ROUND ROCK, Texas (KXAN) — The City of Round Rock launched a new online dashboard that allows the community to see how their conservation efforts are contributing to regional water-saving goals, according to the city’s website.
The online dashboard will also inform city leaders of whether more restrictions are required to meet those goals, the website said.
This comes after the call from the city’s raw water providers urging residents to reduce water consumption due to ongoing dry conditions.
According to the city, the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) announced it has entered Stage 2 of its drought response. LCRA provides raw water from Lake Travis to the city, as well as other nearby cities.
Furthermore, the LCRA asked the city to cut back water use by 10-20% and implement mandatory water restrictions, the website said. In a similar fashion, the Brazos River Authority enacted a Stage 2 Drought Warning for lakes Georgetown and Stillhouse Hollow earlier this month, according to the city.
The new dashboard will aim to help water customers achieve at least a 10% reduction in overall usage for the city. The highest daily demand on record for 2023 is approximately 38 million gallons per day (MGD), which means Round Rock’s daily water usage needs to drop below 34 MGD. The dashboard also shows levels for Round Rock’s surface water sources to help customers understand the need for conservation measures until the region receives sufficient rains, according to the city.
The city has been under mandatory Stage 1 Drought Restrictions since June 2022. Restrictions for Stage 1 establish a maximum of two watering days per week for all Round Rock water customers, according to the city. This includes residents living in Municipal Utility Districts (MUDs) that are wholesale customers of the city.
In addition to the new dashboard, Round Rock has enacted “smart enforcement” of its outdoor watering schedule by using data from the city’s metering system, the website said. The city’s water conservation team, with the assistance of the code enforcement department, has reached out to more than 500 different property owners regarding violations based on water usage data to gain compliance. Based on a recent evaluation of meter data, approximately 11% of residents used 35% of the city’s total water produced during the month of July. The team will continue to focus efforts on top water users to ensure compliance with the outdoor watering schedule currently in place, according to the city.
“We have built the infrastructure needed in Round Rock to be able to survive drought conditions, but it’s now our time to do our part for our region,” said Utilities and Environmental Services Director Michael Thane. “Outdoor watering has caused more than a 50% increase in total water usage this summer, so that is the simplest place for our customers to cut back for a 10% overall reduction.”
The city’s two-day-per-week watering schedule is based on the last digit of your home or property address, and watering may not take place between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. on your designated watering day, according to the city. Hand watering is allowed at any time, and is encouraged as a way to more closely monitor your water usage, the website said.
Round Rock’s water conservation team offers multiple initiatives and rebates throughout the year to encourage more mindful water usage. Irrigation upgrades and rainwater collection are eligible for rebates, and the city has rain barrels on sale through Sept. 25, or while supplies last, the website said.
Stage 1 outdoor watering schedule
|Address ends in||Allowed watering days|
|0||Monday / Thursday|
|1||Wednesday / Saturday|
|2||Tuesday / Friday|
|3||Monday / Thursday|
|4 or 8||Sunday / Thursday|
|5 or 9||Wednesday / Saturday|
|6 or 7||Tuesday / Friday|
To learn more and to view the conservation dashboard, go to roundrocktexas.gov/conservation.