From a struggling golf course to a flood-reducing public open space
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DETAILS

LocationHouston, Texas United States
ClientClear Lake City Water Authority
Size39 acres

The Clear Lake City Water Authority (CLCWA) identified the increased needs for water detention due to the development increase in this area and bought an unprofitable golf course in 2005. SWA was engaged to design and master-plan the effort’s detention pond. The plan’s goals included flood mitigation and water quality improvements, along with the establishment of open space and recreation areas. The site has ultimately become a large nature park with ample trails, combined with maximized floodwater storage.

An engineering study (commissioned by the Texas Coastal Watershed Program, a part of Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and Texas Sea Grant) for the wetlands prefaced conversion of the golf course into a detention area, providing necessary information for the proposed wetlands to become part of a functional stormwater treatment system, so that the wetlands not only serve as attractive natural spaces and habitat, but also function optimally for water quality improvement. The new CLCWA detention facilities add 1,680 acre-feet of flood storage and 39 acres of constructed wetlands to help improve an impaired water system.  SWA collaborated on a native planting plan for the area with a local community volunteer landscape group; the resulting design provides food resources that support bird migration and nesting.

Learn more about how Exploration Green doubles as flood infrastructure in this Houston Public Media podcast

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