April 13, 2012
Gila County has nearly finished a $6 million, federally funded project to replace seven aging bridges on the Control Road, which connects Tonto Village and Pine along the base of the Mogollon Rim. The bridges will help guarantee a wildfire escape route for isolated communities. This is the Lewis Creek Bridge.
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Tonto Creek bridge, Pine Creek Canyon hit troubled waters, but smooth sailing for Control Road bridges
Construction of new bridges in northern Gila County wrapped up last week on schedule and under budget. The project is one of a handful of roadway improvements in the county cruising forward. A bridge in Tonto Basin is the only one that appears years off course. Officials say they can’t pin down funding for the $20 million Tonto Basin bridge that would link east and west Tonto Creek residents and end decades of sometimes tragic swift water rescues. While design work is nearing completion, several attempts at securing funding have failed. Most recently, the U.S. Department of Transportation rejected a grant application.