Selective Clearing

Selective Clearing

Project description

Harris County Flood Control District conducts limited selective clearing operations within the Addicks Reservoir as part of a five-year agreement with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The previous five-year agreement expired at the end of December 2020. The new five-year agreement was renewed on March 30, 2021. For updates on the new agreement, which includes an expanded selective clearing operation along both South Mayde Creek and Langham Creek, visit the C-52 project webpage.

The primary focus of this operation is to ensure that natural channels included in the agreement function at peak capacity to convey stormwater from surrounding neighborhoods into the reservoir. This work is in addition to the Flood Control District’s cyclical mowing and maintenance program outside the reservoir boundaries. Selective clearing at Addicks Reservoir involves identifying and removing downed trees or trees at imminent risk of failure. The work is performed by hand, using chainsaws, machetes, and ropes. Contractors travel the channel on foot, through environmentally sensitive areas, with few if any roads. A secondary focus of this operation is to leave as much of the native understory as possible, while clearing non-native species.

Selective clearing crews initially completed work in 2016 along Langham Creek, formally identified as HCFCD Unit U100-00-00, from Addicks-Satsuma Road to Clay Road. Crews also targeted South Mayde Creek, formally identified as HCFCD Unit U101-00-00, from Greenhouse Road downstream to tributary U101-15-00, which feeds into South Mayde Creek, about 1.5 miles downstream of Barker Cypress. The map below shows the location of both creeks within Addicks Reservoir. These were the only channels included in the 2016 selective clearing agreement with the Corps, but the work to maintain these channels is completed on an ongoing basis.

Downed trees shown before HCFCD contract crews began selective clearing work on Langham Creek (U100-00-00), a 2.12-mile stretch of channel.

Flood Control District contract crews work to removed downed trees from Langham Creek (U100-00-00).

South Mayde Creek (U101-00-00) before selective clearing work completed.

South Mayde Creek (U101-00-00) after selective clearing work completed.

South Mayde Creek (U101-00-00) blockage caused by a downed tree before clearing.

South Mayde Creek (U101-00-00) after downed tree blockage cleared.

Addicks Reservoir: Limited Selective Clearing Project Sites