CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Many residents of the Tierra Grande neighborhood said flooding has been a recurring problem for decades.
“It’s actually very pretty besides it being green and ugly….very beautiful waterfront property,” Brianna Nuñez jokingly said about the massive amount of floodwater around her house.
Now, while it’s not exactly a waterfront property, Nuñez said this issue has been ongoing since she was a kid, having to carry rain boots with her to school, but she said this year the water is sticking around for longer.
“Usually every almost every year it does get flooded but not as much water as this. It’s just usually like a few puddles that’ll dry over the week but it hasn’t been this continuous for this long and it happened very quickly,” she said.
Across the street, Rick Resendez was checking on his parents’ house when his truck got stuck in floodwater on their property. He said his friend had to use a tractor to pull his truck out.
“It’s pretty hard to get back in there right now and it’s, I don’t recommend it to anyone that does have a regular car or even a four-wheel drive. You have to be real careful and be prepared,” Resendez said.
Gus de la Peña lives next to Resendez’s parents and said this issue has been a problem for him throughout the 35 years he’s lived in the neighborhood. He blames Nueces County and the city of Corpus Christi for their lack of attention to the flooding.
“Concentrate on a county drainage system before you start building more subdivisions because it’s going to flood over and over and over and nothings going to get done,” he said.
It is important to note that Tierra Grande is not under the jurisdiction of the City of Corpus Christi.
He said flooding and poor drainage in the area isn’t just a problem in his neighborhood, but also in the entire county. He said he’s seen trucks drain out water from flooded crop areas, but has never seen them in his neighborhood.
“They keep putting a band-aid over North Beach, keep putting a band-aid over disaster area like Padre Island, over disaster area like North Beach. Why continue putting band-aid over band-aid when the county needs fixing?” De la Peña said.
However, Nueces County Emergency Management said they did a study in 2019 that focused on flooding in Tierra Grande. Because of that study, they purchased property to build a retention pond, but that pond is currently being evaluated as part of a possible bigger plan for drainage in the county, so it doesn’t have a timeline on construction.
“We’re working in a much larger effort to really make a difference and really improve the drainage and the flooding here so that we don’t keep having to go through this and have not only the loss and devastation to the residents but also that economic impact,” Melissa Munguia, the coordinator for Nueces County Emergency Management said.
She said the county is also participating in Texas’ watershed study which is looking at drainage and flooding in the entire region.