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Texas Historical Commission
Atmos Energy Corporation (Atmos) contracted Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company, Inc. (Burns & McDonnell) to perform a records review and archaeological monitoring for the Hero Way Relocation Project (Project), a natural gas pipeline relocation and replacement project in the city of Leander, Williamson County, Texas (Appendix A: Figure A-1). The following report provides information regarding the proposed Project and includes the results of the cultural resources background review and the results of the archaeological monitoring. The report is presented in the short report format developed by the Council of Texas Archaeologists (CTA) for small projects with no findings (CTA, 2015)
Atmos Energy Corporation (Atmos) is proposing to replace and relocate 10 segments, totaling approximately 0.25 miles (0.40 kilometers [km]) of an existing 1.25 mile (2 km)-long natural gas distribution line in northern Leander, Texas (Project Area; Appendix A: Figure A-2). The proposed rightof-way (ROW) for the Project is 25 feet wide (7.62 m) and the expected impact area totals 0.77 acres. Construction activities will include the installation of 8-inch poly main line and other related improvements that will require both open-cut and boring methods with expected disturbances to reach a maximum depth of 8 feet (2.43 m) below surface
No Federal funding, licensing, or permitting is required for the Project; therefore, Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act does not currently apply to the project. However, the Project impacts are located within publicly owned ROW paralleling Hero Way (Old Farm to Market 2243), and because the ROW is owned by a political subdivision of the State (the city of Leander), the Antiquities Code of Texas applies for this Project. Additionally, six of the ten proposed relocation segments, totaling approximately 900 ft (274 m), are located within the boundaries of 41WM269, a National Register of Historic Places (NRHP)-eligible archaeological site also known as the historic settlement of Bagdad. Furthermore, four of these six proposed relocation segments (approximately 132 ft [40 m]) are within 25 ft (7.62 m) of the Bagdad Cemetery (also a part of 41WM269; Figure A-3 and A-4). Consultation with the Texas Historical Commission (THC) determined that the majority of the Project has been subject to previous investigations, and as such, the THC recommended that only the four proposed impact areas adjacent to the Bagdad Cemetery required archaeological monitoring to decrease the potential for disturbing unmarked burials that may be located outside of present day cemetery boundaries.
Burns & McDonnell archaeologists performed a background review for the entire Project Area prior to initiating fieldwork. Burns & McDonnell archaeologists monitored excavations in the four proposed impact areas adjacent to the Bagdad Cemetery between September 16, 2015, and October 12, 2015, under
TAC Permit 7399 (Appendix B). No unmarked burials or additional cultural resources were located adjacent to Bagdad Cemetery within the Project ROW. The following report provides the results of the background review and archaeological monitoring for this section of the Project.
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