Tag Archive for: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

Harris County Changes Proposed Project Lists for HUD Funding

In a transmittal to Harris County Commissioners Court today, Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) updated commissioners on how it hopes to spend $863 million in U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) funds.

Two projects in the Kingwood Area remain funding priorities: Taylor Gully Channel Improvements and Woodridge Village Stormwater Detention. However, the stormwater detention, currently listed as an alternate backup project, is being split up into two smaller projects to help improve funding chances for the most critical component. See more details below.

Ins and Outs of Funding

The HUD money comes in two “buckets” with different requirements – Disaster Relief ($322 million) and Mitigation ($541 million). Both buckets fall under HUD’s Community Development Block Grant Program (CDBG). CDBG’s flexibility lets people and communities design and implement strategies tailored to their own needs and priorities.

When I last reported on the CDBG lists, the Lake Houston Area had one project in each bucket.

  • In Disaster Relief, the Woodridge Village Stormwater Detention Basin was “below the line.” That means it was an alternate on the backup list; a primary project would have had to have been canceled for it to receive funding.
  • In Mitigation, Taylor Gully Improvements were above the line, i.e., primary recommendations.
Extent of Woodridge excavation when paused before applying to HUD

Changes Outlined in Transmittal

The latest updated project lists feature five main changes. They affect both Lake Houston Area projects. But first, let me explain the others that are changing, because their financial impact affects everything else.


  • Deleted the Riggs Road Stormwater Detention Basin (Part 2) from the recommended DR list, saving $6.5 million.
  • Transferred the Boudreaux Basin (Phase 1) from the DR list to Mitigation, so that it could benefit from the longer timeline for Mitigation projects. This project is between Willow Creek and SH99 at Huffsmith Kohrville Road. The transfer will free up another $38.6 million on the DR list.
  • Moved an East TC Jester Stormwater Detention Basin from the mitigation list to the DR list. This put $23.8 million back on the DR list.
  • Removed the Mercer Stormwater Detention Basin from the mitigation list without transferring it to DR.

Thus, you would think approximately $21.3 million was freed up on the DR list. That would theoretically let the Woodridge Stormwater Detention Basin move up from “below the funding line.” However, it remains below…at least for now.

Moreover the Woodridge Stormwater Detention Basin has morphed into two projects. One provides the detention required to help mitigate Taylor Gully now. The other provides an extra safety margin as a hedge against future developments.

Splitting the detention up into two smaller pieces gives HCFCD more flexibility and greater confidence that the most important part will get funded.

The Woodridge/Taylor Gully discussion in the document is a bit confusing unless you speak HUD.

Amy Crouser, an HCFCD spokesperson provided this translation. Regarding the two DR detention projects, she said that the detention basin which HCFCD already began excavating (and which they paused in November 2023) remains the top priority.

“The second basin will provide additional regional stormwater detention. Splitting the project helps us ensure the compartment of the Woodridge basin that mitigates Taylor Gully can move forward,” said Crouser.

She concluded, “The ultimate goal is to eventually construct both compartments. This follows our traditional rationale for phasing projects when possible and practicable. Both compartments will be advanced to bid-ready state using local dollars. That will give us the maximum flexibility to advance the projects.” 

For More Information

This HCFCD document titled CDBG Program Financial Planning & Performance Management, lays out all the costs, restrictions, deadlines and accountabilities related to all the projects on each list.

Posted by Bob Rehak on 4/23/24

2429 Days since Hurricane Harvey