Round Rock approves $224.8 million regional water project

On May 26, Round Rock City Council approved construction of a massive infrastructure project over 15 years in the making.

The move gave the green light for the Brushy Creek Regional Utility Authority (BCRUA) to approve a $224.8 million contract with Thalle Construction Co., Inc. and SAK Construction, LLC Joint Venture for the BCRUA Phase 2 Raw Water Delivery System Project.

“This project will enable Round Rock to meet the growing demands of our community for years to come,” said Utilities Director Michael Thane. “This will also be a reliable source of water under drought conditions.”

The construction of the deep water intake system will provide an ultimate capacity of 145 million gallons of water per day to the member cities of the BCRUA — Round Rock, Leander and Cedar Park. The City of Round Rock’s portion will be approximately $63.4 million, which will be paid for in cash, mostly from impact fees generated by new development, and not require any debt.

“The Deep Water Intake project has been planned for since the BCRUA’s inception in 2007, and the City of Round Rock has been planning financially for this project since that time,” Thane said. “Because of this advanced planning by the City, Round Rock is able to fund this project with cash.”

The BCRUA originally built a floating barge and associated raw water system on Lake Travis that began operations in mid-2012, which has been referred to as “Phase 1,” to pump raw water from the lake to the regional group’s Water Treatment Plant located in Cedar Park. The City of Round Rock began using this water in 2021 and currently uses approximately 1.5 to 2 million gallons per day (MGD).

Phase 2 will construct a permanent raw water intake in a deeper location within Lake Travis, which will replace the floating intake, and deliver the water by gravity to a new, high-capacity pumping station located on a portion of Sandy Creek Park. Raw water will then be pumped out of the pump station to the BCRUA, Cedar Park and Leander’s water treatment plants.

The Deep Water Intake will provide a reliable water supply during droughts and will have the ability to supply an additional 40.8 million gallons per day for Round Rock once completed.

The project includes:

  • Four intake screens with an associated maintenance building
  • Two-mile pipeline delivering water from the intake screens to a pump station
  • High-capacity pump station located at Sandy Creek Park
  • Pipeline from pump station to Trail’s End Road, where it will connect to the existing Phase 1 raw water pipeline.

Construction on this project is expected to begin later this summer and take approximately five years.

For more information about the BCRUA, visit bcrua.org.

About the City of Round Rock’s water sources

The City’s main source of drinking water is surface water from Lake Georgetown, which is provided through the Brazos River Authority (BRA) and pumped from Lake Georgetown to the City’s water treatment plant. The BRA also supplements the water in Lake Georgetown via a 28-mile pipeline from Lake Stillhouse Hollow. Wells drilled into the Edwards Aquifer provide a smaller portion of the City’s water. An even smaller percentage, approximately 1.5-2 MGD, is supplied through the Brushy Creek Regional Utility Authority (BCRUA) from Lake Travis. Additionally, the City has an expanding water reuse program. The City continues to seek to diversify and build its water sources for the future to maintain a high level of water security as the community continues to grow.

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