Army Corps of Engineers monitors Addicks and Barker dams and reservoirs

Published May 27, 2015

HOUSTON (May 27, 2015) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Galveston District, is closely monitoring the Addicks and Barker dams and reservoirs in West Houston as part of stage one of an extended watch that calls for an increased surveillance of the flood risk management structures.

“The Addicks and Barker dams and reservoirs are performing as intended, which is to reduce the flood levels along Buffalo Bayou and protect the City of Houston,” said Col. Richard P. Pannell, USACE Galveston District commander. “Public safety is our number one priority as we work with our partners –the City of Houston, Fort Bend County, Harris County, and the Texas Department of Public Safety – to monitor the dams and reservoirs."

The Corps remains in contact with the Texas Department of Transportation and Harris County Flood Control District to provide status updates as the impoundment of rainwater in the Addicks Reservoir could result in flood water impacting State Highway 6 between Clay Road and Interstate 10, which is located inside of the reservoir.

The USACE Galveston District staff will continue to closely monitor conditions and provide updates as the situation changes.

Constructed in the 1940s, both reservoirs are normally kept dry to preserve their overall capacity to impound storm water and reduce flood levels in Buffalo Bayou. When a rain event occurs, the gates are closed on the Addicks and Barker dams to reduce flooding below the reservoirs. When the downstream runoff has receded to non-damaging stages, reservoir operations resume, the gates are opened, and water is released.

The USACE Galveston District was established in 1880 as the first engineer district in Texas to oversee river and harbor improvements. Its main missions include navigation, ecosystem restoration, emergency management, flood risk management and regulatory oversight.

To learn more about the Addicks and Barker Dam Safety Program, visit For more news and information, visit Find us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter,

Release no. 15-030