Garners Bayou

HCFCD Restoring Garners Bayou in Humble

On September 26, 2022, Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) announced a $5.2 million channel restoration project on Garners Bayou, a tributary of Greens Bayou. Garners Bayou cuts through Humble after leaving the Bush Intercontinental airport area. I was driving by yesterday with a drone, so I thought I would check the status of the project.

Work started in the fall of 2022. The project was supposed to take 360 days. But from the photos below, it looks as though they may finish sooner.

Project Location

Garners covers a lot of territory. The project itself covers only about a mile out of more than 12 stream miles. See the two maps below.

Garners Bayou starts in the upper left and angles toward the very middle of this map before joining Greens Bayou in the lower center.
This closer view shows the project extent between Mesa Drive and Wilson Road.

Construction equipment accesses the work via Mesa Drive. The five photos below show the major segments of the repairs.

Photos Taken on 5/7/2023

Looking east from over Mesa Drive. Note the low water crossings. HCFCD started downstream and worked its way up to here.
Farther downstream, just past the low water crossing visible in the first photo above.
Note the major repair underway on the left.
Even farther downstream, note the off-channel stormwater detention basin on the left by the tank.
That’s the Wilson Road Bridge in the distance and the Atascocita Landfill in the upper left.

Level of Service Being Restored

Periodically, channels such as these need clean-out. Sediment washes downstream and the banks slump in, reducing the carrying capacity. So, instead of water staying in the channel during heavy storms, it spills out into surrounding neighborhoods and floods homes.

HCFCD rates channels in terms of a “level of service.” By that, the District means, it can safely handle a 2-, 5-, 10-, 25-, 50- or 100-year rainfall event. The District rates every segment of every channel in the county.

Backing up from the starting point in the series above, you can see how sediment has clogged the area under the Mesa Avenue Bridge. This doesn’t look as though its within the project scope, but I hope they clean it out.

Looking east at the Mesa Drive Bridge over Garners Bayou. Note sediment reducing flow under bridge.

Posted by bob Rehak on 5/8/2023

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