- The Gateway Project is committed to preserving the character of the historic Henshaw House and surrounding grounds while providing for its current function as a premier science and nature education facility. By creating a more open and inviting physical presence for the center and making needed repairs, Gateway renovations will enhance our ability to serve the needs of all visitors.
In November 2013, City of Bellaire residents voted for a bond referendum for $500,000 to be used for improvements to the Henshaw House and Russ Pitman Park, operated by the Nature Discovery Center. Generous funding from community groups and foundations totaling $760,000 also transformed the Gateway Project dream into a reality.
To purchase an engraved brick, check out the Donor Brick Campaign page.
Gateway Phase One – Complete
Phase One of the Gateway Project, the renovation of the 1925 Henshaw House that serves as the nature center, was successfully completed in spring 2014. This included new interior and exterior paint, new wall coverings, new blinds, new office furnishings, refinished floors, and much, much more!
Gateway Phase Two – Underway Now
Phase Two will create a bright, fresh, and welcoming feeling in the one acre surrounding the Center by renovating animal enclosures, adding a new outside restroom, redesigning the native landscaping, and building new sensory gardens.
The redesigned animal enclosures will provide enlarged space for our outdoor animals in a more natural environment making viewing more accessible for kids of all ages. The new restroom will help us better accommodate large groups. The deck of the new outdoor bathroom will feature a trough sink at child height that will allow 4 kids to wash their hands at the same time, and added bathrooms will reduce strain and wait time for our three current restrooms.
The Center will remain *OPEN* to visitors throughout the project, which is expected to be complete in March 2017. Save the date for our renovation reveal event “Gateway to Nature” on Saturday May 6th at 10am.
Thank you for your patience as we make exciting changes to serve you better!