Texas City Dike
The Texas City Dike is a levee located in Texas City, Texas, United States that projects nearly 5mi south-east into the mouth of Galveston Bay. It is flanked by the north-eastern tip of Galveston Island and the south-western tip of the Bolivar Peninsula. The dike, one of the area’s most beloved and enduring landmarks, was originally designed to reduce the impact of sediment accumulation along the lower Bay.The Bay itself connects the Houston Ship Channel, one of the nation’s most important commercial waterways, and the Port of Houston with the Gulf of Mexico some 35nmi distant. However, as Texas City expanded from its industrial roots to become a thriving residential community, the dike’s purpose changed, and it became the city’s best hope against a catastrophic incursion of water surging westward into the low-lying community from a hurricane landfall in the Bay. It was hoped that the dike, Texas City’s primary defense against potential encroachment of water from Galveston Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, would lessen or even entirely deflect substantial damage to the city from such a potentially cataclysmic event.The Texas City Dike juts out into Galveston Bay on the easternmost end of Texas City. The dike is parallel to and north of the 50-foot deep, 600-foot wide Texas City Channel, which allows shipping traffic to access the Port of Texas City. The dike’s structure consists of a 28,200-foot-long (approximately 5.34 miles) pile dike paired with a rubble-mound dike that runs along the south edge of the pile dike (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, 2007). The Texas City Dike was built to protect the Texas City Channel from cross currents and excessive silting, although the channel must still be dredged frequently to prevent shoaling in the waterway.