Block House Creek ranked the highest in the city’s Stormwater Master Plan, a guide Cedar Park City Council approved in March that prioritizes stormwater drainage projects throughout the city.
At its regular meeting Dec. 12, Cedar Park City Council voted 4-0 to authorize the execution of a professional services agreement for the design of the Block House Creek Channelization project. The project involves excavating a channel along Block House Creek between Peach Tree Lane and North Bell Boulevard, according to city documents. The project aims to reduce the risk of structural flooding.
Emily Truman, the city’s stormwater program manager, said during the meeting that this is the first project the city has selected to design in the stormwater program. The Block House Creek Channelization project will have multiple phases, the first of which will remove 12 of 66 properties out of the Federal Emergency Management Agency flood plain hazard area, Truman said. FEMA’s flood plain designations determine whether property owners must purchase flood insurance.
“The idea is to get all 66 out of the flood hazard area,” Truman said.
Funding for the design services, which totals $134,000, comes from the fiscal year 2019-20 stormwater program budget, according to city documents. The total project cost is estimated at $1 million, Truman said. The city has applied for FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grants to help fund the project as well, according to city documents.
Scheibe Consulting LLC, a civil engineering company in Austin, was selected to complete the design work.
The city has been working to improve flooding issues in Cedar Park for the last several years. The city pursued a sales tax reallocation election in May 2018 to fund a stormwater program, which voters approved.
Mayor Pro Tem Mel Kirkland said at the Dec. 12 meeting he is happy about the program’s progress.
“I’m really glad that we’re moving forward with the drainage program and that we’re able to start [the Block House Creek Channelization project] as one of the first projects on the list,” Kirkland said. “This area has been needing drainage help for a lot of years.”