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Innovative Strategy Provides Immediate Flood-Protection Benefits

WASHINGTON, DC – Lockwood, Andrews & Newnam (LAN), of Houston, Texas, has earned a National Recognition Award for exemplary engineering achievement in the American Council of Engineering Companies’ (ACEC) 53rd annual Engineering Excellence Awards (EEA) for its role in the first phase of the Clear Lake City Water Authority’s Exploration Green project in Houston.

The Authority repurposed a private 178-acre golf course into a series of detention ponds and a multi-purpose nature park to improve stormwater management, reduce persistent flooding problems, and provide a scenic recreation area for the community. Named Exploration Green in honor of the community’s proximity to Johnson Space Center, the project’s first phase includes a 23.7-acre detention pond, 15.2 acres of natural habitat with wetlands, and 1.25 miles of hike-and-bike trails.

The project will protect up to 3,000 homes and provide the community with a total of five massive detention ponds, 105 acres of wetlands and native grassland habitat, a 12-mile trail system, two athletic fields, and many other amenities.

Other Houston-area firms involved with the project include SWA Group; Lecon, Inc.; Paskey, Inc.; Civil-Surv Land Surveying; and Ninyo & Moore Geotechnical and Environmental Science Consultants.

The project is eligible for additional honors as part of a record 203 entries this year representing engineering excellence from throughout the nation and the world. Judging for the awards program—known industry-wide as the “Academy Awards of the engineering industry”– took place in February and was conducted by a national 35-member panel of built environment leaders, along with experts from government, the media and academia. Award criteria focused on uniqueness and originality, technical innovation, social and economic value, and generating excitement for the engineering profession.

Recognition of all award winners including top winners—20 Honor Awards, 16 Grand Awards and the prestigious “Grand Conceptor Award” for the year’s most outstanding overall engineering achievement—will take place at the annual EEA Dinner and Gala, a black-tie event to be held Tuesday, April 28, 2020, at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, D.C.

The American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) is the business association of America’s engineering industry, representing more than 5,200 independent engineering firms and more than 600,000 professionals throughout the United States engaged in the development of America’s transportation, water and energy infrastructure, along with environmental, industrial and other public and private facilities. Founded in 1906 and headquartered in Washington, D.C., ACEC is a national federation of 52 state and regional organizations.