Thousands of people swim, hike, or pedal bicycles along Barton Creek, but few understand how this twisty, beloved stretch of greenbelt was preserved for public use.
And it almost wasn’t.
Creators of a new interactive map and timeline that explains the history of the Barton Creek Greenbelt will launch their project with a live demonstration at 11:30 a.m. Saturday at the Beverly S. Sheffield Center at Barton Springs.
“It’s a fascinating history and it illustrates how people, if they band together and organize, can triumph in saving our natural environment despite the political and economic forces standing in the way,” says Karen Kocher, executive producer of the project. Kocher, a professor of practice in the Department of Radio-Television-Film at the University of Texas, also created the Living Springs documentary series.
You can explore the new website here. (I’m particularly excited about the map page – a photo I snapped of a man playing with his dog in the creek is used as an icon for the Barking Springs pullout.)
The site is loaded with archival photos, newspaper clippings and quotes from people who visit the greenbelt and pool. It includes information from the 1950s until present day, including interviews with artists, cyclists, swimmers, cavers and more.