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TRWD, Fort Worth and Leonard agree on permit terms for new water reclamation facility in west Fort Worth

By May 13, 2022

Fort Worth, Tarrant Regional Water District (TRWD) and Martha Leonard have agreed to terms that allow Fort Worth to obtain a discharge permit for the planned Mary’s Creek Water Reclamation Facility.

The terms are a result of Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) mediated discussions that paralleled the contested case hearing process. Fort Worth has agreed to more stringent treatment requirements to further protect water quality.

Leonard, who is a downstream, private landowner on the banks of Mary’s Creek, said, “I am very pleased and proud of the city and TRWD for coming to a mutual agreement with a plan that both increases water supply and protects water quality for all its citizens and customers. It is encouraging to see mediation successful.”

The TRWD Board of Directors will consider approving the settlement at its meeting on Tuesday. The Fort Worth City Council is expected to act at its May 24 meeting.

As part of the agreement, TRWD will permit, design and construct a project to divert flows from the Mary’s Creek channel downstream of Fort Worth’s facility to the existing TRWD water supply system. There the water will be blended with water from other TRWD lakes.

This type of reclamation project is an efficient use of water resources that keeps more water where it is most needed. The project is among the lowest cost water supply alternatives available to the district – a benefit for all of TRWD’s customer base, including Fort Worth.

“The settlement is a win-win solution that protects water quality, allows efficient use of water resources, and allows Fort Worth to move forward with the Mary’s Creek facility to support growth in the area,” said Rachel Ickert, TRWD chief water resources officer.

Fort Worth also can pursue direct non-potable use of the water for retail industrial and irrigation customers in the future. Direct reclaimed water to customers in west Fort Worth is another cost effective water supply strategy and is in the State Water Plan.

“This agreement allows Fort Worth to move forward with the design of this much needed advanced treatment facility that will be protective of the environment. At the same time, it provides both a direct and indirect reuse water supply that both Fort Worth and TRWD can use to support future growth in a financially prudent manner,” said Chris Harder, Fort Worth water director.
Starting the work to design and construct the Mary’s Creek facility is critical because proposed developments in Fort Worth will exceed the capacity of wastewater collection lines in the future. Accordingly, Fort Worth will initiate the design process as soon as it receives a discharge permit from TCEQ.

Lake Current Level Conservation Level* Level Difference**
Arlington 547.90 550.00 -2.10
Benbrook 690.67 694.00 -3.33
Bridgeport 833.23 836.00 -2.77
Cedar Creek 320.46 322.00 -1.54
Eagle Mountain 646.95 649.10 -2.15
Lake Worth 592.35 594.00 -1.65
Richland-Chambers 312.72 315.00 -2.28
*Conservation Level: The permitted level of water an entity is allowed to hold in a lake. Any amount above the conservation level is used for the temporary storage of flood waters and must be released downstream.
**Difference: Amount above or below conservation level.
For more information read our daily reports or the TRWD Lake Level Blog.

Check out the TRWD OneRain portal for a visualization of this information and more.

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