Phase 1 – Yuanaguana Garden

Before I get into the new play area at Hemisfair scheduled to open in 2015, it is important to note that the site has been home to children since the 1988 renovation of the site for the 20th anniversary of Hemisfair ’68.

The following is a synopsis of my involvement this section of the overall redevelopment of the site of the 1968 World’s Fair – HemisFair ’68.

The 1988 renovation of Hemisfair Park

Back in the mid-1980’s the city of San Antonio began making plans to commemorate the 20th anniversary of HemisFair ’68. The final result was a complete renovation of the former World’s Fair site which by this time had become a forgotten and derelict site in the heart of downtown San Antonio. For the southwest corner of the site which will now become Yuanaguana Garden the area was renovated into a basic park like layout with pedestrian walkways, open green space and children’s play area.

Having been a regular visitor to the park for the past 20 years I cannot ever recall a time where I did not see children enjoying the play area and parents enjoying the shaded benches near by.


Below are images of the area prior to the HPARC renovations. (Click on images for a closer look)

The 2014 / 2015 renovation of the children’s play area

With the renovation of the Eager House, Eagar Dependency and Carriage House completed the next section marked for renovation is the existing play space and structures located in the southwest corner of Hemisfair Park. This will be the first of three phases planned for Hemisfair, the other two are civic and tower parks which are covered in their own sections.

The evolution of the name for the new space

“Plaza de Artes” (2012)
“Play Escape” (2013)
“Yanaguana Garden” (2014)


Below are images from the public presentation for the new space in November of 2013. (Click on images for a closer look)

Below are some construction images of Phase – 1 (Click on images for a closer look)