This past Saturday we had many volunteers meet up at our neighborhood park for “It’s My Park Day”. The weather could not have been better! The hearty crew spread mulch around trees and did some trash pick-up. In addition to enjoying some good snacks and t-shirt schwag, we were visited by Council member Ann Kitchen. Thanks to J Rhatigan for organizing the effort and thanks to all who lent a hand to help our park!
We received the following update from the City of Austin about the Del Curto Storm Drain improvements. Visit this link for the background information about this project.
We are entering into the “Design Phase” for the Del Curto Storm Drain Project.
During design, our engineering consultant will be working out all the details of the proposed project. The design phase ends with a set of construction plans that will be used to permit, bid and construct the project. The project¹s goal is to allow storm water to flow safely to West Bouldin Creek through a combination of underground pipes and open channels. The water will enter West Bouldin Creek near Thornton.
The project will include the following components:
We will install curb and gutter along a short stretch of Bluebonnet Lane where there is currently none. The area is between Del Curto Road and South Lamar Boulevard. Curb and gutter can help keep storm water in the street.
Storm Drain Bypass
We will install an underground pipe and associated inlets on part of Bluebonnet Lane, Del Curto Road, Delcrest Drive and Kinney Road. The bypass pipe will capture rainwater and release it into the channel that runs between Kinney and Thornton.
We will increase the capacity of the channel between Kinney and Thornton. This could include making the channel wider or deeper or other options.
Storm Drain Conveyance from Thornton to West Bouldin Creek
After storm water flows through the channel between Kinney and Thornton, it crosses Thornton and flows overland into West Bouldin Creek. We will provide a path for the water to take across this area. It could take the form of a pipe or improvements to the channel or some combination.
We will acquire drainage easements at various locations in the project area. Drainage easements are a designated place for water to flow during storms. In some cases, they are also needed for access or maintenance of the drainage system.
Green Streets Component Dropped
During the internal review of this project, it was decided not to pursue the Green Streets initiative on Iva and Delcrest that was presented at the public meeting in September. This option would have improved water quality, but not the flooding.
The internal review took longer than we initially thought. We are currently expecting to start construction in the summer of 2017. This assumes that the easement acquisition process goes smoothly.
The Zika Virus is making the news as it is rapidly spreading throughout South, Central, and now into North America. Our IPM Program Specialist, Wizzie Brown, recently blogged about the virus in her “Urban IPM” blog: http://urban-ipm.blogspot.com/
IPM stands for “Integrated Pest Management”, and Wizzie’s job through the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension service is to help manage our urban insects – everything from ants, termites, and aphids to butterflies and honey bees … you name it. She helps us understand the beneficial insects and how to manage those that aren’t. Wizzie is a great resource for us.
We encourage everyone to read Wizzie’s blog and the references that she cites for more information about Zika.
As a neighborhood, we can do a lot to protect ourselves from this virus by being vigilant against standing water. Please empty any containers that collect water so mosquitoes don’t have a breeding ground. Look for anything in your yard that holds even the smallest amount of water such as buckets, flower pot trays, tarps, old tires, vehicles, boats, kayaks, etc. If you see standing water on city property, please call 311 to report it. Go on a mosquito safari in your own back yard with the folks at Texas A&M: http://mosquitosafari.tamu.edu/