Millions slated to prevent future Travis County flood damage

Thoroughbred Farms home on Citation Avenue damaged by severe weather in May 2016. (KXAN Photo/ Kylie McGivern)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Residents living in flood prone areas of southeastern Travis County will learn what’s being done to protect their homes and property from future floods Wednesday night.

It was one year ago this month that the people who live along Citation Avenue in the Thoroughbred Farms area saw many of their homes destroyed as heavy rain fell and Dry Creek was anything but dry as it rose to chest deep in some spots. Travis County Commissioners are now allocating $2.5 million to buy out 14 homes along the road.

Travis County Commissioner Judge Sarah Eckhardt along with first responders will talk to residents about some of the upcoming projects to protect Thoroughbred Farms as well as the Arroyo Doble/Twin Creeks neighborhood during a community meeting at Popham Elementary School.

Both areas are slated to see what’s called a ‘drainage retrofit.’ That means a culvert that was supposed to hold back a flood will now be redesigned in an effort to contain massive amounts of water. Travis County has also partnered with Hays County to collaborate across all departments from emergency services to school districts and even neighborhood associations so everyone can work together when the next flood hits.

In all, Travis County Commissioners will spend $5.5 million on flood mitigation, which can cover a lot of projects.

“It could be a combination of flood buyouts, retention strategy, road improvements, embankment improvements, clearing of obstructions in water courses,” says Judge Eckhardt.

Travis County was able to identify the money quickly by using ‘certificates of obligation,’ which is essentially borrowing money instead of getting a voter approved bond. Officials said that was the fastest way to accomplish these projects because waiting on money from the federal government takes too long and something needs to be done soon to help residents living in flood prone areas

The community meeting takes place from 6:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Popham Elementary School Cafeteria on Elroy Road in Del Valle.

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