Houston Chronicle: With the upcoming post-Harvey bond election, many people throughout the region are scrutinizing lists of potential flood mitigation projects and wondering if the published list would protect them from the next flooding event we all know is coming.
Yet given the wide variety of challenges our region faces — such as issues related to economic development, affordable housing, public space access, equity, congestion, and threatened ecosystems — as well as limited public funding for addressing any and all of these challenges, it is crucial that we think of ways to leverage future public investment to address multiple challenges simultaneously to create a more resilient urban environment.
Additionally, as I have argued before, the flood mitigation benefits these projects have on our region should not come at the expense of the livability. A highly engineered drainage channel might help reduce localized flooding, but its benefits could be overshadowed if it further divides already disconnected neighborhoods. It is therefore imperative that local decision makers move forward with projects that not only protect us from the next storm but address many of the other challenges our region faces at the same time to further improve the livability of the Houston area. Continue reading here>>