NoVEMBER 2, 2023
LAKE DUNLAP HYDROELECTRIC OPERATIONS RESUME
GBRA is thrilled to see the return of a full Lake Dunlap and to be able to again provide hydroelectric power from Dunlap Dam after 4.5 years of being offline. Along with resuming safe hydroelectric operations at Dunlap Dam, the streamflow immediately below the dam has returned to lower flow conditions.
The stream section below the dam has been experiencing higher flows since 2019 because the damage to the spillgates and the subsequent construction activities created a temporary condition where all of the river flows passed through the dam. Current flows in and around Lake Dunlap are consistent with operations authorized for nearly a century.
Generation of hydroelectric power is an important component of the effort to restore the lake, as GBRA has committed all gross revenue from power sales to the Dunlap WCID to help them pay for the $40 million effort to rehabilitate Dunlap Dam. GBRA looks forward to continuing its work with Lake Dunlap WCID to support safe, compliant, and long-term operations at Lake Dunlap.s
OCTOBER 31, 2023
LAKE DUNLAP CONSTRUCTION REACHES MAJOR MILESTONE
NEW BRAUNFELS – The Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA) and the Lake Dunlap Water Control and Improvement District (WCID) are pleased to announce that the project to restore Lake Dunlap dam has reached a major milestone. Lake Dunlap has now reached its full capacity, with a lake level of approximately 12-feet at the dam, and the hydroelectric operations are being placed back into service.
“This major milestone is a testament to the unwavering commitment of the Lake Dunlap community, the Preserve Lake Dunlap Association, and the support of GBRA,” said Lake Dunlap WCID President Doug Harrison. “We are grateful to every individual who played a part in this transformative journey. Our collective efforts have not only restored Lake Dunlap, but have strengthened the bonds of our community.”
The rehabilitation project includes the installation of three hydraulically-actuated steel crest gates, structural modifications to the spillway, and upgrades to the mechanical, electrical and safety systems. Bonds issued through the Texas Water Development Board’s Clean Water State Revolving Fund program provided the funding for the project.
“This milestone is a reflection of our commitment to working in partnership with the communities we serve,” said GBRA General Manager and CEO Darrell Nichols. “This project showcases the power of collaboration and determination and has paved the way for similar projects now underway at Lake McQueeney and Lake Placid.”
The Lake Dunlap WCID will manage the debt service on the bonds as well as future maintenance and operational costs of the dam, with GBRA continuing to own, operate, and contribute all gross revenues from the sale of hydroelectric power generated by the Lake Dunlap dam back to the WCID.
An official grand re-opening celebration is planned for March 2024.
JUNE 19, 2023
CONSTRUCTION BEGINS ON LAKE McQUEENEY AND LAKE PLACID DAMS
Construction to replace the dams at Lake McQueeney and Lake Placid is underway, with the Guadalupe-Blanco River Authority (GBRA) issuing the formal notice to proceed effective Monday, June 19, 2023. The estimated timeline for completion is 22 months for Lake Placid and 24 months for Lake McQueeney, pending unforeseen weather delays.
APRIL 19, 2023
PROHIBITED AND RESTRICTED UNSAFE ZONES UPDATED
The prohibited and restricted unsafe zones on the Guadalupe Valley Lakes have been lifted. These zones were put in place by GBRA Ordinances in 2019 and 2020 as a result of safety concerns related to the aging spillgates and in accordance with a temporary injunction. With the temporary injunction dissolved by Court order and the spillgates no longer in operation, the GBRA Board of Directors repealed those Ordinances on April 19, 2023.
While the lowering of the spillgates at Lake McQueeney and Meadow Lake mitigates the risk of a spillgate failure, it is important to maintain a safe distance from the dams at all times. The pre-existing restrictions and restricted areas extending 400 feet upstream and downstream of all six Guadalupe Valley Lakes dams remain in effect. These restricted areas pose potential hazardous conditions due to water flowing through the dams and on-site construction activities.
While access and recreation is permitted along the river, all watercraft and personal watercraft are prohibited within the previously established restricted areas. This regulation does not impact the ability to access an existing dock or pier within the restricted area.
GBRA will continue to work with each lake association and WCID to assess, revise and update any current or future ordinances related to the Guadalupe Valley Lakes.
LAKE DUNLAP CONSTRUCTION UPDATE
Progress is being made on the Lake Dunlap dam project. Construction began in May 2021 with an estimated completion timeline of 24 months pending unforeseen weather delays.
Safety is our top priority
Please remember to exercise caution when enjoying the Guadalupe Valley Lakes. Be aware of changing river conditions and maintain a safe distance from the dams at all times.
View Restrictions in Your Area
Click the map below to input your address and familiarize yourself with the restrictions in your area before going out on and around the water. Please adhere to all posted guidelines and safety measures and report any violations of these guidelines to local authorities.
Who Do I Contact?
GBRA continues to work closely with the community toward the common goal of ensuring the longevity of the Guadalupe Valley Lakes. GBRA has financing and operation agreements in place with the voter-approved WCIDs for Lake Dunlap, Lake McQueeney, and Lake Placid, and continues to meet with lake associations. If you have a WCID and/or lake association, we encourage you to get involved with them as they are the best point of contact and source of information to ask questions and provide input about your specific lake.