Get it straight

This dog-leg curve a few miles in from Highway 61 on Stanford Drive is the first part of the roadway being realigned and repaved using $700,000 in Federal Highway Administration funds acquired by Apache County through the Arizona Department of Transportation. This section of roadway is expected to be done by October.

APACHE COUNTY — Back in January, Apache County Engineer Ferrin Crosby announced that through the Arizona Department of Transportation had acquired $700,000 in Federal Highway Administration funds to repave a small portion of Stanford Drive.

Construction of a section of Stanford Drive just past Apache County Road N8147 got underway June 20 and is expected to last until October 20.

This is the section of roadway that Crosby previously discussed at a public meeting at the Stanford Store. He said it needed straightening due to it being a dog-leg type of curve that was severely degraded and in need of repair from years of use and little maintenance.

It is also a curve that floods out in heavy rains. Some people who use Stanford Drive regularly said they considered dangerous.

That is just the first section of the road being tackled. The rest is expected to be completed by sometime next year.

“Unfortunately, due to the time required to purchase and access State Trust Lands through Section 21 and the additional funding requirements from the Federal Highway Administration, the county has stayed the course for a 2019 completion,” Crosby said earlier this year.

Through the ADOT, the county contracted with the TY LIN International engineering firm to design the project under ADOT management, with the county doing sub-grade work while also providing input on county needs.

In the interim, the county has beefed up degraded shoulders all along Stanford Drive to make it safer for the general motoring public and for heavy equipment that uses the road getting to and from their construction sites.

Crosby is on vacation and was unavailable to give more of an update on how the project is progressing and what might be the next section(s) of roadway to be redone.

At the meeting at the Stanford Store earlier this year he indicated the county did not have enough money to repave all of the areas that need it, adding that the untreated sections will just have to wait until funding can be procured.

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Mike Leiby covers police, courts, and the towns of Snowflake and Taylor.

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