Arroyo Colorado

July 1, 2008

Hola Arroyo Partners,

Thanks to all of you who voted on final design for the Arroyo Colorado Watershed boundary roadway sign. Again, the signs are intended to raise watershed awareness, a strategy successful in other areas across the state. Option 4 (attached) received 59% of the votes with option 2 coming in second with 21% of the votes. We will now proceed with the production and installations of these signs using design number 4. Thanks again for the votes and general comments on the project!

Two Coastal Management Program pre-proposals were submitted last week; one titled “A wetland education and outreach center in Rio Hondo, Texas” and the other, “Enhancing water quality and dredge materials at the Port of Harlingen.” Both proposals are phased approaches to wetland development beginning with ecological and hydrological site assessments, conceptual plans, and the beginning of coordinating necessary permits. Both are promising projects in many respects.

The goal of the Rio Hondo project is to provide residents and visitors with additional recreational and educational opportunities in conjunction with the construction of a wetland, fishing dock, and paths lined with educational signage.

The Port of Harlingen project proposes to construct a 35-acre wetland that includes sediment basins and wetlands designed and built to protect and enhance critical habitat, remove nutrients from flow at the turning basin and provide a means to continually dredge sediments and treat water at the Port. This project holds great potential for water quality improvement as sediments generally carry contaminants such as nutrients. Sediments removed from the turning basin would be treated and harvested, thereby reducing pollution from the water at the beginning of the zone of impairment (the stretch of the Arroyo Colorado where there is greatest incident of low dissolved oxygen/fishkills).

On a final note, a group of Arroyo Partners are working on a luncheon targeting Valley ecotourism vendors. The goal of this event is to increase awareness of a group that depends on a healthy environment for earning a living, and garner additional support of our efforts to improve the quality of water in the Arroyo Colorado and Lower Laguna Madre. The Arroyo Colorado Luncheon is scheduled for August 7, 2008. More information on this event will be sent later...

Up coming meetings:

Stay cool,

Laura