We agree Dickinson should apply for a grant to study the city’s watershed with the goal to reduce the effects of flooding from Dickinson Bayou.

In August, Hurricane Harvey flooded thousands of homes in the city, leaving residents still dealing with the effects of the storm.

City officials Tuesday unanimously approved the application for the grant, which, if awarded, will fund a study of drainage trouble spots throughout the watershed, officials said. The information from the study could help the city prepare for future floods, officials said.

If awarded, the city will pay $150,000 in matching costs, officials said.

While we agree the study should be made, we also agree with those who say that, too often, the solution is not in the findings of the study, but in the action taken after the study.

Collecting data is important, but the city also should consider spending money to get things done, Councilman Walter Wilson said in a Wednesday Daily News story.

“Every time we turn around, there’s another study,” he said. “I don’t understand what all these studies are going to do.”

One resident’s suggestion was to begin dredging Dickinson Bayou.

In 1987, the Army Corps of Engineers studied Dickinson Bayou. At the time, the benefits of improving water flow in the bayou did not outweigh the costs.

We’ve heard that cost-benefit argument before as a reason not to complete a proposed project.

A decade ago, Hurricane Ike devastated much of the same area as Hurricane Harvey did. In the aftermath, there have been discussions and studies about the feasibility of constructing a coastal spine barrier.

Recently, in federal funding after Harvey, there is $1.9 million to continue studying the feasibility the coastal spine. That $6 billion to $10 billion project — also called the “Ike Dike” — proposes barriers to protect the area from storm surge coming into Galveston Bay.

A draft report and an environmental impact statement on the Ike Dike proposal are expected by late September, followed by public meetings. A final report isn’t expected until April 2021, which is 13 years after the hurricane.

Thirteen years after Hurricane Ike and the studies are still ongoing — this seems like too long of a time span to us.

Studies are needed before action is taken. But action, eventually, must be taken to keep the Texas Gulf Coast safer for its residents.

• Dave Mathews

Dave Mathews: 409-683-5258; dave.mathews@galvnews.com

Managing Editor — Design

(4) comments

Carol Dean

You can "study an issue to death" and never come up with a viable solution! It is my opinion that $150,000 would go a long way in starting at the root and cleaning out our drainage ditches. To solve the Bayou issue, it is going to take a collaboration of entities and there is no need for a study to figure that one out!

Rusty Schroeder

Seems these GCDN staff editorials are straight from reader comments on previous articles about the subjects, have noticed it several times lately on different issues.

George Croix

"...will fund a study of drainage trouble spots throughout the watershed, officials said."

You don't designate something as a 'trouble spot' unless it's already in trouble.
And, if so, why does it need to be studied. Put it back in original designed condition...

Jose' Boix

Reading more about Dickinson Bayou, it is just interesting to see what happened past funds (2008) seemingly to "fix" the same problem - plus additional bond funds in 2017:
The County has three propositions on the November 4, 2008 ballot. They are:
Proposition 1 = $75 Million for Road Improvements
Proposition 2 = $15 Million for Drainage Improvements
Proposition 3 = $45 Million for Facilities Improvements and New Construction

Proposition 2 = This proposition would focus on de-snagging and otherwise alleviating flooding along Dickinson Bayou and the Dickinson Bayou Watershed. Another $10 million would be spent to battle longtime flooding problems along Clear Creek including construction of a detention area. It was understood that with partnerships from the Harris County and Brazoria County flood control districts the project could reduce flooding by as much as 2.5 feet along Clear Creek.

So fast forward to 2017, and we – the voters - approved an $80M Bond for a variety of additional projects, and accordingly, we don’t really know what happened with the $135M approved 2008.

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