Friday, September 29, 2023 Sep 29, 2023
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What Some Readers Think of Dredging White Rock Lake

I asked the question in the city's finest weekly newsletter, D Brief. I got some responses.
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Our Tim Rogers is definitely local media’s most stubborn supporter for dredging White Rock Lake. (Hate it or love it? Let us know in the comments.) In my Sunday newsletter—subscribe to D Brief right here, folks, it’s great every week and it’s about to be redesigned, so it’ll be even better—I bundled up Councilwoman Paula Blackmon’s motion to get $100,000 out of a fund controlled by the Park Board to pay for a feasibility study of dredging the thing. I also mentioned Tim’s tongue-in-cheek (I assume) proposal to put a bar on a silt island in the middle of the lake and get Mark Cuban to pay for it. He would call it Cuban island. (Cuban has not responded. I’ll put it here if he does.)

Anyway. Got some interesting takes from our readers. Let’s group a few. And special shout-out to Mike B., who’s trying to save some money and get paid.

Jeff F. 

I, and I know many others, would love to see a permanent solution by not only dredging the lake but also creating a filtration system where the water enters the lake from White Rock creek to stop (or severely limit) silt from continuing to enter the lake going forward.  This would require an engineered solution and ongoing removal of silt from this filtration location but it seems worth the expense (if reasonable) given dredging will have to occur indefinitely going forward and has already occurred multiple times in the past.
I also think thought should be given to addressing the sources of silt and polluted water upstream and have communities who are contributing to the silt build up share in the clean up and maintenance cost.  Its a shame how little respect we seem to have for our waterways in this country. 

I’d also love to find out why more money needs to be spent on feasibility studies if all they’re going to do is dredge the lake like the did last time when they already spent $1 million plus on previous studies (so I’ve heard, I don’t have a source and could be wrong).
In my opinion, White Rock Lake is one of Dallas’s best natural assets worth significant investment to protect both now and going forward.

Wanda H. 

In my opinion, Dallas has plenty of bars in such unique places – please don’t mess up the lake with an island bar. Just my thinking. I know economics will prevail… but that would not be a venue I’d want there.

Nancy S. 

I’m a native of Dallas, but have lived away most of my adult life. Still, Dallas tugs at my heart. To protect White Rock Lake, you might consider constructing a sediment forebay after the dredging. We’ve done that for our (much smaller) lake in Chapel Hill, NC. But it’s a private lake, and everyone on the plat had to pay for dredging more frequently than we liked, which led us to create the sediment forebay. It helps capture sediment from upstream development as well as storm debris.
Mike B. 
$100,000 for a feasibility study? Are you kidding me? To see what part of it is feasible? I just went and did a search on for “companies that dredge lakes” and literally 15 came up that that’s ALL they do! So yes, it’s feasible and multiple companies do it for a living!  There’s your feasibility study Paula, and I just saved the city $100,000. You can write me a check for $20,000 for doing your feasibility study. Thank you!
Jim S. 
If Tim’s island is built in the middle for a bar, don’t dredge the lake. People can wade out to the bar. 😊

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