August 2022 Vol. 77 No. 8


Construction Theme Park Opens in Texas

Jeff Griffin | Senior Editor 

(UC) — When I was about nine years old, construction had just been started on a new residential subdivision adjacent to our neighborhood.

Riding my bike, one day I spotted a backhoe/loader parked near the front of a lot where a house was to be built. Of course, I stopped to investigate. I climbed up to the operator’s seat and found there was no key to start the machine, and the backhoe and loader buckets had been lowered to the ground. 

I position myself in the seat and had a wonderful time pushing and pulling levers, digging imaginary excavations and moving materials with the loader. 

I came back to my work often, until one day the machine was gone. 

I was born too soon. Today, there’s a theme park where boys (or girls and adults too), can actually operate various pieces of construction equipment. 

Dig World in Katy, Texas, was recently unveiled and is now open Thursday and Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. 

The 3.5-acre park is located at Katy Mills Mall (west of Houston) with its main entrance facing Interstate 10.

“Rides” include skid-steer loaders, mini excavators, a utility terrain vehicle (UTV) course, mini-excavator pond fishing, gem mining station and mini-exactor cone pickup. There also is a playground and pavilion with food and soft drink stands. 

Texas A&M University’s Department of Construction Science has an educational partnership with Dig World, where future generations can experience firsthand and learn about the dynamic construction industry. 

“Dig World is a perfect place to host field trips, community and corporate events, birthday parties, and much more,” said Jacob Robinson, co-founder of the park. Educational field trips include instructional materials prepared by Texas A&M. 

The admission fee for guests 32 inches and taller, with access to all rides, is $24.99. Children under 32 inches are free. 

“Before beginning a ride,” said Robinson, “a staff member gives thorough instructions. For example, with a skid-steer the guest will drive around a winding track. On an excavator, the operator can pick up objects and move them around.” 

Safety is a priority, Robinson stressed. Caterpillar machines are owned and maintained by the park. To operate a machine, seat belts are required. The speeds of drivable machines are set by governors, and the functions that utilize hydraulics have limitations to reduce total movement of components. 

Each machine is equipped with an emergency “kill” switch that cuts off all operations. There are safety parameters around all operational areas. 

COVID 19 protocols follow guidelines of the state of Texas, and masks currently are not required on the grounds. Sanitation stations are available throughout the park, and visitors are asked to practice social distancing. 

Dig World is owned and managed by Robinson and partner Rick Bennett. UC 


Dig World, 

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