MIDLAND - It's a resource that those who live in West Texas have learned not to take for granted, we're talking about water. Now a pipeline that will pump water from the T-Bar Ranch to the Tall City is nearly complete, while this project is winding down, another is just getting started.
NewsWest 9 spoke to Midland Mayor Wes Perry who says the T-Bar Ranch Project in his opinion would give a 40 year water supply. However there are plans already being made to join forces with other cities to bring in more water, a supply that is estimated to last 100 years.
The water needs in Midland may finally be met as the T-bar Ranch project is coming to a close.
"This happened in a relatively short period of time, considering this is the largest project Midland has ever done," Midland Mayor, Wes Perry, said.
The 45 water well development is estimated to last 40 years according to the Mayor. Moving forward he says the city has been in talks with both Abilene and San Angelo, on a cooperative plan that would bring an abundance of water for the three cities and perhaps even others. It's called the West Texas Water Partnership.
"We've been able to go to Austin and talk about it, and really the basis is finding other geographical areas," Perry said.
Those areas includes lakes and underground supplies that would draw cities away from being dependent on rainwater alone.
"That we may build a lake North of Abilene that will supply water for 100 years in the future," Perry said.
That idea comes with a hefty price tag of over half a billion dollars. A cost that would be divided up among the three cities and it comes with tedious planning too. From consultants to legal issues, a project like this could span a 20 year time period.
"They're incredibly complicated processes from Federal and State and in local land owners. So all that takes a long period of time and just our forefathers did with T-Bar. They started that 50 years ago, it's exactly what we're doing today," Perry said.
Mayor Perry says residents may breathe a little easier now that the T-Bar Ranch project is becoming a reality.
"But the citizens, at the end of the day need to realize this is their assets and they need to be good stewardess with it. That's really the main message is we've been given this gift and we need to treat it as a gift and make sure it lasts for generations to come," Perry said.
Once the new water starts flowing, the Mayor says the two day a week water restrictions will probably still be in place. He believes conservation is still extremely important.
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