The first major reservoir in Texas in nearly three decades is now taking on water.
The North Texas Municipal Water District began impounding, or capturing, water on the 16,641-acre lake Wednesday, the district announced.
The lake is being built in rural Fannin County, northeast of the town of Bonham, which is approximately 35 miles northeast of McKinney.
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"We are excited to reach this major milestone that brings us one step closer to additional water supplies for the growing population NTMWD serves," Rodney Rhoades, NTMWD Interim Executive Director, stated in a news release. "Bois d'Arc Lake will be a reliable water source for generations and will also provide economic and recreational benefits to Fannin County."
NBC 5 reported in 2019 how the projected population surge in the region – specifically within the service area of the NTMWD – has necessitated the construction of Bois d’Arc Lake. It is expected to meet the drinking water needs of approximately 1.7 million people through the year 2040.
The lake will cover more than 16,000 acres -- more than twice the size of Joe Pool Lake and about half the size of Lake Lewisville.
NTMWD says it will continue to release water from the lake in order to keep water flowing downstream in Bois d'Arc Creek.
Construction began in May 2018 and will be ongoing at the dam area through the end of the year, the district says. The NTMWD expects to start drawing drinking water from the lake by 2022.
Work continues on other components of the project, including the raw water pump station, lake operations center, water treatment plant in Leonard, and pipelines between the lake, Leonard and the regional water system distribution point in McKinney.
Last year, workers completed and opened 11 miles of county and state roads, including 6.2 miles of FM 897 and its accompanying bridge.