February 22, 2023 -- Houston City Council approved funding for a significant flood mitigation project today that will appropriate $15.2 million to the Inwood Detention Basin Interlocal Agreement between the City of Houston and the Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD). Harris County Commissioners Court approved its portion of the Interlocal Agreement with the City on Tuesday, February 22, 2023.
Inwood Forest is the first of four Hazard Mitigation Grant Projects approved by FEMA following Hurricane Harvey in 2017. It is a joint project with FEMA, Harris County Flood Control, and the City of Houston. FEMA is providing 75 percent of funding for the project, and the City and Harris County Flood Control will divide the remaining 25 percent.
The Inwood project will protect over 4,400 structures in the White Oak Bayou and Vogel Creek watersheds. The City and Harris County aim to build 12 floodwater detention basins to hold about 1,200 acre-feet of water, roughly 592 Olympic swimming pools, or enough water to fill the Astrodome.
The City and the HCFD acquired the former golf course in 2011 as a potential flood mitigation facility. The project would take seven or eight years without recent federal funding.
The project construction is scheduled to be completed in 2025 and is expected to cost over $80 million.
The Houston Parks Board also is developing an amenities package to enhance the project with funding from private donations.
“This is a great example of multiple public and private partnerships to benefit the community,” said Mayor Sylvester Turner. “It will serve a dual purpose with detention while providing a major enhancement for people living there. I’m excited to see this happen today, and we hope to plan a groundbreaking within the next 30 days.”