GALVESTON, Texas (June 29, 2016) – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Galveston District will host an initial public scoping meeting July 12, 2016, from 6–8 p.m. at the West Columbia Civic Center, 516 E. Brazos Avenue (State Highway 35), West Columbia, Texas 77486, to inform the public about the ongoing feasibility study activities for the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway (GIWW) Brazos River Floodgates (BRFG) and Colorado River Locks (CRL) and solicit public input regarding the study.
“The Feasibility Study will assess current identified conditions and develop specific measures and alternatives that can be combined or used as standalone actions to address the challenges at each location,” said Project Manager Franchelle Craft, USACE Galveston District. “We will conduct the assessment of the floodgates and locks separately and combine the results into one integrated feasibility report.”
According to Craft, the goal of the feasibility phase is to find the most cost-effective solution that responds to the issues while balancing the need to protect the environment. Staff will gather public feedback about significant issues and impacts that need to be addressed regarding navigation along the GIWW, which continues to be constrained at the confluence with the floodgates and locks.
“Public involvement is an essential part of our processes and we encourage any dialogue that discusses concerns or issues surrounding the study,” said Craft. “We also work closely with various federal, state, local agencies and interested organizations to incorporate their opinions when assessing proposed actions.”
The feasibility study will reevaluate the proposed alternatives identified in the 2000 Reconnaissance Study to determine the feasibility of undertaking modifications to the Brazos and Colorado river crossings, as well as identify changes to the floodgate and lock structures at each location that are economically and environmentally justified. Information gained from the public scoping meeting will be used in the development of an Environmental Impact Statement in compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act requirements.
“We will continue to gather comments and concerns for weeks following the public scoping meeting to gain insight about opportunities to improve navigation along the GIWW at the Brazos and Colorado rivers, pinpoint resources within the study area as well as identify social, economic and environmental concerns,” said Craft.
Written comments may be submitted to Franchelle Craft, USACE Galveston District, 2000 Fort Point Road, Galveston, TX 77550. Comments can also be sent electronically via email to firstname.lastname@example.org or directed to(409) 766–3187. All comments must be received or postmarked by Aug. 11, 2016.