Highway And Bridge Projects Will Cause Delays

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A variety of road projects are rolling into place just in time for the summer tourist season.

Crews will soon set to work on both SR 260 and Houston Mesa Road.

ADOT announced this week it would start work on SR 260 about 17 miles east of Payson. Starting Tuesday, eastbound lanes on SR 260 will close in two locations for work on bridges, with all traffic shunted to westbound lanes through work zones for the bridge rehabilitation project along a 10-mile stretch of 260 (mileposts 267-277).

Drivers will find the eastbound lanes closed and traffic switched over to one of the westbound lanes creating a two-way roadway. Work hours are 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday.

The first will be at the Tonto Creek Bridge (mileposts 267-268) near Kohl’s Ranch Road and the second will start at the Christopher Creek Campground (mileposts 272-277) and work eastbound for five miles.

Delays are possible for the next three months so drivers need to allow extra travel time to reach their destinations.  

ADOT advises drivers to proceed through the work zone with caution, comply with the reduced speed limit.

This $2.9 million project consists of reconstructing the bridge approaches of eight structures on the eastbound and westbound roadways.

Work also includes milling and replacing the existing pavement at the bridge approaches, guard­rail reconstruction and the re­placement of pavement markings.

For information, email projects@azdot.gov or call the ADOT project hotline at 1-855-712-8530 or visit the ADOT Traveler Infor­mation Center at www.az511.gov or call 5-1-1.

Houston Mesa Road closures

Houston Mesa Road (FR 199) will be closed between Second and Third Crossing from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday, May 7 for bridge girder erection.

The closure will be at the Water Wheel recreation site on the south side and at Whispering Pines at the north side (between milepost 7 and milepost 9).

This work is part of a multi-phase project by the U.S. Forest Service brought before the Gila County Board of Supervisors last June.

It could cost Gila County about $300,000.

The project will replace three low water crossings with bridges — the second and third crossings on Houston Mesa Road and one near Tonto Village on the Control Road.

Currently in Tonto Village, a bypass is under construction. The projects have been in the works since 2011.

The Control Road project also allows for an improved roadway tie into Johnson Boulevard, which is the main access road to the Tonto Village. A severe skew angle at this location is not safe due to the limited sight distance to oncoming traffic.

In conjunction with the Houston Mesa Road projects, work will progress on the Blue Ridge pipeline in the area to further lessen traffic problems for area residents.

More area ADOT work

The Gila County Board of Supervisors heard an update on ADOT’s plans for the Rim Country and met Alvin Stump, the Prescott District (which includes the Payson area) engineer.

Two projects planned for FY 2014 are improvements to the intersection of SR 87 and SR 260 in Payson and erosion mitigation on 260 at Wilbur Canyon.

Bids for the intersection project will be opened May 9 and it is estimated the work will cost $250,000. It includes lengthening the turning lanes and the extending the median, according to Stump.

Another SR 87 project taking place is improving the highway from SR 188 to Rye, costing $3.5 million and a curve realignment and a truck escape ramp coming down Slate Creek on SR 87 into Rye, which is expected to cost $8.2 million.

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