An ecosystem continuity and connectivity plan for the Gulf-Houston Region
The Gulf-Houston Regional Conservation Plan (Gulf-Houston RCP) is a long-term collaborative of environmental, business and governmental entities in the eight-county Gulf-Houston Region working together to promote a multiple ecosystem continuity and connectivity plan that provides (1) the 24% by 2040 Land-Use Strategy (launching Spring 2018); (2) a 4-part Action Agenda for enhanced ecosystem services; (3) environmental data analytics and analysis on the ecological aspects of the 8-county region - including comprehensive land-use, the benefits of the myriad of ecosystem services to residents, businesses, and wildlife, and targeted environmental needs and GIS-based planning efforts; (4) a Working List of all environmental-based projects in the RCP coverage area; and (5) coordinated support for various funding strategies at all levels. The RCP Working List of Projects is comprised of every known environment-based project in need of full or partial funding in the 8-county region. The RCP includes four key initiatives encompassing environmental projects around the region, divided into two phases based on land acquisition and easements or restoration and enhancements.
Learn more about the partners on this project here.
The following maps outline the key areas and projects targeted in Phases 1 and 2 of the Regional Conservation Plan
The embedded Google Map below shows the projects for Phase One (blue) and Phase Two (yellow). Click on the individual icons to learn more about the project, or click the button in the top left corner to toggle icons for the five Key Initiatives as well projects in Phase One and Phase Two.
The Gulf-Houston Regional Conservation Plan highlights four (4) ecologically significant areas (“Eco-Areas”) and contains two phases. The following four (4) Initiatives are part of the Gulf-Houston RCP - Phase One and, when fully funded, will include 280,000 acres of land acquisition, 15,000 acres in land easements and restoration, and development of over 250 recreational trail miles:
- Riparian Corridor Protection Initiative – protect riparian corridor within the nearly 50 watersheds that feed into Galveston Bay, including the Brazos, San Jacinto and Lower Trinity rivers.
- Bayou Greenways Initiative - collaborative trail and open space projects (riparian forests and wetlands) along entire 250+ mile stretch of 10 bayou arteries from Spring Creek south to Clear Creek.
- Headwater to Baywater Initiative - connecting bayous and the bay in the San Jacinto River watershed through riparian protection and restoration.
- Lower Trinity River Project - connecting ecotourism to riparian conservation by protecting riparian corridors along the Lower Trinity River in the five counties which encompass the LTR watershed leading towards Galveston Bay.
- Columbia Brazos Corridor Project - protecting and enhancing riparian habitat along the Brazos River and Columbia Bottomlands Corridor.
- Prairie Conservation Initiative – restoration and preservation of tens of thousands of acres of coastal prairie remnants that comprise the One Prairie throughout the eight counties in the RCP.
- Galveston Bay Habitat Acquisition & Easements Initiative - restoring habitat (coastal wetlands, bottomlands and estuaries) from multiple counties leading into the Bay & Gulf Coast, including Galveston Island and other nearby barrier islands.
- Galveston Bay Oyster Reefs & Migratory Bird Habitat Initiative - restoration, creation and preservation of Galveston Bay oyster reefs, inland rookery islands and other bird habitat within the lower Galveston Bay watershed.
- Gulf-Houston Monarch Flyway Strategy - is a collaborative effort focused on the preservation and creation of monarch butterfly and other pollinator habitat in the region.
Click the links below to access key documents about the plan: