In Texas, Turning to Outsiders to Finance Water Deals

Developers say the site for the proposed Lake Columbia reservoir in East Texas is not much to look at right now.

“They call it the Mud Creek floodplain,” Fred Brown, a partner at Tomlin Infrastructure Group, said of the site, which is about 120 miles southeast of Dallas. “I’d say it lives up to that name.”

But if it is built, the 15-mile-long reservoir, which would cover more than 10,000 acres and hold more than 64 billion gallons of water, could be a model for the changing way Texas is financing water projects.

Tomlin, a private infrastructure company ...

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