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Subdude

Project Brays

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I just got something about this in the mail. I wasn't even aware of it before. This is a huge multi-year project to provide additional flood control capacity for Brays Bayou. There are more than 70 projects, including channel modifications to widen and deepen the bayou, four stormwater detention basins, and modifications to 30 bridges along the bayou to accomodate the channel widening.

Project Brays site

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Guest danax

Below is what's been done to the west side of Mason Park just west of 75th St. Those concrete cylinders are manholes and reveal where the old bank used to be. Instead of just widening the bayou, they've created flood shelves with a small detention pond au natural on the east side of the park, where there's a trail in progress that will connect to this side and continue along the bayou past the Forest Hill bridge in the distance and around the bend to Gus Wortham and Idlywood, the canoe launch, which will be across Lawndale in Idylwood, I believe. The bridges will be lifted and reconstructed to allow for better floodwater flow. 2mcdl61.jpg

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Interesting things unearthed.

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This one came out too dark but to the left across the bayou are the tidal basins, and the native plantings have been completed. It should be a nice jungle-like habitat in a few decades.

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Nice update,

There was a news crew on site about 6 months ago interviewing an older gentleman whom has lived nearby since the mid-50s and he provided great history on the changes over the years. I imagine the majority of this work is to aid in preventing bad flooding especially for Idylwood residents. I knew a guy on Wildwood street that had to deal with at least 3 serious flood issues. I went to his house when the last one hit and it was neck deep. They finally moved. So like I mention it isnt just for cosmetic purposes but to prevent high water and to beautify at the same time. This area deserves the attention. :)

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Where are they in the process? Is this more of a beautification project or to TRULY alleviate flooding in those areas?

HCFCD's charter is to reduce flooding in the county, so their primary goal (and the only thing they can spend funds on) is flood control. However, they have stated that where they can assist in beautification they will. After all, flood control doesn't have to be all concrete-lined storm sewers! Willow Waterhole and Mason Park are two good examples of that.

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Guest danax

Last week I finally went across the bayou to the north side of Mason Park to check out the completed wetlands/flood control project that's a part of Project Brays. It was worth the walk.

It's a series of three ponds that first collects from the storm drain emptying the nabe above it (Pineview Place), and then filters and finally releases back into the mainstream. The ponds also serve as detention ponds in the case of flooding. A larger natural detention pond is under construction across the bayou.

20 years ago, flood control probably would've meant concrete. Instead, this has turned into a giant asset for the city.

Trail from the soccer fields to the ponds.

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Description.

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Collection pond with giant water lilies

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Collection pond again.

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Filtration pond covered in red algae.

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Filtration pond again.

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Pond #3. Egret in flight.

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Pond #3.

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Litter boom. Ducks must fly over due to litter infiltration after rains.

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Danax, thanks so much for the pictures. Before I sold my place in Idylwood in 2005, I would attend the superneighborhood meetings and sat through numerous presentations by HCFCD. The renderings for the Idylwood section of Brays were impressive, and I am excited to see work begin on that section (seems like they were set to be finished by now...guess that schedule was a bit aggressive).

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For anyone interested in the Willowbend/Willowbrook S. Post Oak area Project Braes progress there will be reps giving a presentation at our next Willowbend Civic Club General Meeting on Tuesday, Sept 25 @ Salem Lutheran Church on W. Bellfort. Westbury people may be interested as well.

If it looks as good as what they did on your side of town, I'll be very happy!

Jason

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That does look nice. I live near Westbury/Post Oak. Riding down Braeswood might be a real treat after this is done. I don't like that concrete.

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I've heard from an engineer friend of mine that the Harris Gully releif project is stalled. It appears that the underground boring machine is broke down somwhere under the Dick Dowling monument and that it will take several months to fix it. Parts are coming from Germany or someplace like that.

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http://www.chron.com/disp/commnts.mpl/metr...an/5243636.html

Mayor Bill White will formally announce the first phase of the Brays Bayou Greenway today.

The Parks Board acquired about 10 acres of property adjacent to more than five acres controlled by the Harris County Flood Control District for the project, which planners hope eventually to extend about 30 miles from the Houston Ship Channel to Addicks Reservoir.

The first phase, to open in about six months, will be a mile-long stretch in Houston's East End from the Ship Channel to Mason Park.

Our bayous really can be a great asset. I hope developers use them wisely in the future and take advantage of them, in a good way, of course.

(Does the chron mind if we paste their images? I can't remember if someone said something about that in the past or not)

Ans: Yes, they do.

Edited by Subdude

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Guest danax

The Parks Board acquired about 10 acres of property adjacent to more than five acres controlled by the Harris County Flood Control District for the project, which planners hope eventually to extend about 30 miles from the Houston Ship Channel to Addicks Reservoir.

The first phase, to open in about six months, will be a mile-long stretch in Houston's East End from the Ship Channel to Mason Park.

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It sounds like the City bought the land just to the east of the UP railroad bridge (see the last pic above) and the first phase, being a mile long, would mean that section from there to the merging of the Brays and Buffalo, which is a magical spot indeed, not to mention the true womb of the Houston metro. Right now there's no access to that stretch and there's an old scrap metal plant on one of the best bends. The surrounding nabes of Pineview Place and Magnolia Park to the northwest, Mason Park to the southwest and old Harrisburg to the south (talk about an area ripe for redevelopment) will become more attractive to those seeking either historic homes to restore or one of the townhomes that are bound to sprout in time.

A talked-about MetroRail extension from the Magnolia Transit Center down Broadway to Hobby would seal the deal.

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Right now there's no access to that stretch and there's an old scrap metal plant on one of the best bends.

Actually, that's a new scrap metal plant.

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Guest danax
Actually, that's a new scrap metal plant.

I think you're talking about the French company near Broadway. I'm talking about the one on the Brays just east of Mason Park.

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I think you're talking about the French company near Broadway. I'm talking about the one on the Brays just east of Mason Park.

Oh, didn't know about that one. North or south side of the bayou?

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Guest danax
Oh, didn't know about that one. North or south side of the bayou?
North, on the little bend on the map just above E. Erath St., a spot that definitely has a higher and better use in its future.

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North, on the little bend on the map just above E. Erath St., a spot that definitely has a higher and better use in its future.

One would hope, but then I always figured that the 22 acres allocated to the new scrap metal yard would be put to far better use as a waterfront residential/entertainment complex. But apparently it is becoming extremely difficult to find any frontage on any navigable waterway, and these scrap yards can pay a high price for it.

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some pics from this afternoon taken between lawndale and 75th. bike path is complete from forest hill to lawndale....finally.

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Edited by musicman

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What is the truck in the first photo spraying? Some kind of insecticide for mosquitoes?

Edited by Jax

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Is the hike/bike trail concrete, asphalt, or is it a dirt trail?
concrete. and most would accomodate a car.
What is the truck in the first photo spraying? Some kind of insecticide for mosquitoes?
i believe it is spray on grass to prevent erosion. it usually roots fairly quickly

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concrete. and most would accomodate a car.

A car you say? Well, Project Brays is under construction all the way over in Riverside Terrace now, looks like I'll have a new short cut when South MacGregor is backed up with traffic! :rolleyes:

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A car you say? Well, Project Brays is under construction all the way over in Riverside Terrace now, looks like I'll have a new short cut when South MacGregor is backed up with traffic! :rolleyes:

did i forget to mention there was a gate?

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did i forget to mention there was a gate?

A gate? Phbbt! That's nothing. This is a place where we make our own onramps and offramps on the freeways (evidenced by little dirt paths across the esplanade leading from the freeway to the feeder road). But seriously, I've never known a hike and bike trail on a bayou to have a gate, is that to keep folks off after dark?

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A gate? Phbbt! That's nothing. This is a place where we make our own onramps and offramps on the freeways (evidenced by little dirt paths across the esplanade leading from the freeway to the feeder road). But seriously, I've never known a hike and bike trail on a bayou to have a gate, is that to keep folks off after dark?

this trail has always had em. the ones i've seen with gates tend to be wider trails that can accomodate cars. guess they don't want any joy riders but county vehicles could use them for easier access.

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