Project Brays is a $480 million improvement project that’s been under construction since 2000. The majority of work to reduce the risk of flooding in communities along the Brays Bayou watershed has been finished.
Residents in Meyerland and Westbury credit the improvements that including widening the channel and bridge modifications, for sparing their homes from flooding during Tropical Storm Beta.
“We know what our bayous do. We know the levels so we prepare ourselves,” said Jennifer Edmondson, a lifelong Westbury resident.
Even with all the rain that fell during Beta, Edmondson said all the homes in neighborhoods that make up her community stayed dry.
“Brays was ready. It was ready for the storm and it did good,” she said.
Before Harvey, the majority of the work involved with Project Brays had been finished.
Since then, over five miles of channel have been widened, including the stretch that runs right through Meyerland and Westbury. The Meyerland area saw the second highest amount with 13.5 inches of rain.
While Project Brays protected that area from flooding during Beta, every major rain event in Houston is different.
So, if you’re comparing Beta to Harvey or any other major rain event, Gary Zika, Project Manager with the Harris County Flood Control District, said don’t.
“We can’t stop all the flooding. If it dumps three or four inches an hour, there is going to be street flooding. There’s going to be structural flooding. What we try to do is reduce the risk of flooding,” Zika said.
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo said while we are in a much better position than we were three years ago, we have to be realistic.
“Really we need to be prepared for another Harvey. That’s the big thinking going forward , that’s going to take a much larger investment," Hidalgo said.
If you’d like to check on the progress that’s being made on other county flood control projects, visit this click.