Questions or Comments: tmdl@tceq.texas.gov
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Neches River Below Lake Palestine, Tributaries: A Community Project to Protect Recreational Uses

A project to reduce bacteria and protect recreational safety in watersheds in the Lufkin area. The stakeholders and TCEQ are developing a total maximum daily load (TMDL) and implementation plan (I-Plan), which together will be the road map for improving water quality.

photo of Cedar Creek in the Lufkin area
Cedar Creek in Lufkin
Photo courtesy of the Angelina and Neches River Authority
map of the Matagorda Bay watershed

County: Angelina
Parameter: Bacteria
Basin: Neches River
Segments: 0604A, 0604B, 0604C, 0604M
Assessment Units (AUs): 0604A_02, 0604B_01, 0604C_01, 0604M_03

On this page:

Background and Goal

In portions of four stream segments in the Lufkin area, bacteria concentrations are sometimes higher than the criteria set to protect the safety of recreation. High concentrations of bacteria, which are found in both human and animal waste, may indicate a health risk to people who swim or wade in the water body—activities called “contact recreation” in the state’s standards for water quality.

The goal of this project is to improve water quality to protect recreational uses. Toward that goal, the TCEQ and stakeholders are developing a TMDL and an I-Plan to reduce bacteria in the creeks.

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Watershed Description

The watersheds lie in Angelina County in east Texas in the vicinity of Lufkin, and include the cities of Hudson and Lufkin. The project includes portions of Jack Creek, Cedar Creek, Hurricane Creek, and Biloxi Creek. The watershed area for this project is also referred to as Tributaries of the Neches River below Lake Palestine.

The project includes assessment units (AU) in four stream segments:

  • Jack Creek (Segment 0604C)
    From the confluence with Cedar Creek (0604A) upstream to confluence with unnamed tributary southwest of US Hwy 69 northwest of Lufkin.
  • Cedar Creek (Segment 0604A, AU 02)
    From the confluence with Jack Creek (0604C) to the confluence with unnamed tributary adjacent to State Loop 287. This assessment area is the only impaired portion of the stream.
  • Hurricane Creek (Segment 0604B)
    From the confluence with Cedar Creek (0604A) upstream to the headwaters near Groesbeck Ave in Lufkin.
  • Biloxi Creek (Segment 0604M, AU 03)
    From the confluence with One Eye Creek in Angelina County southeast of Lufkin upstream to FM 325 east of Lufkin. This assessment area is the only impaired portion of the stream.

The Jack Creek watershed, which includes portions of the city of Hudson, is about 29 square miles. The dominant land cover includes hay/pasture (33%), forest (33%) and developed (13%).

The Cedar Creek watershed is about 32 square miles. The dominant land cover includes forest (37%), developed (25%), and hay/pasture (19%). It includes portions of the cities of Hudson and Lufkin.

The Hurricane Creek watershed, which includes portions of Lufkin, is about 13 square miles. The dominant land cover includes developed (66%) and forest (22%). 

The Biloxi Creek watershed is about 19 square miles. The dominant land cover includes forest (37%), hay/pasture (31%), and developed (17%). It includes small portions of Lufkin.

Get Involved

Staff from the Texas Water Resources Institute (TWRI) are working with communities, interest groups, and local organizations to distribute information about this project and involve stakeholders in developing the I-Plan for watershed improvement. All public meetings about this project are open to anyone interested. Watch for meeting announcements here and on the TWRI websiteExit the TCEQ.

Meeting Records

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Draft Total Maximum Daily Loads

Public comment on these TMDLs closed on April 25, 2022. TCEQ will review all comments received and revise the TMDLs if needed. The final TMDLs will be published here when adopted by the Commission.

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Reports

Contact the TMDL Program

Please e-mail tmdl@tceq.texas.gov, and mention the Lufkin Area Watersheds project in the subject line. Or call us at 512-239-6682.

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communities working together taking care of our rivers, lakes, and bays