LCRA won’t lower Lake LBJ extra foot to avoid hindering RM 2900 bridge construction

Construction of the RM 2900 bridge in Kingsland continues night and day to complete the project by April. The Lower Colorado River Authority announced Jan. 11 that it would not lower Lake LBJ any more than 4 feet below normal to allow Texas Department of Transportation crews to continue work without hindrance. Staff photo by Jared Fields

Construction of the RM 2900 bridge in Kingsland continues night and day to complete the project by April. The Lower Colorado River Authority announced Jan. 11 that it would not lower Lake LBJ any more than 4 feet below normal to allow Texas Department of Transportation crews to continue work without hindrance. Staff photo by Jared Fields

FROM STAFF REPORTS

After considering lowering Lake LBJ an extra foot, the Lower Colorado River Authority announced Jan. 11 that the lake’s current level of about 4 feet below normal will be maintained for the duration of the drawdown.

The Texas Department of Transportation requested the LCRA keep the lake at just 4 feet below normal because any further lowering would hinder ongoing work at the RM 2900 bridge in Kingsland.

Previously, at the request from the city of Horseshoe Bay, the LCRA had planned to possibly lower Lake LBJ in one-inch increments up to an extra foot if it would not impact operations of the Ferguson Power Plant on Lake LBJ.

“We are pleased to be able to assist TxDOT in this important project by maintaining the lake at a four-foot drawdown,’’ LCRA General Manager Phil Wilson said. “Rebuilding the bridge as quickly and safely as possible is extremely important to everyone in the area. Though we had considered the potential of perhaps lowering the lake level a little more, it’s clear that keeping the lake level where it is now is the best solution to assist both TxDOT and property owners.”

TxDOT requested the lake remain at a level of about 820.8 feet above mean sea level.

Lake Marble Falls reached its lowered level of about 7 feet below normal operations Jan. 11. The ‘falls’ in the lake can barely be seen stretching across. The Lower Colorado River Authority will keep Lake Marble Falls between 729 feet and 730 feet above mean sea level for the duration of the drawdown. The lakes will begin to be refilled on Feb. 24. Staff photo by Jared Fields
Lake Marble Falls reached its lowered level of about 7 feet below normal operations Jan. 11. The ‘falls’ in the lake can barely be seen stretching across. The Lower Colorado River Authority will keep Lake Marble Falls between 729 feet and 730 feet above mean sea level for the duration of the drawdown. The lakes will begin to be refilled on Feb. 24. Staff photo by Jared Fields

“We greatly appreciate LCRA’s assistance in maintaining the lake at its current level to enable us to continue work on this priority project during the drawdown,” said Terry McCoy, TxDOT Austin district engineer. “A lower level would slow us down and make it impossible to use some of our construction barges as intended. The decision from LCRA to keep the level where it is now enables us to continue our work quickly and safely.”

Lake Marble Falls also is being lowered to assist property owners in recovering from the October flood. The LCRA is lowering Lake Marble Falls about 7 feet during the drawdown.

The lakes are scheduled to be refilled Feb. 24.

Full details about the drawdowns of lakes LBJ and Marble Falls can be viewed on the LCRA’s Lake Lowerings website.

A live stream of the 2900 bridge construction can be viewed at 325internet.com.

jared@thepicayune.com

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