Mercer’s new canoe launch features a 37-foot-long, four-foot-tall retaining wall and sidewalk to prevent erosion to the creek bank and improve safety for creek paddlers.

A creative new engineering project completed in February at Mercer Botanic Gardens is helping prevent soil erosion along Cypress Creek and serving as a new amenity for residents.

The project, which doubles as a water outfall and paved canoe launch, includes a 37-foot-long, four-foot-tall retaining wall and sidewalk to prevent erosion to the creek bank and improve safety for creek paddlers.

“This project gives park visitors another great access point to Cypress Creek and helps protect the banks of Mercer,” said Commissioner R. Jack Cagle. “This is just one of the many projects in Precinct 4 that helps us maximize taxpayer dollars while providing quality amenities to residents.”

Prior to the canoe launch’s opening, park-goers had to use a primitive dirt path and canoe launch that often stayed muddy and slippery during the rainy parts of the year. Because of the safety hazard for residents, that launch was eventually closed.

With the new launch in place, canoeists and kayakers now will be able to paddle all the way from Mercer to Jones Park at Spring Creek, which connects with Cypress Creek. A total of five Precinct 4 parks now feature canoe launches including Collins, Carter, Jones and Pundt parks.

The new canoe launch at Mercer Botanic Gardens is only accessible through the West Arboretum. Reservations are required. To make a reservation, call the Parks Reservation Office at 281-353-4196 or visit hcp4.net/community/parks/canoekayak.

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