HIDALGO COUNTY, Texas (ValleyCentral) — A $12.5 million disaster recovery fund approved by the Texas General Land Office is being allocated to infrastructure projects in the Rio Grande Valley.

The funds will be put into 13 federally eligible infrastructure projects to help Texas communities recover from the 2018 South Texas Floods.

According to a release sent by Texas Land Commissioner Dawn Buckingham, the funds will be used to improve streets as well as water and drainage facilities in the cities of Alamo, Alton, Combes, Donna, Edinburg, La Feria, La Villa, Mercedes, Mission, Palmview, Progreso, Rio Hondo and Hidalgo County.

“Severe flooding in 2018 inundated drainage systems, roads and infrastructure throughout the Lower Rio Grande Valley,” Buckingham said. “The GLO is committed to serving the people who need it most, and not only rebuilding communities, but also helping them grow and thrive. These infrastructure projects will long serve the entire Rio Grande Valley and strengthen and fortify the region against future flooding.”

Ten of the cities will receive $1 million for drainage, sewer and stormwater improvements.

The City of Alamo will receive $973,285 for flood improvements in the Duranta Avenue area including the construction of a 2.50-acre detention pond, new inlet installations, installing 1,400 linear feet of 24-inch pipe and installing 1500 linear feet of 18-inch pipe.

Alton will receive $1 million to provide pavement and drainage improvements to an area that spans eastward and westward of the intersection of Mayberry Boulevard and East St. Jude (6 Mile Road). The project includes the grading of roadside swales, installing driveway and roadway culverts, upgrading the stormwater systems with area inlets and reinforced concrete pipe, and reconstructing existing asphalt roadways.

In 2018 the City of Combes’s sewer system was damaged by the flood. With the garnered $1 million from the GLO, the city will make improvements to the damaged sewer system by reducing excess inflow and infiltration from existing lift stations located throughout the city.

With the $1 million allocated to the City of Donna, crews will work to five individual and affixed emergency backup pumps at five individual lift stations located strategically throughout the city to enhance sanitary sewer efforts in the event of loss of power. 

In Edinburg, the $1 million will be used to get to work on the Chapin Pumps Rehabilitation Drainage Improvements Project which involves the design and installation of new pumps, and the rehabilitation of the existing pump station and gates. The aim of the project is to mitigate flooding within the service area by discharging floodwaters to the nearby Chapin Pond.

Hidalgo County will use its $1 million to provide regional stormwater management to the City of Palmview by enhancing the city’s primary drainage outfall. 

La Feria will also work to make drainage improvements with its allocated $1 million by installing new reinforced concrete pipe, concrete lining, widening the drainage channel and working on culvert rehabilitation. 

The $1 million allocated toward La Villa will help the city by nearly doubling the system’s capacity and augmenting the system’s ability to safely manage stormwater for residences and businesses.

The City of Mercedes will make drainage improvements with its $1 million by increasing the amount of rainfall flowing through the IBWC levee, reducing the likelihood of flooding, and improving flow capacity and outfall for the South Mercedes Latera.

Drainage improvements will also be made to the City of Mission with its allocated $997,236. This project will excavate, clear, and establish embankments as well as other related activities to create a four-acre detention pond to improve drainage in the area.

The City of Palmview will be allocated the least amount of money, with $540,475.61. The city will work on drainage improvements by installing storm inlets at the end of each cul-de-sac. 

Progresso will also be making drainage upgrades with its $1 million by making a series of improvements that will create regional flood control for the city.

In Rio Hondo, the $1 million will be allocated toward the existing drainage system in the area which is insufficient in both sizing and capacity to manage stormwater.