West Dallas Breaks Ground on $350 Million Pump Station to Prevent Flooding
Residents of West Dallas are hopeful that severe flooding in their neighborhoods may soon come to an end as the city has broken ground on a $350 million pump station on Thursday. The Trinity Portland Pump Station, a partnership between the City of Dallas and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, is expected to keep the water out during severe weather events.
The pump station’s groundbreaking ceremony is a relief for 62-year-old Debbie Orozzo Solis, a third-generation West Dallas resident. She has lived through major flood events since childhood, including the voluntary evacuation of 2015, the floods of 2010, and the rising waters of 2012.
The pump station’s construction will take place at the end of a cul-de-sac, along West Levee and Mexicana Road. West Dallas Mayor Pro Tem Omar Narvaez said residents call him during rain events as they’re scared after living through past floods. Narvaez said the groundbreaking has been long-awaited and believes the project is critical for the area’s flood risk management.
The Trinity Portland Pump Station is part of the Dallas Floodway Project, which began in the 1990s, and the $350 million project will allow the new pump station to pump around 250,000 gallons of floodwater per minute. Sarah Standifer, a City of Dallas Storm Water Management representative, said the city has maintained a partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers since the 1920s, with the project expected to be completed by late 2025.
Residents of West Dallas have become so accustomed to flooding that they have learned how to act quickly during severe weather. Many of them have prepared action plans by knowing when and where to go, sometimes seeking assistance from the city’s crews during rain conditions on watch.
Solis noted the economic impact of the new pump station, stating her neighbors need support as most cannot afford flood insurance. She is also part of a neighborhood coalition and serves as an advocate for West Dallas, a place she calls home. According to her, they want to provide residents with better living standards and deserve to live without the fear of flooding.
Apart from the new pump station, the Dallas Floodway project also includes enhancing levees, flattening them and rehabilitating the Delta Pump Station, which was built in the 1930s, and serves West Dallas.