Sebastian residents may have finally found a solution for an issue that has plagued their community for years.
“It is something that has needed to be corrected for decades,” says Willacy County Judge John F. Gonzales Jr.
Flooding has been a problem that most Sebastian citizens know all too well.
“It can get really bad and the stench is worse,” says Sebastian resident Leonor Garza.
The community has consistently experienced severe flooding thanks largely in part to an outdated and inefficient drainage system. That problem may soon be solved after county leaders recently announced plans to update Sebastian’s drainage system.
One of the first steps of the project will be to increase the size of the drainage pipes from 12 inches to 24 inches.
These upgrades are just the first part of a three-tiered project meant to prevent Sebastian from future floods. Residents can expect to see the first phase completed in the next sixty days.
“It means a lot to the people,” says Judge Gonzales. “Just think of you having a home and every time there is six inches of rain in a three or four hour period. You have water inside your home and the water is there for three or four days.”
Leonor Garza says the upgrades are especially important to her because the consistent flooding poses a threat to her young daughter.
“Walking around Sebastian with her and having her smell the water would be really bad,” says Garza. “The new draining system would be really good for Sebastian itself.”
Judge Gonzales says the project has required plenty of effort but the positive impact will be worth the wait.
“After the nine months of hard work that has come to fruition it feels really good to go and do something to help my people and the people who have needed help for a long time in our county.”
According to Gonzales, the final two steps to upgrade Sebastian’s drainage system will be phased in over the next few months. The total cost of all three upgrades will cost more than two million dollars.