Facing drainage and trash pickup issues, residents of the Bayridge subdivision say the city has neglected them as they work to rebuild their homes six months after Hurricane Harvey made landfall.
The Bayridge neighborhood steeped in floodwater for four days after the downpour of Hurricane Harvey, which struck in late August. Bayridge drains into Gum Bayou, which drains into Dickinson Bayou.
About 7,700 homes throughout League City were damaged by Harvey flooding. Of those 7,700 homes, 1,450 had major damage with at least 18 inches of water inside.
Bayridge resident Lori Herrera owns one of the 7,700 homes damaged by flooding. As she finishes repairs, she claims the city is ignoring concerns shared by many of her neighbors, she said.
“We definitely do have some sort of problems and something needs to be fixed,” Herrera said. “We are just like this little forgotten armpit in League City. That’s how we feel.”
If the neighborhood isn’t experiencing problems with drainage, there are issues with trash collection, Herrera said.
But the city has received no complaints about trash pickup, City Manager John Baumgartner said. Meanwhile, the city has hired Houston-based LJA Engineering Inc. to conduct a report of how stormwater in Bayridge drains, Baumgartner said.
“I am not aware of any waste not getting picked up,” he said. “We’ve had our code enforcement folks in that neighborhood. If it’s household trash and waste they’ve missed, I would certainly have anyone in Bayridge call us.”
Construction debris and anything related to home repair will not be picked up by Republic Waste Services, Baumgartner said.
“They need to separate out the lawn waste from the dry wall,” he said. “Republic will pick up bag material. Most of those are addressed by a case-by-case basis. But Republic won’t take the sheet rock or the pieces of boards and tiles.”
Residents are required to remove any construction material themselves if it hasn’t already been cleared away by a contractor, Baumgartner said.
There are bigger problems in the neighborhood, however, Bayridge resident Karen Prescott said.
“People in Bayridge are more concerned with our neighborhood flooding than garbage pickup,” she said.
The city has not shown initiative since Harvey and residents’ concerns are not being taken seriously, Prescott said.
“We’ve hired a consultant to evaluate what happened during Harvey, so there’s an inventory effort,” Baumgartner said. “Our consultant is getting close to a report completed. We are creating an inventory of options to present to the council.”
The city is looking into possible drainage solutions and is planning an open forum March 22 at the League City Civic Center, Baumgartner said.
Bayridge has not been forgotten and the city will recommend several possible solutions to the drainage problem at the open meeting next month, Assistant City Manager Bo Bass said.
“I am sorry that they do feel ignored,” he said. “We are hoping that the LJA study is well-rounded, but another effort of enhancement will be direct contact with residents. We’ve got the engineers, the math, the observations we’ve made, but we want to hear their stories. They are the critical third part of this puzzle.”