Work underway to repair Harvey Gap Road
The road to repairing the direct thoroughfare between Silt and the area around Harvey Gap State Park is underway, although a timetable for reopening the road remains murky.
Garfield County commissioners earlier this week approved a contract with SGM for engineering and design work on Harvey Gap Road, which remains closed following a partial collapse on Aug. 21.
The contract, which was submitted days after commissioners authorized emergency procurement last week, will not exceed $125,000 — a cap that was made based on some assumptions and has room for cost savings, Jamaica Watts, chief procurement officer for the county, said Monday.
Those savings could come through using county road and bridge staff for some of the work, as well as bringing a contractor on board early in the process, which would save time, Watts explained.
The scope of work includes determining the source of the underlying water that saturated the ground and caused the collapse.
The Silt Water Conservancy District is working on realigning a ditch that runs alongside a portion of the road, however, water district officials have said they have been unable to pinpoint the source of the water.
SGM’s scope of work also includes evaluating other portions of the road to determine if there is any undetected damage, as well as designing a realigned route for the road.
“We’re pleased with the proposal,” Watts said.
The team at SGM started work earlier this week following commissioners approval of the contract on Monday.
SGM gave a 30-day period for design work, but a timetable for reopening the road will depend on the information collected, Watts said.
“Until they get in there with the geotechnical and get some numbers and get some more information I don’t think we’re able to say for sure when that road is going to be open … ” Watts said.
Commissioners repeated their desire to see work progress as quickly as possible. Residents north of the closure have voiced concerns about a prolonged closure of Harvey Gap Road and the impacts that could have on emergency services. Those same residents also shared their frustration over what they said was a lack of information regarding the closure.
“We do have residents who rely on … that road and are very concerned,” Commissioner Tom Jankovsky said Monday.
Deputy County Manager Fred Jarman said county staff would provide regular updates to commissioners and continue to release information on the reapair process.
Commissioner John Martin said the county needs to proceed quickly, but not lose sight of safety.
“It affects everyone up there … so we need to make sure that we have it on the front burner. … We need to move as fast as possible but as safely as possible,” Martin said.
As for the source of funding, Watts pointed to the bridge scour protection project line item in the budget, which had approximately $1.9 million budgeted for the year. With about $700,000 spent so far this year, Watts said the $1.1 million remaining in the fund would be more than enough to pay for the engineering and design work, and possibly the construction work, although she said the latter will depend on the work done in the coming weeks.
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