HARDIN COUNTY, Texas — Months after neighbors voiced their opposition to a new development the county has signed off on phase one of the project.
The land will soon be developed into a more than 2,000-acre neighborhood.
Dozens of homes will be built on a piece of land across from the city park on FM 421, but many people fear the new neighborhood will make flooding worse.
"The water is just going to be something that I don’t think they can deal with, on big rain events, not talking Harvey events but just big rain events is where I’m concerned," said Lumberton resident Erik Postula.
Postula has the same fears he had six months ago when Hardin County commissioners first talked about the project.
This week, they authorized Judge Wayne McDaniel to execute an agreement between the county and the developer for phase one.
"We do have a drainage issue in that area," said Precinct 3 Commissioner Amanda Young.
She admitted there's an issue.
"A lot of the city of Lumberton drains to Bogee Creek from construction that was done 40 years ago. We haven't had this much growth except for in the last ten years or so I’d say, so with all of that combined, it has created a problem," Young said.
She said the developer has been willing to work with the county.
"The developer has gone above and beyond our requirements to try to give a little relief to the people and the drainage," Young said.
She said typical regulation is to have detention for runoff from a 25-year storm, but the developer is optimistic they can do better than that.
"As far as the engineer says, the water runoff from that area will be less than it is undeveloped," Young said.
Along with drainage issues, residents are worried about what the development could do to traffic and the population. With the development approved, all they can do is brace for what's to come.
"It’s not a matter of if it will happen to this specific area, but when,” Postula said.
Phase one of the project will consist of 75 lots and 6 blocks, and it marks the start of more growth in the City of Lumberton.