The City of Wichita Falls is once again considering construction of a new reservoir in Clay County.
On Monday, the Wichita Falls City Council elected to move forward with a feasibility study for water supply sources. The study will concentrate on a 5,000-acre tract of land located north of Henrietta already owned by the city for construction of the proposed Ringgold Lake reservoir.
The council approved an engineering services agreement at a cost of $357,500, said Kevin Hugman, assistant city manager for Wichita Falls.
Hugman described the study as a long-term project that will take several years to complete. If construction of the reservoir is determined to be feasible, the City of Wichita Falls will have to apply for permits from the state, which would take “many years,” said Hugman.
The tract already owned by the city is only a portion of the land needed to construct a reservoir at that location. The Lake Arrowhead reservoir, which is owned by Wichita Falls, covers approximately 16,200 surface acres.
The City of Wichita Falls has considered construction of a reservoir at the “Ringgold” site for more than 50 years. It was the first choice for a new city reservoir prior to the construction of Lake Arrowhead in 1965, but was abandoned in favor of the site southwest of Henrietta.
The city of Wichita Falls purchased the tract of land from the Boddy family in 1985, and has since leased the land to Boddy Ranch for agricultural use.
In November 2008, the City of Wichita Falls considered selling the 5,000-tract. In its agreement to sell the land to the city, the Boddy family retained first rights of refusal, guaranteeing the ranch an opportunity to buy back the property.