Garfield County looking at $22.2 million in 2014 road projects |

Garfield County looking at $22.2 million in 2014 road projects

Continuing work to complete safety upgrades on Four Mile Road outside Glenwood Springs and two projects involving major oil and gas haul routes south of Silt and west of Parachute are among $22.2 million worth of road and bridge projects in Garfield County’s proposed 2014 budget.

County commissioners this week reviewed and gave the initial go-ahead to a list of 15 different road and bridge projects to include in the county’s spending plan.

Most of that proposed spending though, $11.8 million, is being carried over from this year. An additional $10.4 million in newly budgeted money is proposed to bring some of those projects to completion, according to Garfield County Road and Bridge Director Debbie Fiscus.

Commissioners will take another look at the overall proposed $123.2 million spending budget for next year at a special meeting on Nov. 26. The budget, which includes $88.8 million in operating expenses is set for final approval on Dec. 9.

Topping the list of road and bridge projects will be approximately $5.7 million to continue work on rebuilding the Una Bridge on County Road 300, located west of the Parachute/Battlement Mesa area.

Part of the funding for that project, $300,000, comes from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs grant, Fiscus said.

Another nearly $5 million is also being budgeted next year to rebuild a portion of County Road 311 in the Divide Creek area south of Silt.

Both of those projects involve roads that are major designated haul routes for the oil and gas industry.

Another large road expenditure of nearly $2.5 million is being directed at the ongoing safety work on Four Mile Road at the intersection of County Roads 117 and 126. That work involves realignment of the intersection, replacement of the Black Diamond Bridge and straightening of the so-called Dead Man’s Curve in that area.

Other projects involving county roads and related infrastructure in the 2014 budget include continued design work and planning at two major county road intersections along State Highway 82 south of Glenwood Springs, at the CMC turnoff and at Cattle Creek. Both of those projects are budgeted for $2 million next year.

Proposed improvements at the CMC intersection include $800,000 in funding from the Colorado Department of Transportation.

Another $2 million is also being set aside for replacement of the Canyon Creek bridge on County Road 137 west of Glenwood Springs, according to the proposed 2014 projects budget.

A projected $129 million overall county fund balance at the end of this year is expected to be drawn down to about $105 million by the end of 2014, according to county finance director Ann Driggers.

The county is anticipating $98.7 million in total revenues for the coming year to go toward $123.2 million in expenditures, according to the budget proposal. The 2014 budget reflects about a $15 million drop in property tax revenues that came as a result of declining property valuations in the county.

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