Robstown: Drainage District to Close on $4.57 Million Financing for Three Flood Infrastructure Projects
Feature Photo: View of the Robstown High School sports stadium, as seen from the Bosquez Road crossing over Ditch A of the Nueces County Drainage District No. 2. Image: Google Streets.
by Adolfo Pesquera
Robstown (Nueces County) — The Nueces County Drainage District No. 2 can expect to receive financial assistance of almost $4.6 million for three flood infrastructure projects needed in the Robstown area.
The district is bounded to the north by County Road (CR) 44, to the west by Petronila Creek, to the south by CR-14A, and to the east by CR-61. Robstown is centered on the north side of the district and other communities within its boundaries are Tierra Verde, Petronila, Violet and Tierra Grande.
On Thursday, Feb. 25, the Texas Water Development Board will take up three resolutions affecting Robstown residents. These include an $809,600 finance agreement for the Casa Blanca Drainage Improvements; a $2,453,716 agreement for the Bosquez Road/Avenue J Drainage Improvements; and a $1,311,320 agreement for the Ditch A/Bluebonnet Drainage Improvements.
The Nueces County Drainage District No. 2 was successful in passing a $5.33 million bond proposition (Proposition A) in the 2020 general election to help pay for the loans. However, $1,973,636 of the total financing from TWDB is in the form of grants.
The district needs to address critical and high-priority flood control improvements at the Casa Blanca subdivision, which has poor drainage and dilapidated infrastructure. Casa Blanca is located in southwest Robstown.
The proposed project includes topographic survey, data collection, hydrologic and hydraulic analysis, drainage improvements to the existing Ruben Chavez S. Ditch, and other downstream ditch improvements to mitigate potential flooding along the ditch and the Casa Blanca subdivision.
The existing Nueces County detention basin and canal may require improvements to convey storm water runoff downstream.
The closing for this financial agreement is scheduled for May 1. An engineering report is to be completed by Oct. 19, 2021 and the design phase should conclude by Nov. 18, 2022.
The project schedule calls for construction to begin Feb. 6, 2023 and be completed Jan. 9, 2025. The budget summary estimates that the subtotal cost for the construction phase is $583,700. The remaining funds is being spent on engineering, special services, fiscal services and the contingency account.
The Beatriz Tagle Perez Park, (aka Southside Park) in the flood prone Casa Blanca subdivision of Robstown. Image: Google Streets.
The proposed project includes topographic survey; data collection; hydrologic and hydraulic analysis; and improvements to an underground storm drain system on Robstown Independent School District (RISD) property, surface drains along Avenue J and Bosquez Road, culvert improvements at Ditch A, and other improvements at RISD detention facilities that may be required to improve drainage conditions at Robstown High School, the Bluebonnet Subdivision, Highway 44, and further downstream.
These flood control improvements will result in improved drainage capacity and function of the District’s drainage system as well as have overall positive impacts on area watersheds, including Oso Bay and Petronila Creek watersheds.
The closing is scheduled for May 1 and the engineering report is due July 5. The design phase is to conclude by Oct. 8, 2021.
Construction is to begin by Nov. 15, 2021 and be done by Oct. 19, 2023. Of the $2,453,716 that the TWDB committed to this project, $1,829,373 is to be dedicated for actual construction.
Studies have identified several issues with Ditch A that cause residential flooding, including inadequate ditch capacity, bottlenecks along the ditch due to inadequate culverts, and the need to retain stormwater overflow coming from Ditch A. The existing culverts have a dangerous headwall that do not meet traffic safety standards and cause stormwater back-up in the ditches.
The pipes in the culvert are undersized and inadequate for appropriate flow and ditch capacity to prevent residential flooding to the nearby Robstown High School and Bluebonnet Subdivision.
The proposed project includes flood control improvements at Ditch A and the Bluebonnet subdivision. The project will include topographic survey, data collection, hydrologic and hydraulic analysis, and improvements to Ditch A to provide system relief by widening channels, enlarging existing culverts, constructing detention ponds to mitigate increased runoff from nearby developments, and acquiring property to establish drainage easements to accommodate drainage improvements.
The project will also replace or retrofit existing storm drains located within the Bluebonnet Subdivision to prevent flooding.
The closing on funds is set for May 1 and the engineer’s report is due Oct. 19, 2021. The design phase is to conclude by June 1, 2022.
Construction should begin by July 18, 2022 and reach completion by June 20, 2024. Of the $1,311,320 that the TWDB committed to this project, $902,240 is to be used for actual construction.
The territory under the jurisdiction of the Nueces County Drainage District No. 2.
Adolfo Pesquera (Reporter/Editor) is a veteran news journalist. He has worked for Hearst Corp., American Lawyer Media, News Corp and Freedom Communications. His work has been published in newspapers and magazines across the USA. He is a journalism graduate of UT-RGV. He writes, edits and creates digital pages for VBX.