This morning, Houston City Council unanimously approved the purchase of Perry Homes’ 268-acre Woodridge Village tract in Montgomery County.
The ordinance that passed also included approval of an Interlocal Agreement between the City and Harris County Flood Control (HCFCD) that will govern the use and maintenance of the property as well as the terms of its purchase and development. See below.
As this deal wound its way through city and county political systems for the last 20 months, it morphed several times.
Terms of Deal that City Approved This Morning
Here’s what the City Council approved this morning:
- Total purchase price = $14,019,316.00.
- Of that, the City will contribute $4,021,500.00 in cash.
- And of that, $3,830,000.00 will go toward sole ownership of 73 acres within the 268 acres that the City will use to build a new wastewater treatment plant.
- The two parties will co-own, co-develop and co-maintain the rest of the property to be used for stormwater detention and parks.
- The parties will split the cost of the remaining property 50:50 which will be jointly owned, developed, operated and maintained.
- For its portion of the remaining cost, the City will donate property worth approximately $5,150,000 to HCFCD that the County can then use for flood control projects in areas of the City that flood.
- The City will also, at a minimum, match Harris County’s detention and fill mitigation requirements.
- The City will adopt and enforce NOAA’s new higher Atlas-14 Precipitation Frequency standards within the City and in the City’s extra-territorial jurisdiction.
- The City agreed to require a minimum detention rate of 0.55 acre-feet per acre.
- All this must happen within 120 days.
- If the sale falls through, nothing in the terms of the agreement obligates the seller to perform additional flood mitigation.
County Must Now Approve on December 15
Harris County Commissioners Court must still approve the Interlocal Agreement in its December 15 meeting before it becomes effective.
Woodridge Village contributed to flooding hundreds of homes in Elm Grove Village and North Kingwood Forest twice last year, because of insufficient detention.
No Mention of Lawsuits
Nothing in the terms of the sale or interlocal agreement mentions the hundreds of lawsuits that arose out of that flooding. They should not be affected.
Pace of Development To Depend on Speed of Funding
The Parties (City and County) agreed to jointly fund the cost of designing and constructing flood mitigation facilities on the Land and to work cooperatively to secure funding. They targeted completion of the project within five years.
Both Parties agree the Land can stay in its current condition until funds are jointly secured to build the project, which may be built in phases based upon available funding.
Any Project on the Land will involve gravity detention. In other words, no pumps will be involved. Perry Homes has already constructed approximately 60% of the required detention.
Stormwater Detention To Be Based on Current Needs
The amount of the Stormwater Detention allotted to each Party will be based on its pro rata share of costs contributed to the Project. The Parties agree that the Stormwater Detention shall only be used for mitigation of existing flood risks, and not to mitigate the flooding risks of any new developments that arise after the execution of this Agreement.
Martin Thanks Turner for Being Mayor for “All the People”
Mayor Pro Tem Dave Martin sponsored the ordinance that council approved this morning and worked to align support. Mayor Turner supported the agreement despite the fact that the majority of Kingwood voted for his opponent in the last mayoral election. In his presentation, Martin specifically commented on that and thanked the Mayor. He said that Turner promised after the election that he wanted to be mayor for all the people. Martin said this was proof that he was good to his word.
Posted by Bob Rehak on 12/9/2020
1198 Days since Hurricane Harvey and 447 since Imelda
The thoughts expressed in this post represent opinions on matters of public concern and safety. They are protected by the First Amendment of the US Constitution and the Anti-SLAPP Statute of the Great State of Texas.