Harris County Flood Control District to Remove Sediment From Four Channels That Drain Into Federal Reservoirs

Storm Debris removed from a Harris County Bayou. HCFCD photo

HARRIS COUNTY (Covering Katy News) – The Harris County Flood Control District will begin construction March 19 on a $13.3 million maintenance project that starts with removing accumulated sediment and making priority repairs on a portion of Horsepen Creek in the Addicks Reservoir watershed. Future project sites in this pilot project include Langham Creek, Bear Creek and a Langham Creek tributary east of Bear Creek Village.

On January 30, 2018, Harris County Commissioners Court awarded a $13.3 million construction contract to low bidder Lecon Inc. for this package of work, which is part of a larger effort to investigate the current condition and capacity of all channels for which the Flood Control District has property rights that flow into Addicks and Barker reservoirs. The goal of this investigation is to assess and repair impacts from recent flood events on channels that carry stormwater into the federal reservoirs from surrounding neighborhoods. The reservoirs themselves are owned, operated and maintained by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

“These projects are badly needed to help mitigate future flooding in several parts of the county,” said Harris County Judge Ed Emmett. “Flood control is a complex problem that is the county’s priority.”

Construction begins in mid-March on Horsepen Creek, formally identified as HCFCD Unit U106-00-00, from near Hamstead Park Drive to the reservoir, and is expected to take several months. Other project sites also are moving toward construction this year:

  • Final bid-ready construction plans are under review for the Bear Creek project site, from Greenhouse Road to just inside the reservoir.
  • The Langham Creek project site, from State Highway 6 to the reservoir, is in design.
  • The Flood Control District is coordinating with the Corps on a permit and other preliminary details in connection with the project site, which is located on reservoir property near Hidden Springs Drive.

Part of the Flood Control District’s overall maintenance program, this project follows the Tax Day 2016 and Hurricane Harvey storms, which sent record levels of sediment-laden stormwater through the channels leading into the federal reservoirs. Deposited sediment can impede stormwater and reduce the capacity of channels to carry water.

The contract calls for removal of approximately half a million cubic yards of sediment.

Recent storms also caused severe erosion in many areas. More than $5 million of the pilot project is for repairs to the damaged banks along Horsepen Creek, Bear Creek and the other channels in the pilot project.

Addicks and Barker reservoirs were built in west Harris County by the Corps after disastrous floods of 1929 and 1935. They are designed to temporarily hold back stormwater and prevent damages along Buffalo Bayou, downtown Houston and the Port of Houston. Most Flood Control District easements end at the limits of the federal-owned land.

Rainfall within the 138-square-mile Addicks Reservoir watershed drains along 159 miles of open waterways, including Langham Creek and its major tributaries, such as South Mayde Creek, Bear Creek, and Horsepen Creek.

Rainfall within the 126-square-mile Barker Reservoir watershed drains along 47 miles of open streams, including Mason Creek and Upper Buffalo Bayou.

Updates on the project are available on the Flood Control District website, www.hcfcd.org.

Members of the public with questions or comments may call the Flood Control District’s Project and Study Information Line at 713-684-4040, or email ProjectCommunications@hcfcd.org.

See map below.

Courtesy HCFCD