Akery Lake (formally Manvel Drainage Pond) is a joint effort between the City of Manvel, Brazoria County Conservation and Reclamation District #3 (C&R3), Brazoria Drainage District #4 (BDD4), and Brazoria Drainage District #5 (BDD5) to detain heavy rainfall and minimize catastrophic flooding along State Highway 6 (SH6). View the Akery Lake Rendering.
What is a Detention Pond?
A drainage pond, or "detention pond," is a constructed depression that receives and stores stormwater runoff from a specific drainage area. Akery Lake will provide many benefits to the City, including the reduction of ponding water on SH6 during extreme flooding events. The runoff that gathers in the Drainage Pond will be detained safely away from the highway and drain in its natural course through the C12 waterway to Chocolate Bayou.
The need for the drainage pond was highlighted in 2017 during Hurricane Harvey. During the Hurricane and for many days after, State Highway 6, a main thoroughfare through Manvel and a designated Hurricane Evacuation route, had been rendered impassable, leaving many Manvel residents stranded. While the City of Manvel suffered no loss of life and no serious destruction of property, the severity of the hurricane brought a pressing issue to light.
In 2020, with concerns for similar events in the future in mind, the City of Manvel began seeking solutions to flooding along SH6 and, later that year, purchased 117 acres of land near the intersection of Masters Road and Jordan Road. These 117 acres of land are strategically located in Flood Zone AO3 and share a southern boundary with the Gulf Coast Water Authority Canal which acts as a levee to back up water in the C12 waterway. The site also works in conjunction with Twin Lakes and Bluewater Lakes, which have approximately 24 and 15 acres of detention land, respectively.
After the purchase in 2021, the City selected Lentz Engineering, LLC to investigate, model, and design a drainage pond for the area that could assist with both detention and floodplain mitigation. Lentz completed the H&H Modeling and Construction Plans in late 2021, and in January 2022, the City of Manvel and C&R3 approved the construction plans, gaining additional blessings from BDD4 and BDD5.
On June 21, 2022, the City of Manvel and its collaborating entities broke ground on the much-anticipated Manvel Drainage Pond, and work on Phase 1 of the 2-Phase project began.
In honor of the contributions and dedication of Larry and Sharon Akery to the City of Manvel, the City Council named the drainage pond Akery Lake at the City Council meeting on July 17, 2023.
About the Project
The project will be done in two phases, with Phase 1 centering on rebuilding a ditch and constructing the berms. First-phase construction is expected to continue through 2025, with an original cost estimate of $500,000.
In the project, the city purchased the land and will be responsible for fuel and site needs, while the drainage districts will contribute labor and equipment. Had the job been contracted out, the entire project cost would have been about $40 million.
Once complete, Akery Lake will sit 13 feet below natural ground level and provide over 1,000 acre-feet of storage capacity (roughly 326,000,000 gallons of water). Put another way, 117 acres is about the same footprint as 100 football fields.
Follow along with the project's progress via our drone updates on Youtube!