Lake Ralph Hall Project FAQs
Q: When will construction begin and when will the project be completed?
A: Construction of the new lake is anticipated to begin in early 2021 with water delivery expected by 2025.
Q: Why is the lake being built, and who is building it?
A: The North Texas region, which includes Denton and Collin Counties, is one of the fastest growing regions in the nation. The lake will provide essential water for an area whose population is projected to increase nearly fivefold in the next 50 years. The project is being built by the Upper Trinity Regional Water District, which serves 29 communities in Denton and Collin Counties.
Q: Who will receive water from Lake Ralph Hall?
A: Lake Ralph Hall will provide 35 million gallons daily (MGD) of raw water and 19 MGD of reuse water for residents and businesses in Denton and Collin counties, as well as a portion of Fannin county.
Q: What is the cost of the project?
A: The estimated cost is approximately $490 million, which includes planning, permitting, purchasing land, designing and construction. The Texas Water Development Board’s State Water Implementation Fund for Texas (SWIFT) program will be used to help finance the project.
Q: What are the project components?
A: Components include:
A dam, spillway and lake intake
32 miles of untreated water pipeline and balancing reservoir
Roadway relocations/improvements and a new lake bridge
Lake office and maintenance facilities
Environmental improvements in specific areas around the lake
Q: What will happen to the Ladonia Fossil Park?
A: The fossil park will be relocated to a new downstream location that is to be determined. UTRWD is working with experts to help plan and implement the relocation. During construction of the new lake, the Fossil Park will be temporarily relocated on the east side of FM 2990 and on the north side of the North Sulphur River.
Q: Will water from Lake Ralph Hall be available to local residents?
A: Water from Lake Ralph Hall will be available for local use within the Sulphur River Basin in Fannin County.
Q: What are the impacts of construction?
A: Safety is our number one priority during construction, and we will work with the local community to minimize any impacts that may exist. The work will not have major impacts on local residents. Work will include roadway relocations and improvements as well as the construction of a new lake bridge.
Q: What are the environmental impacts of this project and planned environmental improvements?
A: The reservoir site is on a portion of the North Sulphur River that has experienced extensive erosion since the river channel was altered in the 1920s - going from 16 feet wide by 10 feet deep to approximate 300 feet wide and 60 feet deep. This is over 20 times its original size. Hundreds of acres of valuable land/soil, trees and wildlife habitat have been lost to this erosion.
Lake Ralph Hall's mitigation components will actually help reduce the impact of the continued erosion and restore portions of the original river channel to its beautiful and natural, meandering path. Environmental mitigation will occur in specific areas around the lake, including restoring portions of the original river channel.
Q: What are the economic benefits of this project?
A: Not only will the lake keep the economy of the region strong by avoiding water shortages, it will bring billions of dollars in economic benefits to Fannin, Denton, Dallas, and Collin Counties. It will be a stimulus to the region, especially to Ladonia, which will benefit from a large lake nearby providing recreational uses, such as fishing and boating, in the city’s backyard. This project has the support of more than 35 local organizations including cities, water districts, chambers of commerce and citizen groups.