The Gila County Board of Supervisors on June 4 agreed to contribute perhaps $300,000 to the $5.4 million cost of building more bridges on the Houston Mesa and Control roads.
Starting this fall, the federal government will start replacing three low-water crossings with bridges — the second and third crossings on Houston Mesa Road and one near Tonto Village on the Control Road.
The Houston Mesa Road crossings will complement work done by the Town of Payson to build the Blue Ridge pipeline along the same route.
Preliminary engineering estimates put the cost of the project at $5.4 million and the county’s 5.75 percent matching share at $311,000. However, the costs could rise slightly with final engineering.
The county will get the money from a half-cent transportation excise tax, reported Public Works Director Steve Sanders.
The projects have been in the works since 2011.
The Central Federal Lands Highway Division outlined the proposed work:
• Houston Mesa second and third crossings: Includes a two-span bridge, wall, minor roadway realignment, regrading and drainage ditches. The existing crossing can’t handle peak storm events, causing frequent road closures and repairs.
• Control Road at Tonto Village: Includes single-span bridge, roadway realignment, grading, drainage to completely replace existing crossing. The channel under the proposed bridge will be re-graded.
The Control Road project will allow for an improved roadway tie into Johnson Boulevard, which is the main access road to Tonto Village by eliminating a dangerous, angled intersections.
Contractors must allow traffic through and minimize delays.