of responsibility towards our fragile region,” said David Baker, Executive Director of the Watershed Association.
The project will serve to further the Watershed Association’s impact areas and will incorporate community gathering spaces that will function as a hub for environmental education, artistic expression, cultural and performing arts, gardens, and shared contemplative spaces to experience nature. Additionally, the project will be a model for One Water design, an intentionally integrated approach to water management that values water at all stages of the water cycle-—rainwater harvesting, groundwater recharge, stormwater, greywater, and wastewater reuse—as a single resource.
Current tenants of the Oaks at Blue Hole will remain in place as planning is taking place over the next year. The Watershed Association looks forward to providing opportunities for collaboration and community input as the project evolves and is enthusiastic about co-creating a community conservation development project that welcomes Wimberley residents and visitors into a space that is aligned with the conservation ethic that is at the heart of this beautiful Valley.
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