April 3, 2023 -- Today, Mayor Sylvester Turner joined representatives of Harris County, Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the Houston Parks Board for the official groundbreaking of the Inwood Forest Stormwater Detention Basin project.
In 2011, the City of Houston purchased the Inwood Forest golf course for the purpose of converting the facility into regional detention. Houston Public Works (HPW) subsequently converted one golf hole into a detention basin prior to Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) assuming the lead to design and construct detention throughout the remaining course. Final design was near completion when Hurricane Harvey impacted our community.
"Houston can no longer afford to wait. In the past seven years, the City has experienced seven federally declared disasters, and as we are all aware, storms are coming with more frequency and more intensity," said Mayor Turner. "The Inwood project will provide flood damage reduction to over 4,400 structures in the White Oak Bayou and Vogel Creek watersheds."
Post Hurricane Harvey, FEMA awarded hazard mitigation funds (HMGP) to the state to address flood mitigation opportunities for communities affected by the hurricane. Research has verified that every dollar ($1) invested in hazard mitigation saves six dollars ($6) in recovery expenses due to future flood damage reduction. TDEM awarded four HMGP projects to the City of Houston; Inwood Forest Stormwater Detention, North Canal Diversion Channel, Lake Houston Dam Gate Structure and TIRZ 17 Regional Detention. Inwood Forest is the first of these projects to reach construction phase.
An estimated $80 million in proceeds from the federal government combined with local funds from the city and county, will enable complete conversion of the golf course into regional detention. Upon completion hundreds of residential and commercial structures will realize future flood damage reduction.
HCFCD has assumed the role of project management on behalf of the city. Harris County, during a March 14th Commissioners Court meeting, approved the award of the construction contract to Allgood Construction Company, Inc. in the amount of $70,675,829. The project is scheduled to be completed in two-and-a-half years.
To improve the quality of life for the surrounding neighborhoods, Mayor Turner asked the Houston Parks Board to develop an amenities package to be incorporated into the regional detention project. The Houston Parks Board plan, hopes to include miles of trails, pockets parks, pedestrian bridges, disc golf and significant landscaping plantings, will be funded through private and other donations. Additionally, area has been set aside for development of a First Tee facility. Collectively, this is another example of a successful public/private project for our community. Once completed, the park assets will be maintained by the Houston Parks and Recreation Department.
Harris County Flood Control District
The Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) provides flood damage reduction projects that work with the appropriate regard for community and natural values. With more than 1,500 bayous and creeks totaling approximately 2,500 miles in length, the HCFCD accomplishes its mission by devising flood damage reduction plans, implementing the plans, and maintaining the infrastructure. For more information about HCFCD, visit HCFCD.org or follow us @HCFCD on Facebook and Twitter for all the latest #HCFCDnews.
Houston Parks Board
Houston Parks Board creates, improves, protects, and advocates for parks for everyone. Since 1976, the 501(c) nonprofit organization has utilized public-private partnerships and its extensive philanthropic, government and community relationships to provide equitable access to quality parks and green space to the Greater Houston region. In addition to leading the transformation Bayou Greenways initiative, Houston Parks Board cares for more than 2,800 acres of green space.
Houston Parks and Recreation Department
The Houston Parks and Recreation Department (HPARD) stewards and manages 381 parks and over 39,501 acres of parkland and greenspace for the City of Houston and develops and implements recreational programming for citizens of all ages and abilities. For more information on the HPARD, call 832.395.7022 or visit www. Houstonparks.org.