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County to open Arboles facility

Archuleta County staff and elected officials will officially open the recently-completed Arboles satellite facility during a ribbon cutting ceremony Sept. 29 at 4:30 p.m.

The facility is located at 95 County Road 973, at the intersection of County Road 973 and Colo. 151 and adjacent to the Arboles Transfer Station.

According to Archuleta County Special Projects Director Karin Kohake, the 3,600 square-foot facility consists of two equipment bays for road and bridge department equipment maintenance and storage, an office for a sheriff’s deputy, a small conference room and a bathroom.

Kohake said county staff and elected officials launched the project in order to provide a secure location for road maintenance equipment in the Arboles area; to create efficiencies for road crews and projects by eliminating the need to haul road and bridge equipment back and forth between Arboles and Pagosa Springs; to provide a meeting place for Arboles residents and to enhance sheriff’s patrol coverage in the area.

Archuleta County Sheriff Pete Gonzalez said he would staff the Arboles office with either himself or one of his key staffers during regular and posted hours each week, such that Arboles residents can have their needs and concerns heard and addressed.

Gonzalez will announce the schedule following the ribbon cutting ceremony.

Kohake said the project began with a Department of Local Affairs Energy and Mineral Impact Assistance grant award of $259,227 in April 2007 with a county match of $189,000. Soon thereafter, however, the county financial crisis derailed the project.

By summer of 2008, county staff resurrected the project and pushed it through with help from DOLA staff.

On Oct. 21, 2008, the Board of County Commissioners awarded a $45,000 contract to Reynolds and Associates to design and engineer the building, in addition to naming them project managers.

In November 2008, requests for proposals went out for the construction portion of the project, and the commissioners awarded the contract to Hart Construction of Pagosa Springs on Jan, 20, 2009. Hart’s bid came in at $397,981 — $32,019 less than the 2007 anticipated cost.

On March 18, 2009, county staff and elected officials held a groundbreaking ceremony with the certificate of occupancy obtained Aug. 21, 2009.

Following the ribbon cutting ceremony on Sept. 29, the board of county commissioners will host the Arboles community meeting at 6 p.m. in the new facility.

james@pagosasun.com