Discovery Green

Designers: Hargreaves Associates | City: Houston, TX | Project Type: LEED
Date Visited: 1.22.13
Location: Discovery Green Houston, TX 77010
Size: 11.78-acre
Cost: $125 million
Official Opening Date: October 2008


Once an undeveloped concrete eyesore, Discovery Green has been transformed into a 12-acre, LEED Gold certified public park located in Houston’s dense urban core. Opened in 2008 as the result of a successful public-private partnership between the City of Houston and Discovery Green Conservancy, Discovery Green has been incredibly well-received by millions of visitors.

Discovery Green’s Mission Statement:

“To provide an uncommonly beautiful, urban green space in the heart of Houston that serves as a village green for our city, a source of health and happiness for our citizens and a window into the incredible diversity of talents and traditions that enrich life in Houston.”


Located across from the George R. Brown Convention Center, Discovery Green had once been giant expanses of parking lot space before the land was purchased by the City of Houston in 2002. Using community input generated with Projects for Public Spaces, in 2005, Hargreaves Associates was appointed the design team for Discovery Green. Today, the expansive public park consists of eleven different gardens, four water features, two restaurants, various play areas, performance spaces, free wi-fi, and a underground 620-stall parking garage.

Other than its role as Village Green in downtown Houston, Discovery Green’s main draw is its programming, which generates approximately 70% of the visits to the park. More than 800 public and private events are held each year, ranging from those in the arts to health and fitness as well as a weekly farmers market. In the winter, the park sets up a temporary ice skating rink, attracting more than 20,000 annual skaters.

Discovery Green’s popularity and success has also been a huge economic catalyst for more than $500 million in downtown development projects.

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