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Halls Ahead Flood Damage Reduction Study, Harris County Flood Control District (Brown & Gay Engineers)

It was the Harris County Flood Control's goal to design a master vision plan for flood damage reduction in the Halls Bayou watershed through a multi-disciplinary approach and, most importantly, engender community support for the master vision plan. Crouch Communications fulfilled the community engagement role on a multi-disciplinary study team comprised of experts in flood damage reduction, fluvial geomorphology, environmental science, and urban design.

In order to engage the diverse watershed community from the outset of the study, Crouch Communications organized and facilitated a public open house meeting. The purpose of this first meeting was to raise awareness about the project by informing the public of project objectives and more importantly to gather community feedback about their experiences and values regarding flood damage reduction. Crouch Communications created and presented an introductory video to provide the public with a concise and consistent overview of the study.

Following the large-scale public meeting, Crouch Communications continued to seek additional stakeholder input by holding a series of 15 smaller community meetings. We sought out and contacted local community groups such as civic clubs and homeowners associations and established the Halls Ahead Study Team as a proactive and community-oriented entity. Crouch Communications created several collateral materials to support the many community meetings, which ensured that entire watershed population was receiving consistent information regarding the study.

Further involving the community and engendering support for the study, Crouch Communications assisted the Study Team by engaging an advisory committee comprised of a diverse panel of individuals with interests in flood damage reduction, parks and recreation, community stability, regional planning, economic development and environmental stewardship. Through creative activities, collateral materials, and true hands-on collaboration with the advisory committee, Crouch Communications was able to maintain a working relationship with the group for over a year of monthly meetings. Attendance to monthly meetings was consistently high, and output from the meetings was extremely effective in terms achieving consensus among the diverse group with competing interests.

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