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Texas - Harris County - Sims Bayou

Case Number: 
Affected Counties: 
Fort Bend County, TX
Harris County, TX
Preliminary map: 
Projected Effective: 
Project Status: 

View Preliminary Data:
Fort Bend County, TX Harris County, TX

Project Information:  The Sims Bayou Federal Flood Damage Reduction Project completed construction in 2015.  The Harris County Flood Control District (HCFCD) prepared an updated engineering analysis to provide FEMA updated floodplain extents for the update of the affected Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) along the Sims Bayou project.  The FIRM update reflects the construction of the various mitigation efforts constructed.   

FEMA released preliminary flood hazard information for affected Fort Bend and Harris County, TX panels on January 30, 2017.

About the Federal Flood Damage Reduction Project: The Sims Bayou Federal Flood Damage Reduction Project, a partnership of the US Army Corp of Engineers and the Harris County Flood Control District, began constuction in 1990 and was completed in 2015. The project, which begins at the Houston Ship Channel and reaches along the bayou alignment to Croquet Lane, included bayou enlargements, environmental enhancements, construction of three stormwater detention basins and the replacement/modification of 22 bridge crossings over the bayou.  The project's 20 roadway bridges and two pedestrian bridges were designed to minimize obstruction to the flow of stormwater in the bayou. The new bridges have as small a "footprint" as possible, with most bridge supports located out of the normal flood flow area of the bayou. The result is a more efficient rate of flow for high volumes of stormwater, meaning that more stormwater can drain through the bayou reducing the potential for out-of-bank flooding.

Structural flooding has occurred numerous times along Sims Bayou and its tributaries. The majority of the structures that are flood prone were built prior to the existence of detailed floodplain maps and prior to floodplain management regulations. Once the FIRMs are officially updated, approximately 35,000 houses and 2,000 commercial structures will be removed from the 1% annual chance floodplain throughout the Sims Bayou watershed, showing the flood risk reduction implemented by this extensive mitigation project.

About the Watershed: The Sims Bayou watershed is located in southern Harris County, with most of the watershed falling within the limits of the City of Houston. However, the upper reach of the watershed drains the City of Missouri City and the lower reach of the watershed drains the cities of South Houston and Pasadena. The Sims Bayou watershed covers about 94 square miles and includes two primary streams: Sims Bayou and Berry Bayou. There are about 121 miles of open streams within the watershed, including the primary streams and tributary channels.

Dates: Data Received from HCFCD (September /2016), Preliminary Issuance (January 30, 2017), Lender/Agent Stakeholder Workshop (May 15-16, 2017), Public Open House Meetings (May 15-16, 2017), CCO Meeting (July 2017), Appeals Period – PENDING

Documents and Data: Agent/Lender Workshop Presentation, Preliminary FIS, Preliminary FIRM (list from MSC)

Additional Resources: HCFCD – Flood Eduction Mapping Tool (Interactive Map); HCFCD – Sims Bayou Watershed; HCFCD – Sims Bayou Federal Flood Risk Reduction Project; HCFCD – Berry Bayou Tributaries & Stormwater Detention; What is Risk MAP?; FAQs - Flood Hazard Mapping