Engineering Excellence Gold Award
American Council of Engineering Companies of Texas
The Regional Groundwater Update Project won a Gold Medal in the Studies, Research and Consulting Engineering Services category in the 2014 Engineering Excellence Awards from the American Council of Engineering Companies of Texas.
The groundwater update provides the scientific basis for regulations to curb land subsidence, which has caused significant infrastructure damage and increased flooding in the Houston area. This project will guide the region's water agencies as they shift from groundwater to surface water supplies, an effort that is expected to involve $2 billion to $3 billion in water projects over the next 10 years.
Using advanced GIS and database programming techniques, our team projected population growth and water demand at an unprecedented degree of spatial resolution for an area so populous. Our team also developed a groundwater and land subsidence model that is the first of its kind in the world and is expected to become a standard tool. Previously, subsidence had been predicted at 26 points in the Houston region; our team's model can predict it at 7,000 points.
This project was completed under budget and six months ahead of schedule.