Restoring Streams & Connecting the Dam at Bois d’Arc

The Bois d’Arc Lake project has really taken shape this summer. For a project of such massive proportions, Bois d’Arc Lake is well on its way to meeting the goal of water delivery by spring of 2022.

The past several months have marked major progress on the lake and its water delivery system. Here’s what we’ve done so far:

  • Connecting different sections of the dam before crew members add the final 1.5 million cubic yards of earth.
  • More than 40 percent—that’s a little over 22 miles—of the untreated (raw) water pipeline has been laid. This pipeline carries water from the lake to our new treatment plant in Leonard. Crews are also digging tunnels and delivering the massive 25,000 lb., 50-foot-long pieces of pipe for the treated water pipeline to carry water from the treatment plant to the regional water system.
  • Pouring concrete for buildings across the site of future Leonard Water Treatment Plant. Workers are beginning to install interior treatment components as
  • Building three public boat ramps along the future lake shoreline—the concrete for the first one near FM 897 is already poured. Plus, construction crews are working on parking lots, restrooms and the Lake Operations Center, which is currently being roofed and sided.

If you look beyond the lake construction itself, you’ll also find new roads, streams and a forest!

More than six miles of new road including a 1.3-mile-long bridge have been built to provide access across Bois d’Arc Lake. In late August, the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) inspected the FM 897 road and bridge. Both are now open to traffic. Construction and/or improvements to a dozen county roads and bridges are also underway and will help with navigation around the lake.

We are also following through on our commitment to honor and restore the environment after the reservoir is completed. Our mitigation contractor RES has been hard at work. This spring they continued planting trees, adding more than 3 million of the total 5 million planned. This summer they’ve continued to restore/enhance 17,000 acres of land and improve more than 70 miles of streams.

At Willow Branch Creek—the largest stream restoration project planned—teams are making huge headway on numerous improvements, and not just to the waterway itself. By the end of August, crews will have finished:

  • 16+ miles of stream improvements
  • 18+ miles of new stream
  • 1,400 acres of improved wetlands
  • 4,900+ acres of new wetlands
  • 2,000+ acres of upland and riparian forest
  • 900 acres of restored native grassland

RES is aiming to wrap up environmental improvements by spring of 2023. Overall, our contractors and their crews have been very innovative and used successful coronavirus precautions to keep this project on schedule. For more information about the project and its current status, visit and sign up for the project’s monthly eNewsletter.