Hurricane Ike made landfall on September 13, 2008, bringing 10 to 15 foot storm surges affecting major parts of Galveston Island, Galveston Bay, the Bolivar Peninsula, Houston, and Chambers County. The storm caused $29 Billion in damage to homes, commercial businesses, schools, coastlines, and communities.
Hurricane Ike tops the charts as one of the costliest storms ever to hit the United States. Damage of this magnitude takes years to assess, process, clean up, rebuild, and recover from. In the years following the storm, the Texas Department of Rural Affairs (TDRA) was entrusted by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to administer the Disaster Recovery Program. In 2012, the TDRA transferred this task to the Texas General Land Office (TGLO). The Disaster Recovery Program provided $3.1 Billion to Texas communities for housing and infrastructure projects to mitigate storm damages.
The eye of Hurricane Ike passed directly over Chambers County causing significant devastation. Chambers County was granted approximately $44.5 Million from TGLO for infrastructure projects. These funds were used to complete 36 projects, the largest being the construction of the Lake Anahuac East Levee.
LJA Engineering was contracted by TGLO to provide engineering and construction management services for most of the Chambers County projects, including the levee. LJA evaluated multiple methods of repairing the extensive damage to prevent future erosion. The resulting $7.5 Million, 5.2-mile long levee features a reinforced front slope to reduce future erosion caused by storm surge and wave action and was built to a top elevation of 8.5 feet mean sea level with a top width of 20 feet.
Property owners who have historically lost two to three feet of land per year from storms and resulting erosion will reap enormous benefits from the new levee. The final design protects the 96 homes located along the project from all but two storms that have occurred over the last 120 years. Nearly six years of preparation and construction went into the Chambers County projects in order to protect the community from future storms. We are proud of this project and the expertise we applied to mitigate future damage. LJA worked hard to help the community rebuild their lands and create the opportunity for growth. We cannot control the weather, but we can help alleviate some of the impacts that weather causes.
”There is a wonderful sense of accomplishment that comes from completing a job that directly impacts the lives of hundreds of people.” – Allen Sims, PE, VP
Contact Allen Sims, PE, Vice President for more information.