This project aims to reduce the frequency and magnitude of flooding from the Paces Mill drainage channel. It will help homes along Paces Mill Lane in the Yarrabee Bend South neighborhood in southeast Austin.

Project Background

Homes in the neighborhood have flooded on at least two occasions, October 30, 2015, and May 26, 2016. Currently, there are 15 homes which are expected to be flooding in a 100-year flooding event.

Community Engagement 

We hosted public Meeting in the Neighborhood to discuss the viable alternatives to reduce flood risk in the neighborhood. After sharing the alternatives, we asked for feedback from community members by filling out a survey about what was discussed and how they feel about the choices. If you were unable to attend the meeting, we have a short video of the presentation below. You can participate in the survey at We ask all those interested in participating in the survey to complete it by May 31.

Project Update

Project Location 

The project is northwest of the intersection of Thaxton Road and Salt Springs Drive. The project will focus on the drainage channel behind the homes on Paces Mill Lane.   

Paces mill map

Project Summary

We recently completed a preliminary engineering report (PER) which investigated 13 alternatives to reduce the impacts of flooding for the neighborhood.  The alternatives were investigated for effectiveness in reducing flood risk, impacts to the environment, and the short term and long-term impacts to the neighborhood. Of the alternatives investigated, both structural channel improvements and a voluntary buyout program were identified as viable alternatives to improve flood safety in the neighborhood.  

Project Solutions Under Consideration

Channel Improvements 

For this alternative, the City would improve the existing drainage infrastructure in the neighborhood through a construction project.  The City would work with a local engineering consultant to develop construction plans and specifications for the project.  After the completion of the plans and specifications, the City would hire a contractor through a bidding process to construct the project.  Construction activities would be managed and inspected by City staff to ensure constructed infrastructure meets required standards and gathered community input. 

  • Removes 100-year flood risk to all 15 homes 
  • Increases capacity of existing channel 
  • Promotes ecological diversity 
  • Impacts large, established trees in project area 
  • Yard and Street flooding may continue to be an issue on Paces Mill Ln 
  • May take 3-4 years before construction begins  
  • Note: Referred to as Hybrid Channel option in PER 

Optional Buyouts 

The City purchases homes when other structural or maintenance solutions are infeasible, ineffective, or unjustifiably costly. Offers would be for the fair market value of the house as determined by an independent appraisal and would be optional. 

  • Quickest solution – 1 year timeframe for 1st round of offers 
  • Flood risk is eliminated completely for the resident/owner/City 
  • This solution only helps residents that accept the buyout offer 
  • Structures purchased would be demolished and properties converted parkland


paces mill flood

Picture 1: Northern portion of the Paces Mill drainage channel.


Southern portion of the Paces Mill drainage channel.

Picture 2: Southern portion of the Paces Mill drainage channel.

Status and Timeline

Our capital improvement process includes the following phases: 

  • Preliminary Engineering – when a solution is identified and costs are estimated. 
  • Design – when the details are worked out and construction plans drawn up. 
  • Permitting and Bidding – when all permits are acquired and a contractor is hired. 
  • Construction – when the project is built. 

We completed the Preliminary Engineering phase in 2022 and are currently gathering public input.

Project Contacts 

If you have any questions or would like to be added to the contact list for this project, please contact Fredrick Reza, Project Manager, at 512-974-7204 or email Fredrick.  

You may also direct your questions to Henry Price, Project Sponsor, at (512) 974-1275 or email


Paces Mill Flood Risk Reduction Preliminary Engineering Report