City Council Approves Drainage Improvement Project in Austin Park and Chimneystone

Flooding at the Brazos

Sugar Land City Council has approved an engineering design contract to improve drainage in the Austin Park and Chimneystone subdivisions, a top priority identified by Sugar Land residents through the 2020 Citizen Satisfaction Survey.

The project was approved by Sugar Land residents as a part of the 2019 General Obligation (GO) Bond Program; more than half of the GO Bond Program projects address drainage issues.

The approval of the GO Bond Program included a voter-approved 0.45 cent tax rate increase in fiscal year 2021, representing less than $15 per year for the average Sugar Land homeowner. Despite this increase, Sugar Land still has one of the lowest tax rates in Texas.

This drainage project and the GO Bond Program are also a part of the city’s Capital Improvement Program, also known as CIP, which identifies capital projects, provides planning, design, and construction schedules, and identifies financing options. The program addresses the current and future needs of the city and residents through efficient and responsible financial management.

In May 2021, the Texas Water Development Board approved the city’s application for Flood Infrastructure Funding. The total budget of $16.5 million—which includes design and construction funds—is a zero percent interest 30-year loan, with potential savings of over $7.6 million based on the 30-year life of the loan and current interest rates. With this loan, the city will be able to combine the previously planned two phases of construction into one phase.

Based on citizen requests, annual reviews, and the increasing frequency of major storm events, drainage projects are a major component of the CIP.

The Austin Park and Chimneystone subdivisions drainage improvements will reduce structure flooding risks and reduce the ponding depths and durations during major rain events. The completion of the design is anticipated in September 2022 with construction planned for November 2022.

This investment is just a piece of the city’s commitment to our residents to fulfill the 2019 GO bond program and provide a response to address aging infrastructure,” said Assistant City Manager Chris Steubing. “Sugar Land is a city worth investing in, and we continue to seek creative approaches to deliver the bond projects through the CIP that allow for a major response to our infrastructure needs in a fiscally responsible way.”

To see how the projects are spread geographically throughout the city, visit www.sugarlandtx.gov/GOBondMap.

For more information about GO Bond Program projects including a complete project listing, visit www.sugarlandtx.gov/GObond.

More information about the FY21-25 CIP Program can be found at https://www.sugarlandtx.gov/1770/Capital-Improvement-Program.