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City addresses drought concerns, as vision for more water amenities move forward

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Posted at 6:44 PM, Apr 18, 2023
and last updated 2023-04-18 19:44:35-04

CORPUS CHRISTI — After Tuesday's rainfall it could be easy to forget about the drought. However, that's at the top of the minds for some people like Rachel Caballero.

At last week's Corpus Christi City Council meeting, she spoke up during public comment with concerns regarding the city's plan to build water focused amenities. She referred to plans to build the Bill Witt Aquatic Center on the city's South Side and plans to add a splash pad to Cole Park.

"We are under a drought, Stage One contingency. You guys are out here week after week telling us we are running out of water. Telling us week after week, putting out ordinance and fines into place, but you guys are about to open up an aquatic center and splash pad that requires water," Caballero said during public comment. "Either we're getting lied to about the true position of the drought or we need to reevaluate IQ on this council."

KRIS 6 News spoke with City Manager Peter Zanoni who addressed the concerns. He said the city currently has four splash pads. The one at Cole Park is expected to operate like the others, using a water recycle system.

"There will be some loss obviously from evaporation, but those splash pads have a chlorinating system and a recycling system to be environmentally conscious. We know we're in a drought prone area so we want to be mindful of that," he added.

As for the Bill Witt Aquatic Center, Zanoni said the pools are expected to be treated like residential pools. Once the pools are filled with water, it requires weekly maintenance and monitoring of its water levels.

During the interview, he also referred to the city's drought and water contingency plans, saying the city is working on finding solutions to mitigate the current water situation.

As reported, water restrictions are based on the combined capacity of Lake Corpus Christi and Choke Canyon Reservoir. As of Tuesday, the level was at 40.2 percent. Water restrictions could be lifted if that number reaches 50 percent.

For more information on the city's water restrictions and contingency plan, click here.