What Happened in the Addicks Watershed During the Tax Day Flood?
Approximately 240 billion gallons of rainwater fell over Harris
County April 17-18, resulting in major flooding in streets and homes. The Upper
Cypress Creek, Addicks and Barker watersheds received 13-17 inches of rain in a
12-hour period. Stormwater runoff made its way into the major creeks in Addicks
and Barker watersheds, causing house flooding in neighborhoods near Langham,
Bear, South Mayde, Horsepen and Mason creeks, as well as upper Buffalo
The water also caused significant rises in the Addicks and Barker
reservoirs in west Harris County; and in fact, both reservoir pools reached
record levels. As water levels rose in the reservoirs, roadways that run
through them went underwater, and neighborhoods immediately adjacent to the
Addicks Reservoir’s western and northern boundaries had rising water in
streets. Water came close to getting in neighborhood streets behind the Barker
Reservoir, but did not. When a period of dry weather was forecast for the
Houston region, the Corps started releasing stormwater at a controlled rate
into Buffalo Bayou.
What is the Flood Control District Doing in the Aftermath of the Flood?
In the aftermath of the storm event (April 16-17), we are doing the
- Inspecting flood control facilities for storm damage and debris.
- Working with residents and community groups to learn about potential
flooding problems that involve our bayou system.
- Continuing work on our robust capital program of flood risk reduction
projects, and our year-round maintenance programs.
The Flood Control District’s past projects in the Addicks Reservoir
watershed include channel improvements along Langham Creek, diversion channels
on Bear, Langham and Horsepen creeks, and a major maintenance project on
Horsepen Creek. The Flood Control District also started investigating the
current condition and capacity of all channels for which it has property rights
that flow into Addicks and Barker reservoirs. This work effort will begin with
a pilot project to survey and remove sediment from three channels and to
restore them to their design capacity, if found to be required.
For additional information on this investigation, and other
projects and studies in the Addicks Watershed, go to