TEXAS GENERAL LAND OFFICE ANNOUNCES CONTRACTOR FOR ROLLOVER PASS CLOSURE
GALVESTON, TEXAS – Today, the Texas General Land Office announced the award of contract for the closure of Rollover Pass, Bolivar Peninsula to Brizo Construction, LLC. The notice to proceed will be issued on September 9th, 2019. Fencing is expected to be installed by the end of September. At this time, construction on the pass is expected to continue through April 2020.
The closure of Rollover Pass was authorized by the Texas Legislature in 2009, under Senate Bill 2043. Rollover Pass is a man-made strait. It was cut into the Bolivar Peninsula in 1955 by the Texas Game and Fish Commission (which is now Texas Parks & Wildlife) at the peninsula’s narrowest point. The pass connected the Gulf of Mexico with Rollover Bay and was intended to improve water quality and salinity in the bay and help with fish migration while also improving local fishing conditions.
Unfortunately, the Pass has created a number of damaging side effects that threaten public and private property and cost Texas and U.S. taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars every year. Costly erosion, environmental damage, storm threats, and safety concerns have plagued Rollover Pass for years. Flow velocity threatens the State Highway 87 bridge, which is the only land access to the Bolivar Peninsula and the primary hurricane evacuation route. The closure of the Pass will address the issues above, in addition allowing nearby estuaries to return to their natural state and strengthen natural fish and oyster habitats.
Following the closure of the pass, a public park and recreational area are proposed, including a fishing pier on the gulf side of the peninsula. The projects would be built as soon as possible. The GLO is currently in the pier permitting process with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.