Guadalupe Blanco River Authority initiates reservoir project in Calhoun County

Sara  Sneath By Sara Sneath

April 16, 2014 at 11 p.m.
Updated April 16, 2014 at 11:17 p.m.

The Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority is moving forward with a plan to create a reservoir in Calhoun County.

"The project could be complete within five years," said Bill West Jr., GBRA general manager.

The 100- to 500-acre reservoir will hold about 100,000 acre-feet of water, about 32.6 billion gallons, for use by local municipalities, industry and agriculture. The goal of the reservoir would be to help guarantee water during times of drought to local parties who have existing water rights. Priority to the water would be on a first-come, first-serve basis, GBRA spokeswoman LaMarriol Smith said.

The project would pull water from the Guadalupe River that is already set aside for GBRA, West said.

The location for the site is still unclear, but the area being considered is owned by private and industrial landowners.

"The land acquisition will be on the basis of a friendly seller and a friendly buyer. We will not exercise imminent domain to acquire the land," West said.

GBRA estimates the cost to purchase the land at $13 million and the total cost of the project at $39.5 million.

The project is relatively less expensive and could have a much shorter turnaround than most water projects, especially compared to seawater desalination, Smith said.

The GBRA is also considering a more ambitious project, which would create a 4,000-acre reservoir in Calhoun County, about 20 percent larger than Coleto Creek. The project is estimated to cost about $247 million but is still in preliminary stages.



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