Update on the Plan to Bulldoze the Riparian Zone, Dredge, and Channelize Wild Buffalo Bayou

Yellow-crowned Night Heron by Frank X. Tolbert 2.

Yellow-crowned Night Heron by Frank X. Tolbert 2.

Feb. 8, 2015

The Army Corps of Engineers reports that it is continuing to supply the Harris County Flood Control District with their comments on the Flood Control District’s responses to the public comments on the district’s application for a federal permit.

Dwayne Johnson, regulatory project manager for the Galveston District office of the Corps, wrote in an email to Save Buffalo Bayou on Jan. 20, 2015, that the Corps expects to have a response and a possible new Public Notice about the permit application within thirty to sixty days. The new Public Notice would request new public comments only on the changes to the project plans made since the original Public Notice last April, said Johnson.

A federal Clean Water Act permit is required for the project because it will dredge and fill navigable waters of the United States. The Corps is responsible for that. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality must certify that the Corps’ permit meets Texas Surface Water Quality Standards. The Environmental Protection Agency also has the authority under the Clean Water Act to overrule a federal permit, although the EPA has rarely done that.

In addition, the Houston City Council, as the governing body for Memorial Park, must give public notice, hold a hearing, and vote on whether the project is a proper use or taking of public parkland under Ch. 26 of the state Parks and Wildlife Code.

Memorial Park has some protection from the deeds establishing the park. The Hogg Family, which sold the parkland to the city at cost in the early 1920s, set up the multiple deeds so that ownership of the park reverts to their heirs if the land is used for other than park purposes. These reversionary rights have been left to the Daughters of the Republic of Texas and the Hogg Foundation for Mental Health.

Plus, the City of Houston Floodplain Management Office must issue a development permit for the project because it involves construction activity within a city floodplain.

Find out what you can do.

2 thoughts on “Update on the Plan to Bulldoze the Riparian Zone, Dredge, and Channelize Wild Buffalo Bayou”

  1. Rebecca Allen says:

    Walked the trails along the bayou this past weekend and just can’t understand why the BPA wants to fix something that works. This plan does not pass the smell test

  2. Jonahs Sister says:

    Have people forgotten the POWER OF PRAYER??? (John 14:14; 16:23)

    Ask for the doors to be opened for… and pray that doors be closed against…

    Where there are three (3) or more gathered in His name… is all it takes.

    Gather together the Prayer Warriors in your Church and move those “mountains of opposition”. If God is with you, who can be against you! PRAYER WORKS MIRACLES. Ask. Pray. Stand still and watch the LORD move on your prayer requests.

    Jonah Sister

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