Mary Rhodes Pipeline (Phase II)
The Corpus Christi regional water system administered by the City of Corpus Christi (Corpus Christi) serves communities in seven Coastal Bend counties, including Aransas, Bee, Jim Wells, Kleberg, Live Oak, Nueces, and San Patricio. Corpus Christi is building a new pipeline to transport purchased surface water from the Colorado River near Bay City to the Lavaca-Navidad River Authority's existing West Delivery Pump Station south of Lake Texana.
The Mary Rhodes Phase 2 Pipeline will tie into Corpus Christi's Mary Rhodes Phase 1 Pipeline, alsoknown as the Texana Pipeline, which currently transports water from Lake Texana to the Coastal Bend Region. The Mary Rhodes Phase 1 Pipeline has been in operation since 1998. The water transported via the Mary Rhodes Phase 2 Pipeline will be used by Corpus Christi customers including various municipal and industrial customers.
The project includes the following structures:
Mary Rhodes Phase 2 water intake structure, river pump station, sedimentation basin, and booster pump station.
Tie-in to the Mary Rhodes Phase 1 Pipeline at the existing West Delivery Pump Station.
41-mile Mary Rhodes Phase 2 Pipeline (54” diameter pipe).
Fiber optic communication system.
The Mary Rhodes Phase 2 project is a recommended water management strategy identified in the State Water Plan and the Region N Water Plan for meeting the water needs of the Coastal Bend Region. Corpus Christi takes a long-term approach to water planning and has an excellent record of maximizing the use of its existing water supplies and implementing conservation measures
In 1992, Corpus Christi entered into an option agreement with Garwood Irrigation Company (Garwood) for the purchase of 35,000 acre-feet per year (1 acre-foot equals 325,851 gallons).This amount was a portion of Garwood’s larger water right, the oldest water right along the Colorado River. Most of Garwood's service area was outside the lower Colorado River Basin with a large portion of its water right used for irrigation of crops in the Lavaca-Navidad River Basin.
In 1999, Corpus Christi finalized the purchase of a minorityportion ofGarwood’s right, having received the approval of the Texas Natural Resource ConservationCommission (the predecessor agency to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality) in 1998. Garwood also sold its remaining water right and related assets to the Lower Colorado River Authority in 1999. With the purchase of the 35,000 acre-feet water right, Corpus Christi was authorized to pump water from the Colorado River at a maximum diversion rate of 298 acre-feet per day. In 2010, Corpus Christi began the initial steps in planning and designing Mary Rhodes Pipeline Phase 2. In September of 2011, they completed the preliminary phase of the project, and in October of 2013 they completed the Design Phase of the project. Corpus Christi completed bidding in January 2014 and awarded construction contracts in February 2014. The construction of Mary Rhodes Pipeline Phase 2 then started in April.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Why is the project moving forward now?
This pipeline is a priority project identified inthe State Water Plan as a recommended water management strategy for the CoastalBend water planning Region. The projections in this plan currently show thatthe Coastal Bend Region will need the Garwood water by the 2020-2030 timeframeso that demands do not exceed supplies.
When will construction begin?
Construction of the project started April 2014. Itis estimated that it will be completed by summer 2015.
How will Corpus Christi’s use of theMary Rhodes Phase 2 Pipeline affect groundwater supplies?
The use of the Garwood water right will not affectgroundwater supplies. Corpus Christi will only use surface water from theColorado River.
Is Corpus Christi properly managingthe use of its current water supplies?
In the 1980s, Corpus Christi was one of the firstcities in the state to develop a water conservation plan and has an outstandingrecord of effectively implementing conservation measures to reduce per capitawater use. In addition, Corpus Christi has been proactive about planning forfuture industrial and municipal water needs. Refineries in Corpus Christi useapproximately 36 gallons of water per barrel of oil refined vs. a statewideaverage of 100 gallons of water per barrel of oil refined, and a national averageof 110 gallons of water per barrel of oil refined.
How will the use of the Mary RhodesPhase 2 Pipeline affect the water levels in the Colorado River near Bay City and downstream?
Corpus Christi will continue to coordinate with theLower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) to manage the water levels andavailability in the Colorado River. The LCRA's water planning wateravailability models, as well as the Texas Water Development Board's CoastalBend Region N water use model, have reflected Corpus Christi's full use of thewater right for the past decade.
How will this project benefit thecounties along the pipeline route?
Corpus Christi plans to look for opportunitiesthroughout the construction phase to benefit local communities such asemploying local companies in material procurement.
Will private property from landowners be needed for this new pipeline?
Yes, Corpus Christi purchased some right of way.However, Corpus Christi minimized the impact to private property as much aspossible. Right-of-Way and Title Services and Welder Leshin, LLP assistedCorpus Christi with purchase of private property.
When will private property be acquired for the pipeline and how much will be paid for property?
The property was acquired in 2013. The amount paid for property was based on fair market value