While we fix our flood infrastructure, let’s also improve mental health care and strengthen communities
URBAN EDGE : September 12, 2022
Natural disasters are increasingly common each year, affecting infrastructure and contributing to economic, social, health, and psychological hardships. When Hurricane Harvey hit Houston in 2017, it quickly amassed $125 billion in damages, displacing over a million people and their homes. Along with the economic toll of a disaster event, mental health concerns carry a cost that is difficult to measure.
In ‘More City than Water,’ Houston tells its Hurricane Harvey story. Will we listen?
URBAN EDGE : August 25, 2022
Flood survival stories are a Houston shibboleth, a test of membership. Make it through a devastating downpour, and you are one of us. And everyone who lived in the Houston area in August 2017 has a Hurricane Harvey story. For some, it was another entry in a collection of flood stories, depending on how long they lived here and where; for others, it was their first, a rude awakening to very real vulnerabilities.
If it hopes to overcome future Harveys, Houston needs to double down on resilience and planning
URBAN EDGE : August 16, 2022
A new book serves as a guide for how cities can best learn from one another to design systems and build ways to endure the worst climate shocks to come. This includes Houston’s experience—both for what to expect from a changing climate and how to respond. Its authors say Houston has done several things right, but they also worry that future disasters could outpace these efforts.
With new incentives, Harris County hopes to gain buy-in for buyouts
URBAN EDGE : May 25, 2022
Climate change is propelling more extreme weather events, including more precipitation and flooding, which means the need for more strategies such as buyouts has never been more urgent. As a concept, buyouts are fairly straightforward: the government buys up properties to remove them out of harm’s way, reducing the risk of loss of life, the need for future flood repairs, insurance payouts and other costs.
Resilience and Recovery Tracker
INITIATIVE : April 1, 2022
The Houston area’s Resilience and Recovery Tracker was developed by Rice University’s Kinder Institute for Urban Research with support from Chevron. It provides information on disaster recovery efforts from natural and man-made hazards, such as floods, climate disasters, public health crises, and chemical spills.
A wider view: Where Houston stands as it recovers from Harvey and builds its resilience
URBAN EDGE : March 15, 2022
What do trees, bike lanes, and billions in federal disaster aid have in common? They are some of the building blocks of Houston’s future—one that is safer, more equitable and better positioned to withstand future disasters. They’re also among the inventory of measures included in the Kinder Institute’s new Resilience and Recovery Tracker.