Rifle approves about $4.71 million in infrastructure projects | PostIndependent.com

Rifle approves about $4.71 million in infrastructure projects

Crack sealing, pavement overlay and the purchase of a new water tank are all on a small to-do list of infrastructure projects unfolding this summer in Rifle.

Rifle City Council approved on Wednesday about $4.71 million in construction bids for four respective projects. This includes:

•installing a water tank at the Rifle Garfield County Airport;

• crack sealing seven streets in North Pasture;

• applying high-density mineral bond coatings to roads at North Pasture, North Rifle and Highlands East;

• street and asphalt improvements at Airport Road, Railroad Avenue, the city cemetery and Enterprise Court


Cost: About $3.02 million; bid awarded to Velocity Constructors Inc., Englewood.

Vote: 4-2, with Mayor Ed Green and Council Member Joe Carpenter voting no.

Background: Rifle Garfield County Airport has an existing water tank in need of repair, Rifle Utilities Director Robert Burns said. To do so, the installation of a redundant, 500,000 gallon water tank is required in order to drain the existing tank and recoat it to prevent leaks.

Importance: The airport water tank not only feeds the airport, it feeds Colorado Mountain College Rifle, Garfield County Road and Bridge District and Garfield County Sheriff’s Annex building. These agencies purchase the water from Rifle.

In addition, the water tank can act as a backup water source for the city of Rifle, while it can be used as a water source to fight any potential fires in the area.

Discussion: The notion to purchase a new water tank for the airport first came in 2019, Rifle Civil Engineer Craig Spaulding said. The city at that time anticipated a cost of $1.2 million; however, inflation as well as rising costs to excavate bedrock to install the new tank drove up the price, Spaulding said.

Rifle City Council members asked if there were additional funding sources to support the project, since it is not used as the city’s primary source of water supply.

“It’s our tank, it’s our water system, and they are our customers,” Burns said.

Construction schedule: Spaulding said the project should be completed by November but could extend into spring 2023.

Road closures: not anticipated.


Cost: About $1.48 million; bid awarded to Frontier Paving Inc., Rifle.

Vote: Unanimous

Background: Asphalt and street improvements are needed for repairs on Airport Road, Railroad Avenue, Enterprise Court and the Rifle Cemetery.

Importance: Addressing regular infrastructure needs.

Discussion: The two biggest items on this checklist are road improvements to Railroad Avenue and Airport Road.

Spaulding said the full mill and overlay activities won’t close traffic completely; however, businesses in the Airport Road area can expect pavers to need time to conduct activities near access driveways.

Meanwhile, road improvement activities are planned for the Railroad Avenue bridge at Ninth Street. The contractor will complete the project in halves, said Spaulding.

“There’s still going to be traffic both ways,” he said. “Biggest thing on that one is avoiding the Garfield County Fair.”

Construction schedule: Spaulding said these projects could start as early as July and finish in September, depending on order.

“There’s different schedules for each one of these locations,” Spaulding said.

Road closures: not anticipated.


Cost: About $172,661; bid awarded to Andale Construction, Wichita, Kansas

Vote: Unanimous

Background: Set to install a high-density mineral bonding agent (HA5) to asphalt roadways in North Rifle, Highlands East and North Pasture, the proposal to apply HA5 after crack sealing all needed roads in these areas came in 2019. Now that all necessary roads are crack sealed, the city intends to apply the bonding agent to the roadways.

Importance: This certain type of bonding agent is a preventative measure that thwarts UV exposure and water infiltration. Application of the agent extends the lifespan of asphalt roadways, Public Works Director Brian Prunty said.

“It’s really good at preserving roadways — especially for newer pavements,” he said.

Discussion: Rifle City Council members asked why there isn’t a more local contractor that specializes in high-density mineral bonding. Spaulding said this is the only company to offer this service between Kansas and Nevada.

“It might just be the demand,” Spaulding said.

Construction schedule: Aug. 24 through Oct. 2.

Road closures: The project will require some closures during application and curing.


Cost: About $37,967; bid awarded to Armor Proseal, Montrose.

Vote: Unanimous.

Background: The North Pasture neighborhood was mostly constructed between 2000-2008, Spaulding said. Chip sealing was performed in this neighborhood in 2018.

Importance: Spaulding said there are now reflection cracks underneath the chip sealing done in 2018. Crack sealing is now needed on all roads in North Pasture to prevent water from seeping into the asphalt, which can potentially cause damage.

Discussion: minimal

Construction schedule: Aug. 24 through Oct. 2.

Road closures: not anticipated; however, traffic control procedures expected.

Reporter Ray K. Erku can be reached at 612-423-5273 or rerku@postindependent.com

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