LCRA to keep Lake LBJ lowered 4 feet throughout lake drawdown to assist TxDOT

Additional lowering would hinder RM 2900 bridge replacement project

Jan. 11, 2019

The Lower Colorado River Authority has temporarily lowered Lake LBJ about 4 feet to assist property owners in clearing debris and making repairs caused by massive floods last October. At the request of TxDOT, which is replacing the RM 2900 bridge washed away in the flooding, LCRA plans to maintain the current lake level the length of the drawdown and will not pursue a plan to potentially lower the lake a little further. 

LCRA had planned to explore the possibility of lowering Lake LBJ an additional inch at a time, to a maximum of an additional foot, to determine if it could be lowered further without impacting the operations of the Ferguson Power Plant on the shores of Lake LBJ.

TxDOT has since requested the lake be maintained at its current lowered level of about 820.8 feet above mean sea level, saying a larger drawdown would hinder the ongoing work at the bridge.

“We are pleased to be able to assist TxDOT in this important project by maintaining the lake at a 4-foot drawdown,’’ said LCRA General Manager Phil Wilson. “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.’’

The RM 2900 bridge on the Llano River in Kingsland washed away during flooding on Oct. 16. The contractor is working around the clock to rebuild the bridge, with work expected to be complete in April.

“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.”

LCRA is lowering lakes LBJ and Marble Falls to assist property owners in recovering from the recent flooding. Lake LBJ is drawn down about 4 feet and Lake Marble Falls is being lowered about 7 feet. Lake Marble Falls is expected to reach its full lowered level on Jan. 11-12.

The refill is scheduled to begin Feb. 24.

Unforeseen circumstances such as floods or power emergencies could prompt LCRA to change or cancel the drawdown. For more information, visit lcra.org/lakelowerings.

About LCRA
The Lower Colorado River Authority serves customers and communities throughout Texas by managing the lower Colorado River; generating and transmitting electric power; providing a clean, reliable water supply; and offering access to nature at more than 40 parks, recreation areas and river access sites along the Texas Colorado River, from the Hill Country to the Gulf Coast. LCRA and its employees are committed to enhancing the lives of Texans through water stewardship, energy and community services. LCRA was created by the Texas Legislature in 1934. For more information, visit lcra.org.

Media Contacts

LCRA:

Clara Tuma 512–578–3292
clara.tuma@lcra.org


TxDOT:

Diann Hodges 512-832-7027
Diann.Hodges@txdot.gov