Texas: Islanders should stay informed about barrier plans
The Houston/Galveston Bay Area is home to five major industry clusters including aerospace, specialty chemical, health care, maritime, and recreation and tourism.
The petrochemical complex is the largest in the nation and second largest in the world, yet this region’s population and economy-sustaining industry remain vulnerable to storm surge and other natural disasters.
The Galveston Regional Chamber of Commerce recently coordinated a meeting for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Texas General Land Office to present the updated plan for the “coastal spine” and “ring barrier” to our members.
The members who attended primarily own businesses and live in the port area; this was one of many meetings scheduled to receive feedback on the plans. There was a great deal of thoughtful discussion, and the members in attendance offered several suggestions that the corps and land office agreed to consider and bring back to the table at future meetings.
If you’ve been following this project, you know that it originated as a coastal spine concept including flood gates at the ship channel and San Luis Pass, as well as a dune system to prevent major storm surge damage in the Galveston Bay region. It has since morphed to include an extremely complicated ring barrier system around a large portion of the island and flood gates in the bay at Clear Lake and Dickinson Bayou.