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Lakes on Eldridge

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Harris County MUD 341 Fact Sheet

Harris County MUD 341 Fact Sheet
Harris County Mud 341 Fact Sheet
Lakes on Eldridge April 18, 2016 Rain Event
In the late evening of April 17th and the early morning of April 18th, a significant rain event fell on the greater Houston area.  In the area of Mud 341, approximately 14 inches of rain fell between 2pm Sunday April 17th and 2 pm Monday, April 18th with the vast majority of this total falling in the late night/early morning hours. 
The intensity of this rain event over the west/northwest greater Houston area was incredibly rare by historical standards.  In the immediate area of this neighborhood, this appears to have been approximately a 100 year flood rain event (meaning a 1% chance for this event to occur in any given year).  For some areas immediately west and north of the subdivision, it appears to have been a 200 or 500 year rain event (meaning a 0.2-0.5% change to occur in any given year). 
During and immediately after the rain event, several areas of Lakes on Eldridge reported street flooding which encroached into lots in some areas (thankfully, it appears no homes were flooded.)  Following City of Houston and Harris County criteria, the Lakes on Eldridge subdivision was designed to convey storm events of 3 years and smaller in the inlets and pipes with no ponding at the inlets.  For storm events up to the 25 year event, temporary ponding at the inlets is to be expected before all rainwater is drained through the underground pipes.  For rain events greater than the 25-year event, the excess flows that exceed the capacity of the storm sewer pipes are conveyed in the streets, with the streets serving as temporary channels to convey the rainwater to the detention ponds and ultimately to Addicks Reservoir.  This is what occurred during this event.  As all house slabs were constructed a minimum of 18” above the 100 year flood elevation, all houses appear to have been spared from flooding during this event. 
The street ponding described above appears to have subsided within 24 hours after the conclusion of the rain event.  This subdivision, along with other areas to the west and northwest that were hit hard during this event, drains into Addicks Reservoir.  In the days after the event, the elevation of Addicks Reservoir continued to rise, as flows from upstream areas continued to fill the reservoir while limiting release of flow downstream to all areas along Buffalo Bayou to drain out as quickly as possible, before eventually increasing the rate of release of water from the reservoir, which is still in progress.  For this reason, the water levels in Addicks Reservoir peaked several days after the actual rain event.  The level peaked on Saturday, April 23rd at approximately 103 ft.  For historical perspective, the previous high water elevation in Addicks Reservoir was approx. 97 feet.
For comparison, the lowest elevation of any street in Lakes on Eldridge is approximately 106 ft., with the lowest elevation of any house slab at approximately 108 ft.  So, even in this historically extreme storm, there were several feet of elevation preventing the waters of Addicks Reservoir from backing up to threaten flooding of any homes.

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