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Archeological Survey For The Austin Industries Proposed Parking Lot Expansion At East Union Bower Road (SWF-2019-00383), Irving, Dallas County, Texas
Texas Historical Commission
On December 12, 2019, an intensive archeological survey augmented with shovel testing was completed to evaluate potential impacts associated with the proposed construction of a parking lot expansion in east central Irving in Dallas County, Texas. The overall grade of the area would be converted to a consistent slope toward the unnamed tributary to the Elm Fork of the Trinity River near the center of the parcel and more steeply sloped along the eastern portion of the parcel. Approximately 6.5 acres (2.6 hectares) were examined and shovel tested.
The proposed parking lot parcel is undeveloped, heavily vegetated, and surrounded by industrial buildings and parking lots in an urban industrial setting. From East Union Bower Road, the parcel’s main access point is located along an alley and utility corridor on the west side of the Austin Industries equipment yard. An existing sewer line runs along the alley/utility corridor from East Union Bower Road and north of the unnamed drainage that runs southeast across the north part of the parcel. This drainage eventually drains into the Elm Fork of the Trinity River approximately 2,000 feet (609 meters) southeast of the parcel. Other than the buried sewer line and utilities corridor, the parcel has not been utilized, but commercial development of the general area is rapidly encroaching into the area.
Brett Lang (Project Archeologist) of Cox|McLain Environmental Consulting, Inc. carried out the survey in support of a Clean Water Act Section 404 Permit (SWF-2019-00383, Commercial Development Bower Road) for the United States Corps of Engineers, Fort Worth District. The project was subject to Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended. However, a Texas Antiquities Permit was not required for this project. Melissa Green served as Principal Investigator.
Based on background review of available data, the potential for intact archeological deposits was considered low for both prehistoric and historic sites within the archeological area of potential effects (APE) due to previous disturbances. Ground surface visibility varied between 0 and 30 percent across the parcel. Four shovel test units were excavated to examine the potential for subsurface archeological deposits in areas around an unnamed tributary of the Elm Fork Trinity River, none of which contained archeological materials. No evidence of historic or prehistoric deposits, materials, or features were identified, and no further work is recommended within the 6.5-acre (2.6-hectare) APE.
In addition, there are no extant historic-age buildings or structures and no National Register of Historic Places- (NRHP) or State Antiquities Landmark-eligible (SAL) archeological resources recorded within the 1-mile (1.6-kilometer) buffer around the APE, and no NRHP- or SAL-eligible archeological resources were found during the current survey. Therefore, the proposed project would not cause visual or indirect effects on any above-ground NRHP- or SAL-eligible cultural resources.
No artifacts were collected during the investigation however, all notes, photographs, administrative documents, and other project data will be made permanently available to future researchers at the Irving office of CMEC.
If any unanticipated cultural materials or deposits are found at any stage of clearing, preparation, or construction, the work should cease and Texas Historical Commission (THC) personnel should be notified immediately.
The THC concurred with the findings and recommendations of this report on February 5, 2020.
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