High waters and flash flooding triggered by heavy rainfall are all too common in San Antonio, and those issues are something the city's Transportation and Capital Improvements department said it is constantly working to improve.
Nefi Garza is the department's assistant director. He oversees storm water.
“We've seen a lot worse. We're prepared for a lot worse,” he said. “The event [Monday] really highlighted many of the low-lying areas. That event could have been so much worse,” said Garza.
According to Garza, San Antonio's drainage system is equipped to handle up to 10 inches of rain over a 24-hour period. An event he said has only a one percent chance of happening each year.
Monday's rainfall brought in about 3-4 in. That was still enough to flood lower-lying roads.
“The low-lying areas like Pinn Road, Marbach Road and Commerce Street are also subject to flooding. We recognize it,” he said.
The city's 2012 and 2017 bond programs aim to improve problem areas. The most recent program sets aside nearly $140 million for 19 projects to improve drainage.
However, problem areas like Highway 151 and Pinn Road, where a high water rescue saved a man from the roof of his car, are not proposed in either bond program.
Garza said the department relies on the public to identify problem areas.
“It's important that the public notify us when they see that flooding, because it's through that information that we're able to identify solutions," he said.