Abilene mayor says future plans for Cedar Ridge Reservoir are ‘doubtful’


ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) — Plans for a potential fifth water source for the City of Abilene are now in doubt, according to Mayor Anthony Williams.

The Cedar Ridge Reservoir was a major crusade led by former Mayor Norm Archibald, and was to become Abilene’s fifth water source.

Mayor Anthony Williams addressed the plan Wednesday afternoon at a Kiwanis meeting. 

“Personally, I think it’s doubtful that we develop Cedar Ridge because we have enough water,” says Mayor Williams. 

The plan for the proposed Cedar Ridge Reservoir was to flood more than 6,500 acres of land north of Abilene at a cost of about $400 million.

The city’s current water sources include Lake Fort Phantom Hill, Lake Hubbard, O.H. Ivie Lake and Possum Kingdom Lake.  

The mayor says on average Abilene uses about 22 million gallons of water a day. 

“If Abilene can illustrate that we have enough water for the next 50 to 70 years, it means we have an opportunity of investment in our community,” Williams said. 

But since Abilene has enough water for the next 50 to 70 years, mayor Williams wants to put that money elsewhere.  

“We have an agreement with Clayton Williams Holding of some groundwater in far, far West Texas. Before that agreement, Abilene was the largest city in the state not to have ground water in its portfolio,” Mayor Williams says.

There is also a plan to take more water out of O.H. Ivie Lake.

“If Abilene needs water, we’re going to take Midland’s take out of Ivie,” Williams said. 

City council has not made a final decision on Cedar Ridge Reservoir’s development, but there is an upcoming vote needing the agreement of four members.

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