|San Jacinto News-Times - Local News
Copyright 2011 - Polk County Publishing Company
City of Point Blank completes road work
funded from Hurricane Ike recovery funds
San Jacinto News- Times
POINT BLANK -- The City of Point Blank completed road and drainage improvements on Wilderness Road, Governor’s Point Drive and Governor Hogg Drive on March 23, well ahead of its April 2011 goal. The construction project was funded by a $152,848 grant from the Texas Department of Rural Affairs disaster recovery program. In 2008 fl ood water from Hurricane Ike damaged the roads and left standing water in roadways, threatening the health and safety of people in the city. Debris removal after the hurricane, as well as relief efforts and utility repair, further damaged the roads and drainage system. “As the 2011 storm season approaches, this project has made the city better prepared to withstand future disasters,” said TDRA interim executive director Howard G. Baldwin, Jr. “Local leaders are to be commended for their success in completing their work ahead of schedule.” The new improvements will reduce fl ooding in the area and 300 people in the area will benefi t from the improvements. County work While the City of Point Blank has completed its recovery program work, San Jacinto County is still waiting to begin work on a grant totaling more than $9.1 million on county road improvements, generators and a community shelter center. The grant is also funded from the Texas Department of Rural Affairs disaster recovery program. San Jacinto County Judge Fritz Faulkner said he was advised on March 3 that environmental clearance required by the federal government on the projects was four to six weeks away. “We expect to start on some projects as early as May. Surveys on road projects have been done and we’re waiting on the environmental studies and completion of paperwork from the government,” Faulkner said. “Specifi cations have already been presented to the state for the generators.” Of the $9.1 million in grant money the county is to receive, more than $6 million ($6,093,780) is for road improvements; $931,500 is for generators and more than $1 million ($1,013,561) is for a community center/shelter which is to be constructed across from the county courthouse. County roads that are to be upgraded with the money include Jenkins Road from the west branch of the San Jacinto River to the east branch of the San Jacinto River; Guinea Road, from the intersection of FM 3018 to about 1,400 linear feet south; Tony Tap Road, from FM 1725 to about 1,000 linear feet to the northeast; Wilderness Road Bridge at McGee Creek; Willow Springs Road, from 635 linear feet west of Wheat Branch Creek to 690 linear feet east of Wheat Branch Creek; Shraderville Road, from the intersection of FM 723 to about 120 feet east; Shell Oil Road, from the intersection of FM 1725 northeast about 5,700 feet, southeast of Oak Grove; Dabney Bottom Road, about 2,100 feet within the Winter Creek area; Lower Vann Road, from the San Jacinto Bridge to McAdams Vann Road; Red Road, from the intersection of U.S. Hwy. 59 west about 12,500 feet south of Shepherd; Regency Drive, from the intersection of U.S. Hwy. 59 to Forest Cove Lane, south of Shepherd; Wright Boulevard Bridge replacement, from FM 223 at Coley Creek to about 1.5 miles south, east of Shepherd. Water companies in the county that will receive generators as a result of the disaster recovery program include 150 Water Service Plant; Mercy Water Supply plant; 150 Water Supply Water Well #4; Mercy Water Service Well #1; Camilla Water Supply #1; Dodge-Oakhurst Water Supply Well #2; Point Blank and Stevens Creek Water Supply well #3; Point Blank and Stevens Creek Water Supply well #4; Riverside Lakeside Village Plant; Waterwood MUD well plant; and San Jacinto Water Supply plant. “Installation of the backup generators will ensure continuous operation of the water plants and water wells and provide uninterrupted water service,” Judge Faulkner said. “These activities will benefit more than 15,390 persons of which 51 percent are of low to moderate income,” Faulkner added. The neighborhood shelter/ community center is expected to be about 10,000 square feet when completed and will be located across the street from the county courthouse. TDRA’s Disaster Recovery Program is supplying funding for more than 2,200 individual construction sites in 62 counties from East Texas to the Rio Grande Valley. Projects include flood control, road repairs and water system rehabilitation, as well as more than 800 emergency generators at shelters, water/wastewater facilities, and emergency management and medical facilities. TDRA has oversight of HUD disaster recovery funding for the non-housing portion of the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) disaster recovery funds. The federal funds distributed by the state and TDRA follow mandated strict federal guidelines and requirements. For more information, visit TDRA online at www.tdra.texas. gov.