The Detention Battle of Bunker Hill: Flooding Above the New Katy Freeway

Some residents of Long Point Woods are blaming the new and well-paved 48-acre Village Plaza at Bunker Hill shopping center along the north feeder road of the expanded Katy Freeway for the late-April flooding that damaged many homes between Bunker Hill Rd. and Blalock, south of Westview. Abc13’s Miya Shay reports, opting not to mention the neighborhood or the development by name:

[Resident Barbara] Hunt says homeowners grew worried when a large development along I-10 and Bunker Hill [was] allowed to be built without additional retention, and when heavy rain fell, it ran off the parking lots and into their homes. . . .

But Mayor White says the developers didn’t get special treatment because the property was already covered in asphalt before the developers bought the land and began building.

“If something is built, and somebody buys it from somebody where it already has some paved over and is already developed, we don’t have new detention requirements,” said Mayor White.


Alan Hassenflu of Fidelis Realty Partners began assembling the shopping center site from 6 separate industrial parcels in 2003, according to the Houston Business Journal. Those parcels included various manufacturing sites and a rock quarry.

The shopping center now includes an H-E-B Market and an Academy Sporting Goods store. Briar Branch Creek runs parallel to I-10 between the shopping center and the residential neighborhoods to the north.

Photo of flooded home in Long Point Woods: Miya Shay

10 Comment

  • People always want to blame new constrcution for flooding. The flood that happened on the West end of Houston was a once in 20+ years event. I live near Gessner and Memorial and we haven’t seen water that high in my neighborhood for at least 20 years. There were fish from Buffalo Bayou swimming about 30 feet from my front door. There was no new construction around us to blame it on.


  • Kind of like how all the new road construction in the Heights (Cortlandt, Arlington, etc) to “improve” the drainage caused every street in the neighborhood to flood….. except those with the old-style ditches.

  • I didn’t realize people built rock quarries on top of asphalt. I guess you learn something new each day.

  • water has to go somewhere, and with all that impervious parking, water backs-up into Spring Valley or down into the underpass at the BW8.
    and the excuse of previous sites being combined to make one new site not needing detention, there is an acreage requirement for retainage and/or detention.

  • Get used to it. The city doesn’t care, it’s all about developers and their new developments.

  • ‘scuse me, but the Texas Stone Co. was NOT on asphault. (It wasn’t strictly a quarry, but a rock yard, muddy Houston has no real quarries – is the nearest Damon Mound?) It was on dirt; I know this because after the company left the site I prospected over there for leftover rocks for a landscaping project – don’t tell.

    And the Daniel valve facility was only partially covered.

    It wasn’t a paradise the developers paved, but yes, indeedy, they did the paving. Why, oh why, can’t we invent a semipermiable paving for Houston? I may work on that one when I retire.

  • It wasn’t a paradise the developers paved, but yes, indeedy, they did the paving.

    You mean the mayor “misrepresented” this?

  • I have no idea where people get the idea that it was already paved but as someone who lives on Westview and who has lived in the area mentioned (or near it) for 15 years… let me tell you what was paved over.
    -Ditches on either side of Bunker Hill between Longpoint and Katy freeway.
    -Old Katy road, which had grass on both sides and a ditch.
    -A little shop (maybe a car dealership I dont remember) that was on an island between both sides of bunker hill,dirt and green was taken from there
    – the already mentioned quarry which was NOT all pavement. I went there often and it was very much dirt. Cars would get stuck there when it rained.
    -The daniel area that was also not all paved where those new apartments are (where there is standing water when it DOESNT rain due to poor drainage).

    This is not a flooding that hasnt happened in 20 years, the houses here are much older than 20 years… these houses are 50+ years old and it has NEVER happened.

  • Alma is spot on. I used to work at Daniel Industries and we used to have picnics where the wall-to-wall apartments are now. There used to be a creek with trees on either side with all kinds of wildlife – kind of an oasis. So, yes, Mayor White misspoke. This website talks about it more: