Mission Reach bike and hike path

Reduce Flood Risk


The San Antonio River Authority approaches reducing flood risk through watershed master planning and dam maintenance.

Using the data developed in the Flood Risk Studies, watershed master plans identify areas of high flood risk, recommend potential mitigation actions and prioritize the actions. Watershed master plans have been developed for each of the major watersheds in Bexar County and for Wilson, Karnes, and Goliad Counties. For each prioritized area, concept plans for mitigation projects, such as improvements to low water crossings, were developed. Because the River Authority is restricted from funding capital improvement projects, we coordinate with the Bexar Regional Watershed Management partners, the United States Army Corps of Engineers, and other outside funding agencies to implement capital improvement project recommendations. The watershed master plans also investigate water quality concerns and stream stability. Where possible, project recommendations address multiple design objectives to promote safe, clean, and enjoyable creeks and rivers. The findings and recommendations from the watershed master plans can be explored in the Watershed Master Plan Viewer.

Flood Retention Dams

Operation and Maintenance

San Antonio River Authority Flood Water Retention Dams


The River Authority has two maintenance units which operate and maintain the 41 flood retention dams.  The majority of these dams are located on privately owned land. The main thrust of the maintenance program is the management of the vegetative cover on the flood retention dams which prevents destructive soil erosion and provides for structural stability. River Authority maintenance staff are responsible for addressing property owners concerns, maintenance and repair of the spillway inlet structures and fences around the dams.

The River Authority’s Bexar County Maintenance Unit is located in southeast Bexar County near Loop 1604 and Highway 181 South in a 4,000 square foot facility. The unit is responsible for the 28 flood retention dams in the Salado, Calaveras and Martinez Creek Watersheds as well as one structure located in the Helotes area.

The Karnes County Maintenance Unit is located on the northern edge of Kenedy on land donated by the Kenedy Chamber of Commerce. In cooperation with the Escondido Watershed District, Hondo Watershed District, the City of Kenedy and the Karnes County Soil and Water Conservation District, the River Authority’s maintenance personnel operate and maintain thirteen flood retention dams and 2.07 miles of Nichols Creek.

San Antonio River Authority | 100 E. Guenther, San Antonio, Texas, 78204 | 1(866)345-7272

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