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Monday, January 18, 2021

Lower Bois d’Arc Creek Reservoir receives final permit needed to begin construction

Project will serve as critical water source for fast-growing North Texas communities

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has granted a 404 permit to allow construction to begin on the long-awaited Lower Bois d’Arc Reservoir (LBCR), a Feb. 2 news release stated. This is the first reservoir to be built in Texas in 30 years.

Construction on the 16,641 surface acre lake, which will be located northeast of the city of Bonham in Fannin County, is planned to begin this spring with an estimated completion in 2022.

For more than 15 years, the North Texas Municipal Water District (NTMWD) has worked with federal, state and local officials to plan for the new lake, which will provide water for the area growing communities.

“This is a major milestone for a critical project that will provide water to 1.7 million people living in about 80 communities in North Texas,” Robert Thurmond, president of the NTMWD Board of Directors, said in the release. “The lake will be one of the key sources of water to meet the needs of a growing region expected to double in population in the next 50 years.”

The construction of the reservoir required a permit under the federal Clean Water act. The release listed key agencies and entities involved in the permit process, including the USACE, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), Texas Parks and Wildlife (TPWD), Texas Water Development Board (TWDB), Fannin County and the city of Bonham.

The total cost of the project is estimated at more than $1.2 billion (2016 dollars). The TWDB has approved $1.2 billion in low-interest funding for the project through the State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT) program. According to the release, this funding is expected to save NTMWD and ratepayers nearly $200 million in financing costs.

“This has been a tremendous team effort, and we appreciate the support of all involved in the process,” NTMWD Executive Director Tom Kula said in the release. “It is a great example of the value and importance of regional water planning and collaboration among communities for the shared need of a long-term, reliable water supply.”

NTMWD serves Allen, Farmersville, Forney, Frisco, Garland, McKinney, Mesquite, Plano, Princeton, Richardson, Royce City, Rockwall and Wylie.

For more information, please visit www.ntmwd.com/projects/lower-bois-darc-creek-reservoir.

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