A ribbon-cutting event marked the completion of the road improvements and it also marked many years of hard work by the community and District “It’s a community effort,” said District 1 Council Representative Arzie Hogg.
Commuting on Blackwater School Road incurred some risks especially during a rainstorm. "They would have to close off the road at the dips," said Tony Rodriguez, Supervisory Civil made it difficult for traveling, Engineering Tech, Gila River which raised issues for emergency Indian Community Department vehicles and school vehicles.
During a rainstorm flooding made it difficult for traveling, which raised issues for emergency vehicles and school vehicles. "It's going to make it easier on the school busses, less wear and tear,” said Lewis.
Council Representative Hogg estimated that the road improvement project dates back over 25 years.
Former Lt. Gov. Cecil Antone served as a guest speaker in place of former Council Representative Harry A. Cruye, Jr.
Antone said that the effort of Cruye and others led directly to the present enhancements of the roads. “A lot of the work when [Cruye] was on the council represents some of the work today,” Antone said.
The project extended on Blackwater School Road from State Route 87 to Skousen Road - about 5.4 miles. Phase I consisted of redesigning the “S” curves along the road and changing the elevations to increase safety. Phase II consisted of improving the width. It was widened from 12 to 18 ft., which is safer for pedestrians and bicyclists. Phase III was overlaying the complete road with asphalt.
“We were able to pave a very good road that’s going to give you many years of use,” said Andy Jamrogiewicz, Nesbitt Contracting.
Steve Johnson, Acting Director/Civil Engineer, GRICDOT, commented on the good cooperation the community had with Nesbitt Contracting. “They were just great on this project,” he said.
Johnson said the project benefited from the economic stimulus package of 2009. He said the federal government, “gave [the community] another $2,000,000 in ARRA (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) funding to build this project.”
Johnson, as well as Hogg, thanked Ruben Norris and Allan Blackwater for their persistence in the road improvements. “They were really our sounding board to the community,” Johnson said.
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