Study of Giant Underground Drainage Tunnels To Begin Once County Cashes Federal Check

STUDY OF GIANT UNDERGROUND DRAINAGE TUNNELS TO BEGIN ONCE COUNTY CASHES FEDERAL CHECK Remember that massive network of underground tunnels that the county’s flood control experts said they were looking into last year as a way to drain floodwaters from at least 7 different bayous before discharging it into the Ship Channel? This week, the Harris County Flood Control District received a $320,000 federal grant that — along with $80,000 of local funds — will pay for a 4-month study to determine whether the tunnels are worth building. Of particular interest: whether Harris County’s soft soils and high groundwater table could realistically house the deep-underground cylinders, which would measure 20 ft. or more in diameter, according to the county. “If the use of tunnels is found to be feasible, future efforts could examine potential tunnel routes, complete hydraulic analyses to determine the required tunnel diameters, and determine proposed inlet and outlet shaft locations.” The 2018 flood bond program that county voters approved last August includes $20 million to pay for that work, as well as other early-stage engineering efforts for the tunnel network. [Harris County Flood Control District; previously on Swamplot] Photo of Harvey flooding near UHD: Kelsie H. Dos Santos

8 Comment

  • What happened to the plan to divert White Oak Bayou above the current confluence with Buffalo Bayou, to a more direct eastern route of White Oak to join Buffalo Bayou farther northeast. and away from the downtown confluence. It also seems like there are one or two very old buildings at Fannin and San Jacinto, that restrict the flow of the combined bayous. If those buildings were removed it would take pressure off of the bottle neck created by the close proximity of those buildings. I don’t like losing old architecture but they do more harm than good in floods.

  • Pipe flood waters into the ship channel ??? Brilliant palan, as nothing else will be draining into upper Galveston Bay during a rain event.

  • You know, I’m all for big thinking but there comes a point when an idea is just plain nuts.

  • BobR,

    The WoB diversion is still on the table.

  • “…. a 4-month study to determine whether the tunnels are worth building.” I can save them both time and money. It won’t. Tunnels can be built and can move water, but HUGE pumps will be needed to push the water out into the bay and that doesn’t work well when it is at flood levels or at high tide. Nothing but a total waste of out tax dollars ….. I wonder who is profiting as they need to be investigated

  • And dont they want to put a big “gate” in the Galveston bay, to keep water out? Not a scientist here, but it will prob keep water in too :/

  • This makes sense in cities built on density, but is pie in the sky for Houston.
    It would also be obvious to say that focusing on density is the best and smartest way to reduce flooding. There’s not exactly a shortage of land or parts of town needing to be redeveloped in Houston.

  • Joel-Change “Redeveloped” to “User Reassignment” and you’ll stay out of trouble. Just lookin’ out for ya Bro.