Corps update officials on dam construction

Published Nov. 9, 2017

GALVESTON, Texas – The Army Corps of Engineers hosted local elected officials and members of the Harris County Flood Control District Tuesday for a construction update tour of the Addicks and Barker reservoirs.

Work on the $73.8 million project to replace the existing outlet structures resumed Oct. 16 after construction halted during Hurricane Harvey. 

“During the visit we toured the projects, provided a status of the ongoing improvements and talked about the importance of working to reduce flood risk,” said Galveston District Commander Col. Lars Zetterstrom.

Zetterstom said Betty Avery, Commissioner of the Harris County Emergency Service District No. 9, initiated the meeting and asked if the Corps would update her and state Representatives Dwayne Bohac and Mike Schoefield as well as Harris County Flood Control District representatives Steve Fitzgerald, chief engineer, and Dena Green, feasibility studies department manager. State Sen. Paul Bettencourt’s office was also represented during the briefing and tour.

Richard Long, natural resource management specialist and Capt. Charles Ciliske, Houston Project Office manager escorted the officials on an on-site tour. During the tour, they said the current project is replacing the outlet structures which will enhance their ability to provide flood risk reduction.

The project is planned to allow both dams to provide flood risk reduction throughout the construction process.

 “During this recent unprecedented rainfall event, the dams performed as they were designed, capturing and holding 14 percent of the 1 trillion gallons of water that fell in the Harris county drainage basin.” said Zetterstrom. “This was the largest rain event recorded in modern U.S. history and the reservoirs worked to limit the impact of this catastrophic disaster.”

Since the dams were constructed in the 1940’s, the projects have prevented more than $16 billion in flood loss.

The project to update the dams’ infrastructure was awarded to Granite Construction Company of Watersonville, California, in August 2015 and is scheduled for completion in May 2020.

The scope of the project includes constructing steel lined conduits, gates, trash racks, channel excavation, embankment construction, foundation excavation, cutoff wall construction, sub-drainage system, bridge construction, pedestrian access and temporary embankment cofferdams.

Work also includes demolition/deconstruction of existing outlet works, and preparation of as-built drawings and operation and maintenance manuals for work at Addicks and Barker reservoirs.

For more information about Addicks and Barker dams visit
: LTC Mark Williford

Release no. 17-041