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Lake Wichita Finishes Application For Permit To Dredge

Posted on October 18, 2016

By Jack Carney, Newschannel6

The Lake Wichita Revitalization Project will soon be one step closer to becoming a reality after Friday. The Lake Wichita Revitalization Committee will hand deliver a Clean Water Act Section 404 permit to the US Army Corps of Engineers in Tulsa. While the lake itself is owned by the city of Wichita Falls the US Army Corps of Engineers in Tulsa has jurisdiction over the Lake Wichita waters.

“This is the first step towards doing any improvements to the lake,” said Jack Murphy head of Wichita Falls Parks and Recreation.

Murphy said the application funding cost somewhere around $316,000 with the money coming from donations and Wichita Falls 4 B Sales Tax Corp.

“The 404 permit is what the Corps of engineers deemed necessary to excavate the lake bottom,” said Steve Garner Chairmen of the LWRC.

Over the last year the city partnered with Carollo Engineers to complete multiple studies to look at the impact their proposed project would have on the lake and the natural environment in and around the water.

“The studies involved in this thing we so much more extensive than anything I had thought about. I mean there were environmental studies of the watershed we had to look at and make sure that the project took care of and that we were good stewards of nature that is on the back end of Lake Wichita,” said Garner.

Over the last two years Garner and others in the LWRC have worked with the US Army Corps of Engineers in Tulsa to make sure they had everything perfectly prepared and packaged for the 404 permit. The application process can take as long as 12-18 months but both Garner and Murphy are confident that the amount of detail and work put into the 404 permit application process could help speed up that process. Garner said ideally it would be approved sometime within 90-120 days.

“Anytime that you are doing a project that’s got such ramifications for the environment for the community it us takes a while for the red tape to get taken care of,” said Garner.

Source: Newschannel6

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