FAQs

About TRWD

George W. Shannon Wetlands Facility

IPL Project

Lake Level Monitoring

Notice to Purchaser Information

Open Records Request

Recreation

Water Quality

Water Supply

Watershed Protection

About TRWD

How many customers does TRWD serve?
The district serves four initial contracting parties from the amendatory contract – the cities of Fort Worth, Arlington, Mansfield and the Trinity River Authority; 27 municipal customers with contracts that range from 20 to 40 years; 11 industrial customers; and 15 irrigation customers.
How many people does TRWD supply water to?
As of 2015, the district serves 2,096,667 people. This number is a compilation of all the citizens in TRWD’s service area and published in the Region C plan, which is updated every 5 years.

George W. Shannon Wetlands Facility

Where are the wetlands located?
Adjacent to the Richland-Chambers Lake dam on the north side of Highway 287, approximately 25 miles Southeast of Corsicana, Texas. The wetlands are located on the Richland Creek Wildlife Management Area. GPS Coordinates: 31°58'09.8"N 96°05'01.3"W
What is the general purpose of the wetlands?
The George W. Shannon Wetlands are a water supply project built to meet growing water demands in TRWD’s service area. Wetlands also play a number of roles in the environment, including water purification, flood control and provide habitats for wildlife.
Who owns the wetlands
A partnership was formed between TRWD and the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department (TPWD) to create the George W. Shannon Wetlands. TRWD funded construction and currently manages the wetland system for water supply. TPWD operates the wetlands and surrounding property for recreational public use.
What is the flow of water?
TRWD customers discharge water into the Trinity River from wastewater facilities. The water travels down the Trinity River where it is then diverted into the wetland system for treatment and then pumped into Richland Chambers Reservoir. Water is then pumped west through TRWD’s pipeline to Tarrant County where it helps meet the demands of TRWD customers.
How do I know if the wetland is open?
Contact Texas Parks & Wildlife Department at (903) 389-7080.
Can I tour the wetlands?
Yes. The wetlands are open to the public year round. We recommend planning a tour from mid-February through May. There are no facilities available for 10 miles. It’s recommended to bring any needed food/drinks for your group. Texas Parks & Wildlife Department requires daily registration for all visitors. A Limited Public Use Permit or an Annual Public Hunting permit can be obtained through their website.
What is the average water depth?
Each wetland cell has deep water zones that are approximately 6’ deep. The remaining marsh area of the wet cells are 6-12” deep.

IPL Project

Why is TRWD building the Integrated Pipeline (IPL) Project?

The water we use in our daily routines comes from a series of reservoirs scattered across the region. In fact, the two lakes that supply Tarrant County with most of its water – Cedar Creek and Richland-Chambers – are located in East Texas. Huge pipelines are used to bring water to places we need it. But over the decades, the metroplex has grown and with it the demand for more water. The number of households, businesses and people drinking from those lines has grown, too. At some point, our current two pipelines won’t be enough. The IPL offers a solution by allowing access to Lake Palestine, which will be used to supply City of Dallas customers as well as access to more water in Cedar Creek and Richland-Chambers. The IPL gives TRWD and Dallas Water Utilities the ability to bring an additional 350 million gallons per day into the metroplex. Plus it provides a way for the district to bring additional supplies from two water reuse projects in East Texas.

How much is IPL going to cost?

$2.3 billion, but those costs are being shared by TRWD and Dallas Water Utilities, and building one pipeline together instead of two separate lines actually adds up to approximately $1 billion in savings.

TRWD and DWU are teaming together on the IPL, but who pays for what and how will the water supply be separated?

Since Lake Palestine is located further east than TRWD water supply reservoirs, Dallas Water Utilities (DWU) is paying the additional cost to make that connection. The cost to build other sections, the ones shared by DWU and TRWD, will be covered by both entities. And the final locations, places where the water begins its solo journey into Dallas or Tarrant County, will be the responsibility of the agency receiving the water. Though some of these costs are shared, the water in the system remains separate.

Does the IPL provide additional reliability to our system?

Yes, the pipeline is located along a separate path than TRWD’s existing pipelines and operates in a whole different electric grid. TRWD takes the responsibility of managing and operating a reliable system very seriously and understands the importance of providing a reliable water supply to its customers.

When will the IPL be completed?

The first phase of the project is scheduled for completion by 2018. As the district continues to monitor water demands, new sections of pipeline won’t be added to the IPL until they are needed. This gives the district time to pay down debt, which adds up to huge savings. The IPL is expected to be operational by 2021.

Lake Level Monitoring

What is conservation level?

The amount of water an entity can impound at a reservoir under its Water Rights Permit. Once a reservoir fills its conservation pool, any water above that level must be discharged unless the water is being temporarily stored for routing flood waters.

Conservation Levels for TRWD Lakes

Richland-Chambers 315.0

Bridgeport 836.0

Eagle Mountain 649.1

Cedar Creek 322.0

Conservation Levels for Non-TRWD Lakes

Arlington 550.0

Benbrook 694.0

Lake Worth 594.0

How do you decide how much water to release at each lake?

We use sophisticated computer models to inform how we operate TRWD lakes. Engineers and management work together to decide what is best for the TRWD system. Our primary concern is the integrity of TRWD dams. TRWD has a flood flowage easement to elevation 668 feet on Eagle Mountain Lake and 856 feet on Lake Bridgeport. Improvements within the flood flowage easement are located there at the owner’s risk.

Why don’t you pre-release when the weather predicts significant rainfall?

TRWD’s flood management operations do not allow pre-releases for several reasons. (1) TRWD does not have the legal right to pre-release downstream. (2) Any water released when a lake is not above its conservation level counts against TRWD’s permitted water supply amount; taking away from water that is no longer able to be used by Tarrant County citizens. (3) Frequently, the expected rainfall does not actually fall or does not reach TRWD reservoirs. The unpredictability of the weather makes these pre-releases too risky.

Why are you discharging water? 

The amount of water an entity can impound at a reservoir under its Water Rights Permit. Once a reservoir fills its conservation pool, any water above that level must be discharged unless the water is being temporarily stored for routing flood waters.

What is a Flood Flowage Easement and how is it used by the district?

A flowage easement grants a reservoir operator, such as TRWD, a full, complete and perpetual right, power, privilege and easement to occasionally overflow, flood and submerge lands in connection with the operation and maintenance of a lake.

What is the current lake level?

To monitor lake elevations, visit TRWD’s Lake Level Blog. Current lake elevations are also listed on the upper right corner of our website.

How long will it take for the water to recede once it has crested?

TRWD forecasters can typically provide an estimated calculation and can be reached during flood operations at 817-720-4296. Forecasted elevations are also posted on TRWD’s Lake Level Blog. The blog is updated regularly when TRWD believes there is a potential threat to lake-area homes. Values are based on no additional rain.

What happens if you close a lake?

Lake closures at TRWD reservoirs are posted on TRWD’s Lake Level Blog and Facebook page. Information for Lake Worth can be found on the City of Fort Worth’s news page. Lake Bridgeport typically closes around 837.0 feet and Eagle Mountain typically closes around 650.5 feet. Each lake closure is evaluated individually based on forecasted inflows and outflows.

I live on a TRWD reservoir, should I ever be worried about my house flooding?

First, you should determine if you live in a floodplain. A floodplain is land bordering rivers and lakes subject to flooding and will be noted in your title policy when the homeowner purchased the house. As a naturally occurring feature of the landscape, a floodplain carries excess water when heavy rains cause streams to overflow. No matter what size or shape, all floodplains have one thing in common – they flood. To find out if you live on a floodplain and the frequency of flood risks, examine legal documents, such as your loan documents or deeds.

If the area by my house floods, will TRWD provide sandbags?

TRWD provides sandbags when resources are available. We will notify potentially affected lake area residents about their availability on our Facebook page.

Does TRWD help with cleanup after a flood, such as logs washed into lawns or floating debris?

Homeowners are responsible for their own property. If there is debris that is a hazard to navigation, TRWD will remove it. Otherwise, this is a natural occurrence. Any public assistance with cleanups will be posted on TRWD’s website and Facebook page.

Notice to Purchaser Information

According to Section 49.452 of the Texas Water Code, TRWD is not required to provide a Notice to Purchaser for real estate transactions within its boundaries. The District does not provide services to household or commercial users, and does not currently have any outstanding general obligation debt to provide those services.

Do I need a notice to purchaser if I buy land in TRWD taxing district?

At this time, we are not required to provide a notice to purchaser for any real estate transactions within our taxing district.

Open Records Request

According to Section 49.452 of the Texas Water Code, TRWD is not required to provide a Notice to Purchaser for real estate transactions within its boundaries. The District does not provide services to household or commercial users, and does not currently have any outstanding general obligation debt to provide those services.
How to Request Open Records
To request open records from the Tarrant Regional Water District (TRWD), fill out the form and click “Submit” or submit by mail or fax. Provide a detailed description of the records requested and include the name, address, and a daytime telephone number of the person making the request. Requests submitted after 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday will be considered as received on the next business day. Requests submitted after 4:30 p.m. on Friday will be considered as received on the next business day. By Mail: TRWD, Attn: Open Records Request 800 E. Northside Drive Fort Worth, Texas 76102 By Fax: 817-877-5137 “Attn: Open Records Request”
What you need to know about Open Records Requests
Information taken from the Office of the Attorney General website Your request must be in writing. Only written requests trigger a governmental body’s obligation under the Public Information Act. Your request should be for records that are already in existence. Governmental bodies are not required to answer questions, perform legal research, or comply with a continuing request to supply information on a periodic basis as such information is prepared in the future. The Public Information Act allows governmental bodies to set a charge for providing copies of public records.
What Requestors can expect
The governmental body must “promptly” produce public records in response to your request.  “Promptly” means that a governmental body may take a reasonable amount of time to produce the records, which varies depending on the facts in each case.  The amount of records you have requested is highly relevant to what makes a reasonable response time. Please note that TRWD is required to give a response to written requests for records within ten business days.  This response may range from providing the requested records, seeking clarification of the request, certifying to a date that the records could be produced or seeking an Attorney General opinion. If clarification is sought, please note that a request for information is considered withdrawn if the requestor does not respond in writing to the District’s written request for clarification or additional information within 61 days. The Public Information Act prohibits the governmental body from asking why you want the records you have requested. The governmental body may, however, ask you to clarify the request if it is uncertain as to what you want, and it may discuss with you how the scope of your request may be narrowed if you have requested a large amount of information. If the governmental body wishes to withhold any of the information requested, it must: Seek an attorney general decision within ten business days of its receipt of the request and state the exceptions to disclosure that it believes are applicable. The governmental body must also send you a copy of its letter to the attorney general requesting a decision within ten business days. If the governmental body does not notify you of its request for an attorney general decision, the records you requested are generally presumed to be open to the public. Within 15 business days of receiving your request, the governmental body must send the attorney general its arguments for withholding the requested information and copies of the records that were requested.  You are entitled to receive this notice; however, if the letter to the attorney general contains the substance of the information requested, you may receive a redacted copy of the letter. If the governmental body does not timely request an attorney general decision, notify you that it is seeking an attorney general decision, and submit to the attorney general the records you requested the record is generally presumed to be open to the public. If an attorney general decision has been requested, you may submit your written comments to the attorney general stating any facts you want the Open Records Division to consider.

Recreation

Trinity Trails
Who maintains the Trinity Trails?

Trail maintenance is a shared responsibility between TRWD and the City of Fort Worth.

What are trail hours?

TRWD Trail Hours are 6am to 10pm.

Are motorized vehicles allowed on the trails?

No. The trails are specifically for walkers, joggers and bikers. Motorized vehicles are prohibited.

Are dogs allowed on the trails?

Yes, dogs are welcome on a leash. And don’t forget to clean up after your furry friends.

Are there kayak access points on the Trinity River?

Yes, and we have an easy Kayak Launch Guide you can follow.

Eagle Mountain Park
What are the hours of Eagle Mountain Park?

The park is open seven days a week from dawn until dusk.

Twin Points Park
What form of payment is accepted at the park entrance?

Cash and major credits cards are accepted.

Water Quality

How is my drinking water treated?

TRWD does not treat water for drinking. The district delivers raw water to its customers’ water treatment plants and storage lakes in Tarrant County where the cities then treat the water and supply more than 2 million residents.

What is the quality of our reservoirs?

Since the late 1980s, TRWD has been collecting water quality data from each reservoir, the major tributaries to each reservoir and some wastewater plants near the reservoir. Samples are typically taken quarterly, and the data is used to monitor the health of the water on a short-term and long-term scale. The reservoirs were built for water supply, and for that purpose the water quality is in great shape. This chart shows the parameters that are monitored. Read the most recent water quality executive summary.

Is the water safe to swim in?

There is inherent danger when swimming in a natural lake because of naturally occurring bacteria. TRWD routinely samples the reservoirs and Trinity River for E. coli bacteria. This data is used to assess the waters based on the standards set by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and approved by the US EPA. Our reservoirs have shown great compliance under the standard for contact recreation, but we know at times of flooding when the water is turbid from runoff, the potential for elevated bacteria is a concern. The Trinity River is much more susceptible to a change in water quality from a small rain than reservoirs. Users should exercise caution on the river after a local rain.

What causes tastes and/or odor changes?

Geosmin, an organic compound commonly found in Texas lakes during the winter months, causes the taste and odor changes. Geosmin is not harmful to your health but does have a distinct earthy flavor and aroma. Customer cities are aware of the change and treat for geosmin; however, there are times when they cannot fully remove it. The district also performs regular water quality monitoring and posts these reports monthly.

Are there wastewater plants on our lakes?

Yes, all of the TRWD reservoirs have wastewater plants that either discharge directly to the lake or in close proximity. All these plants go through a process of treating the wastewater regulated by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality such that no solids are discharged and the water has received some method of disinfection. The total volume of wastewater entering the reservoirs is very small when compared to amount of water coming from rainfall in the watershed of above each reservoir.

Are the fish safe to eat from the lakes and Trinity River?

There are no fish consumption advisories for any of the TRWD reservoirs. Lake Worth, which is managed by the City of Fort Worth, has an advisory posted for channel and blue catfish and smallmouth buffalo that extends up to the segment of the Trinity River between Lake Worth and Eagle Mountain Lake (ADV-45). The Clear Fork of the Trinity River below Lake Benbrook and West Fork of the Trinity below Lake Worth continuing downstream south of Dallas do have advisories posted warning of no consumption of any species of fish (ADV-43). Please visit the Texas Department of State Health Services for maps and the latest posting of fish consumption advisories.

Water Supply

Where does Tarrant County's water come from?

During a typical year, 80 to 85 percent of the water TRWD provides to its primary wholesale customers comes from Cedar Creek and Richland-Chambers lakes. The other 15 to 20 percent comes from Lake Bridgeport, Eagle Mountain Lake and Benbrook Lake. (Benbrook Lake is managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers).

What does conservation level mean?

The amount of water an entity can impound at a reservoir under its Water Rights Permit. Once a reservoir fills its conservation pool, any water above that level must be discharged unless the water is being temporarily stored for routing flood waters.

Conservation Levels for TRWD Lakes:

Richland-Chambers 315.0

Bridgeport 836.0

Eagle Mountain 649.1

Cedar Creek 322.0

Conservation Levels for Non-TRWD Lakes:

Arlington 550.0

Benbrook 694.0

Lake Worth 594.0

Does TRWD post information about water levels and pumping changes? 

Yes. TRWD posts this information daily. TRWD’s Daily Report is updated every 24 hours and lists the following data for TRWD lakes as well as Benbrook Lake, Lake Arlington and Lake Worth: Conservation Level, Lake Level, Change in Lake Level, Pumpage from Lake, Pumpage into Lake, Flood Discharge, Water Release and Evaporation.

But we have a reliable water supply, why should I protect/conserve water?

Water supplies are strained by growing populations and increasing demand. Each year, Texans spend more than $1 billion dollars on new or expanded water supply and wastewater treatment facilities. Water conservation not only saves money on your monthly water bill, it also minimizes future water shortages and costs. The district manages two water conservation campaigns: Save Tarrant Water and Water is Awesome.

Watershed Protection

What is a watershed?

A watershed is an area of land that water flows over on its way to streams, rivers and lakes. What happens in our watersheds affects the quality of water. Protecting our watersheds is an integral part of protecting water supplies and ensuring safe drinking water.

Which watershed do I live in?

View our interactive map

What is TRWD’s History with the program?

TRWD has actively supported responsible watershed management for almost 50 years, beginning with federal and local agencies in the Big Sandy Creek portion of the Eagle Mountain Lake watershed. More recently, TRWD worked diligently to gain state and federal recognition of the importance of watersheds in protecting drinking water supplies. Through this support and subsequent funding, the first in‐depth studies to identify watershed‐based stressors and solutions were conducted in TRWD watersheds. These studies were the precursor to TRWD’s existing Watershed Program.

Today, the program focuses on scientifically sound, stakeholder‐driven strategies to implement sustainable and economically feasible land management and educational initiatives that protect TRWD drinking water supplies and the Trinity River within the bounds of the Fort Worth Federal Floodway System.

What are some best practices for agriculture owners?

Agricultural best management practices are structures and activities that help protect and improve water quality by minimizing the use of chemicals and controlling stormwater using techniques that reduce stormwater runoff and promote infiltration. The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service has developed regional lists of agricultural practices that protect soil and water from erosion and degradation. TRWD actively supports the use of these measures in our watersheds by supporting educational initiatives and implementation programs along with our state and local agricultural agencies.

What is stormwater?

When rain falls to the ground, it either soaks in or runs off. Plants provide a natural pathway along with its leaves, stems, and roots, and finally to the ground where rainwater can slowly soak in. When vegetation is replaced by rooftops, driveways, or other hard surfaces, water is prevented from soaking into the soil and is forced into storm drains and waterways. This fast‐moving stormwater has a much greater potential to create erosion and move pollutants into our streams, rivers, and lakes.

Urban areas make up a relatively small part of TRWD reservoir watersheds, but stormwater runoff from these areas can have significant impacts to water quality. Sediment, bacteria, nutrients, and toxic chemicals are some of the pollutants that routinely occur in urban stormwater.