A water project in the works for over a decade is set to begin construction with water flowing soon after completion. The hope is the water will not only support agricultural growth and feed homes, but grow employment and seed future investments in the area the water is headed
The waters of Greers Ferry Lake will quench anyone's desire for relief from the summer heat and after the Lonoke White Public Water Authority broke ground today the hope is that the lake will seed growth.
"When companies are looking for an area if you don't have water in an area they are not going to look at you. "
The areas to be fed by water from Greers are in White, Lonoke, and parts of Faulkner and Pulaski counties. With the ground breaking today jobs will be created.
Mayor Art Brooke says "In the next 2 years there will be a lot of employment opportunities with the companies working here."
This water project has taken almost 15 years to get this far and is testament to cooperation among local state and federal entities that did not always see eye to eye, and often stalled the project. Senator Mark Pryor says the project should be seen as an example nationwide.
"What we are going to see not just in Arkansas but all over the country is more and more water problems. We are in a drought right now people are sensitive to it but the truth is we don't have enough people focusing on the water needs for various communities."
Overall it will be a $55 Million project. The USDA Rural Development has committed $24.5 million with the Arkansas Natural Resource Commission looking to cover the rest.
It will take about 2 years to build the intake at Greers, 11 meter stations and 72 miles of pipeline. The project alone will be a job creator ahead of the water flow.