Dear District Resident,
The Bilma Public Utility District (“District”) Board of Directors (“Board”) would like to provide an update on the status of repairs to the District’s hike and bike trails along the Spring Gully Tributary.
In June 2021, the Harris County Flood Control District (“HCFCD”) began a Major Maintenance project of the Spring Gully Tributary, which runs parallel with the District’s hike and bike trails. The HCFCD contractor completed the construction of the repairs to the HCFCD’s channels in the area of the District’s hike and bike trails in December 2021. During construction, the heavy equipment that the HCFCD contractor utilized damaged the existing hike and bike trail beyond repair. Although the District anticipated areas of minor damage to the existing hike and bike trail, they did not anticipate the collateral damage caused by the heavy equipment. Due to the extent of the damage, the District was forced to prepare plans to construct a new hike and bike trail and obtain approval from governmental agencies before proceeding with construction. The required process of obtaining governmental agency approval to construct a new trail has unfortunately extended the timeframe of placing the hike and bike trail back into service.
The Board has decided to replace the entire east side of the hike and bike trail, the portion that runs closest to Kuehnle Elementary, with an 8-foot (8’) wide concrete hike and bike trail, which is a more durable and cost-effective material. The District hopes to receive approvals from governmental agencies in February 2022. Immediately following governmental agency approvals, the District will be required to publicly advertise and bid the project for construction. At this time, the District anticipates construction of the new hike and bike trail (east of tributary) to begin in April 2022, pending any delays with obtaining approvals from governmental agencies. For the safety of everyone, the east side of the trail remains officially closed to public access until construction is complete in mid-2022.
The District has already facilitated temporary repairs to the asphalt paving on the portion of the hike and bike trail west of the Spring Gully Tributary (the trail across the creek from Kuehnle Elementary) and north of TC Jester Boulevard. This portion of the trail is officially open to the public.
The Board understands how vital the east side of the hike and bike trail is for students walking to and from Kuehnle Elementary. Unfortunately, this portion of the hike and bike trail will be inaccessible for the remainder of the 2021-2022 school year. To help alleviate the burden caused by the east side of the hike and bike trail being closed, the District constructed a sidewalk along Winding Ridge Drive to connect the soccer fields to Kuehnle Elementary School.
The Board thanks the community for their patience during HCFCD’s maintenance project and as the District begins to repair and replace the hike and bike trails. Please feel free to contact the Board or attend a monthly meeting if you have any questions.
Bilma PUD Board of Directors