Lake Palestine residents are swimming in rumors right now. Dallas Water Utilities and Tarrant Regional Water District announced that they will be building a pipeline at Lake Palestine to pump water to Dallas. The two agencies have joined together for the $2.3 billion dollar project and it has many residents concerned that their water levels will be affected.
“Everybody’s kind of freaked out about it,” Brad Root, owner of Lake Palestine Marina, said.
For Root, learning a 150 mile pipeline is in the design phase was a terrifying realization.
"Of course, as a business owner on the lake, I was extremely concerned about it," he said.
Another Lake Palestine resident couldn’t believe the plan when he first heard it.
“It was a couple years ago and I thought it was a joke, someone said, hey did you know they’re building an 8 foot pipeline that’s going to take all the water out of Palestine?” Dr. Chad McNeil said.
It’s no joke, that pipeline is coming, with a proposed finish date of 2030, but according to an official at Tarrant Regional Water District that’s not going to happen. There will still be water.
“They have a maximum amount that they can take in the course of a year,” Brian Murnahan, a spokesperson for TRWD, said.
Construction is scheduled to begin at Section 15-1 along the projected route, in Nevaro, at the beginning of next year. Dallas Water District has rights to Lake Ray Hubbard, in Dallas County, as well as six other reservoirs outside of that, including Lake Palestine. Similar plans have been proposed for those other lakes, as well.
The dependency on Lake Palestine will be determined by drought conditions and the water will be used for anything from drinking water to irrigation in Dallas.
“The idea that the lake is gonna be drained at any time is, umm, happily I can say that’s just not going to be the case,” Murnahan said.
He says similarly to current reservoirs in use in other parts of Texas, a decrease in water levels would be about 50 percent evaporation, 50 percent pumped water.
Officials also say if you live along that pipeline you may be able to tap into that water, but it will be otherwise used for Dallas. The Dallas Water Utilities and Tarrant Regional Water District say they are open to answer any further questions. You can reach the Dallas Water Utilities office at (214) 651-1441. Tarrant Regional Water District can be reached at (817) 335-2491.