Humble ISD bids flood barrier, renovation projects for Kingwood High School

The updated Kingwood High School renderings show a line following the perimeter of the campus, indicating where the flood barriers will be located. (Screenshot of rendering courtesy PBK Architects)
The updated Kingwood High School renderings show a line following the perimeter of the campus, indicating where the flood barriers will be located. (Screenshot of rendering courtesy PBK Architects)

The updated Kingwood High School renderings show a line following the perimeter of the campus, indicating where the flood barriers will be located. (Screenshot of rendering courtesy PBK Architects)

Humble ISD is accepting contracting bids for two Kingwood High School projects: one that will renovate and expand the campus, and another that could help protect the campus from future rain events.

At the Oct. 13 HISD board of trustees meeting, architectural firm PBK Architects presented the board with updated designs for Kingwood High School's $8.8 million renovations and $30 million flood barriers.

The renovations, which were first presented at the district's July 14 meeting, feature a new main entrance canopy, a new gym, an athletic lobby, and new spaces for career and technical education, or CTE. Renovations are set to begin in November and to be completed by November 2021, according to PBK.

In addition to the general renovations, Greg Prince with PBK Architects said the updated renderings also show a shaded bump along the perimeter of the school for the flood-proof walls.

"Obviously, we're doing our best to meld that into the design so it does not stand out, but it does have that feature going around the entire school," he said.


The campus received about 6 feet of water during Hurricane Harvey and underwent roughly $67 million in repairs, according to the district and previous Community Impact Newspaper reporting.

HISD announced last December that the Federal Emergency Management Agency awarded the district roughly $27 million to add flood barriers to the campus. HISD will pay the remaining $3 million of the project cost.

The project will create 8-foot, self-rising barriers over main entrances and windows and 3.5-foot barriers over other areas of the campus, PBK Senior Project Manager Jeff Chapman said.

"Everything is about the FEMA flood plain for the 500-year, and we're going 3 feet above that, ... all of which are well above the high-water mark your school received during [Hurricane] Harvey," he said.


The board of trustees will approve one or two contractors for the projects at the Nov. 10 meeting, Prince said.

After the campus's renovations are completed in November 2021, construction will begin on the flood barrier project, HISD Chief Communications Officer Jamie Mount said via email. The flood barrier project is expected to begin in December 2021 and to be completed by May 2022, she said.

"The projects are bid simultaneously because some contractors may want to bid for the additions and renovations as well as for the floodgates," she said. "Having the same contractor perform all the work could be beneficial for construction coordination at Kingwood High School. However, the district wants to consider the bid amounts submitted by each contractor."

Trustee Robert Scarfo, who is chair of the HISD Board Finance Committee, said at the Oct. 13 meeting that FEMA will be paying the first half of its promised amount to the district by the end of October and that the remainder of the payment is expected to arrive before the end of 2020.
By Kelly Schafler

Managing editor, South Houston

Kelly joined Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in June 2017 after majoring in print journalism and creative writing at the University of Houston. In March 2019, she transitioned to editor for the Lake Houston-Humble-Kingwood edition and began covering the Spring and Klein area as well in August 2020. In June 2021, Kelly was promoted to South Houston managing editor.