GALVESTON, Texas (Sept. 1, 2015) – Often spending his summers
in the Texas hill country, building makeshift dams and playing in creeks in his younger years, Andrew Weber’s fascination with moving water hasn’t changed. As a civil engineer, specializing in geotechnical engineering, his work with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Galveston District allows him to continue studying water and the impact it has on soil properties to prevent against loss of life and property for thousands of Houstonians.
“I am working on the Addicks and Barker reservoirs and dams construction project to ensure modifications to this infrastructure meets design standards and are maintained to function as intended,” said Weber. “This multi-million dollar mega project affects thousands of homeowners, impacts the economy and protects billions of dollars in downtown Houston.”
Weber is referring to the upcoming $71.9 million construction project that will replace outlet works for both dams and implement a series of measures to decommission the existing outlet structures. The measures in decommissioning the existing outlet works included grouting the existing conduits, removing the steel gate structures, excavating and demolishing any unusable concrete structures, installing downstream filters and backfilling the excavated areas.
“The construction of the two 11-mile-long earthen dams were built in response to devastating floods that occurred in Houston in 1929 and 1935 in what was then undeveloped areas was a milestone in a longstanding partnership between the Corps and the greater Houston community,” said Weber. “They have been protecting the Houston metropolitan area for the last 70 years.”
Weber says that the Dam Safety and Levee Safety programs he operates under ensures that Corps’ owned-and-operated dams and levees do not present unacceptable risks to people, property or the environment, with the main emphasis being public safety.
“I enjoy knowing that my work has an impact on the lives of Texans,” said Weber. “My fascination with water as a child has carried into my career and instead of playing in the creeks or drainage ditches I now get to work on dams and levees to ensure these resilient structures will continue to protect.”
A native of Buda, Texas, the former Department of the Army intern earned his Bachelor of Science in Engineering from Texas A&M University at College Station in 2009 and is a licensed professional engineer. During his free time he enjoys spending time with his wife and infant son.