Officials monitor forecast as Addicks/Barker reservoirs continue to release water to Buffalo Bayou

HOUSTON – Water covered Mill Hollow Drive at the Villages of Bear Creek Tuesday night.

It had been that way for a week.

People there fear more rain Wednesday could mean the water will again rise into their homes.

"It's going to come back up. Probably another three to four feet. It will be back up here again. But there's nothing you can do,” said resident Gill Parks.

Stormwater from the Addicks and Barker Reservoirs continues to flow into Buffalo Bayou, and people in the affected area are hoping the water keeps going down and out of their neighborhoods. 

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett says the U.S Army Corps of Engineers is closely watching how much water is coming out of the Addicks and Barker reservoirs.

Parks and his neighbors have torn out nearly everything in their homes. That included carpet, cabinets and walls.

Parks said, "I have three rooms that got flooded. I've got my garage flooded. Lost some power tools. I'm tearing out all of the carpet right now. There's nothing you can do."

On Tuesday afternoon, the National Weather Service issued a flood warning for Addicks Reservoir through Friday. The warning for Barker Reservoir was discontinued.

A truck carried Park’s neighbor’s car safely out of their flooded neighborhood and up to dry ground. The owner had been stranded in her neighborhood for a week.

The Corps is trying to lower water levels in both flood control areas. As it does, they are watching to see what impact the stormwater release has on the people above and below the dams. 
"The reservoirs are doing what the reservoirs were supposed to do when the corps of engineers are managing it under their protocol and managing it well.  Now, if I was a person living behind the dam and had water in my neighborhood, would I be happy? No! But that's the circumstance we're in," Emmett said.

The gates at the reservoirs were closed in the afternoon on Sunday, but they re-opened after rain passed through Harris County.

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett said the Army Corps of Engineers was closely watching the Addicks and Barker Reservoirs release rates that would alleviate flooding. Judge Emmett said, "The Corps is committed to emptying the reservoirs as fast as safely possible. So, that's where we are and hopefully we don't get any more heavy rains. 

The residents on Mill Hollow Drive and the other flooded neighborhoods just don’t want to see the water rise again soon. Parks added, "Oh, it's going to come back up again. There's no doubt about it."

Officials say the pool levels in the reservoirs remain near their peak due to last week's flooding. Areas in west and northwest Harris County that are upstream of the two reservoirs received 14-18 inches of rain last week.

The Corps Galveston District, which operates the dams at both of the reservoirs, originally closed the gates April 17, before the storms rolled in in order to hold water that began quickly draining into the reservoirs.


Harris County law enforcement officials are reporting water in some streets in the Bear Creek Village subdivision adjacent to Addicks Reservoir (near Clay Road). Officials are estimating approximately a week until water subsides back into the reservoir (without any additional rainfall). Those streets include:

• Mill Hollow Dr. 
• Red Willow Dr. 
• Hickory Downs Dr.
• Sandy Hill Dr.
• Thistlecroft Dr. 
• Sylvan Glen Dr.
• Hidden Springs Dr.
• Prairie Creek Dr.
• Pagehurst Dr.

No water has been reported in neighborhood streets adjacent to the Barker Reservoir.