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Cultural Resources Reconnaissance-Level Survey of the LCRA–SAWS Water Project Colorado, Matagorda, and Wharton Counties, Texas
Texas Historical Commission
Atkins conducted a reconnaissance-level cultural resources survey and constraints analysis on behalf of the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) and the San Antonio Water System (SAWS). The LCRASAWS Water Project (LSWP) was a partnership aimed at developing a plan to provide a reliable water supply (up to 150,000 acre-feet/year) to San Antonio for 40 years, with an option for 30 additional years, and to provide a more reliable long-term water supply for the lower Colorado River basin while protecting and benefiting said river basin.
The purpose of this study was to assist LCRA and SAWS in their compliance with the Antiquities Code of Texas and Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) of 1966, as amended. The records review was performed by professional archeologists meeting the Secretary of the Interior standards and identified potential cultural resources that may be encountered by the proposed project. A reconnaissance-level survey was performed by archeologists and professional historians to verify the results of the records review and to identify any additional resources observed in the field. Participants included Clell Bond, Michael Nash, Meg Cruise, Wayne Glander, Tricia Blackistone, Sally Victor, and Robert Rogers. Atkins obtained Antiquities Permit No. 3797 in compliance with the Antiquities Code of Texas to conduct the survey. This permit was for an intensive survey; however, the project was cancelled before one occurred.
Because the exact size of the footprint of the potential infrastructure was never finalized, the archeological resources assessment initially focused on a study area spanning three counties. Eventually, the study area was narrowed to a handful of potential sites, but a final alignment or reservoir locations were never determined. The project shut down before the intensive survey began; therefore, the entire project area will need to be surveyed archeologically should the project resume in the future.
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