If you’ve been wondering what Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) is up to, check out this interactive GIS Map on HCFCD.org. It shows all active capital and maintenance projects, their exact locations, and budgets. It’s one of several interactive GIS maps that can give you critical information about flood risks, flood maps, mowing schedules, and more.
Active Projects for January 2021
The map below shows active HCFCD projects for January 2021. HCFCD says it updates the maps in the first week of each month. Projects that start after that may not show up until the following month. Active projects include both capital (new construction) and maintenance projects.
Click on the map to launch the app. Click on any project listed on the left or corresponding number on the map to review project description, budget and location in all Harris County Commissioners Court Precincts.
You will find both the legend and filters in the upper right corner. Red circles represent capital projects and black circles represent maintenance projects. To focus only on one type, click the layer icon in the far upper right. Press one type of project or the other to deselect it.
What Capital Projects Include
Capital projects include major projects that reduce flooding risks and damages by:
- Increasing stormwater conveyance capacity in bayous and drainage channels
- Excavating stormwater detention basins.
Stormwater detention basins reduce flooding risks and damages during heavy rain events by safely storing excess stormwater and slowly releasing it back to the bayou when the threat of flooding has passed.
More About Maintenance Projects
Maintenance projects include repair projects aimed at returning flood damage reduction channels and other infrastructure to their original designed level of performance by:
- Repairing sinkholes, slope failures and other damage caused by erosion
- Removing sediment that can reduce stormwater conveyance capacity.
Smaller maintenance projects grouped together under one construction contract are often given both individual Project Identification Numbers and an umbrella number that begins with the letter “Z,” since there is often more than one watershed involved in the group. “Z-packages” have numbers such as Z100-00-00-X223.
What Map Does NOT Include
This map does not include flood damage reduction studies or projects in other preliminary phases; smaller maintenance projects performed by Flood Control District work crews; or completed construction projects.
One of the first things that strikes me about the January map is the lack of projects in the northeastern portion of the county. To be fair, two small maintenance projects have started in Kingwood since the map above was compiled. But still, a glance at the map shows that projects are heavily skewed toward the south, central and western sides of the county.
Example: The construction projects now underway on Brays, White Oak, and Hunting Bayous total more than $100 million. But there are ZERO construction projects underway in Kingwood, Humble, Huffman, Atascocita, Spring, Tomball, and Crosby – all areas hard hit by Harvey.
Commissioner’s Court has pushed the Flood Control District to start projects in lower income areas first based. A majority of commissioners worry that low income residents are less able to recover from floods. They also worry that money in the flood bond won’t cover all projects identified in the 2018 flood bond. Some have even talked about floating another bond.
Good luck with that if they don’t adopt a more equitable definition of “equity” which the 2018 flood bond promised!
Posted by Bob Rehak on 1/25/2021 based on public information provided by HCFCD
1145 Days since Hurricane Harvey