GRANITE SHOALS — The shortest segment of road on the proposed $3 million bond “reconfirm” vote in Granite Shoals will get the biggest dose of funding, but officials say they have a good reason for the expenditure: patchwork.
Voters will be asked to vote “yes” or “no” to reconfirming a $3 million bond Nov. 7 that they approved a year ago. In 2016, city officials believed the $3 million was the matching portion of a multimillion-dollar U.S. Department of Agriculture grant. Several weeks after the election ended, USDA officials told City Manager Ken Nickel the department would not be awarding more than $50,000.
Instead of spending the already approved $3 million on bonds, city leaders opted to ask voters on the upcoming ballot if they were still committed to the road projects, though a scaled-down version.
Granite Shoals is looking to make repairs or improvements to Phillips Ranch Road, Prairie Creek Road, and Valley View Drive. The city has released a breakdown of the estimated cost to repair the three main road arteries in the city.
Staff estimated the cost to repair a nine-tenths-of-a-mile stretch of Phillips Ranch Road from RR 1431 to Newcastle Drive will come in at just $1 million.
“The reason for the cost of this road is because we’ll have to get down to the base,” City Manager Ken Nickel said. “On the others, we can fix the problems and resurface it without asphalt.”
The repairs to this portion of Phillips Ranch Road require crews to basically tear up the existing stretch of roadway and build it up from scratch.
“Since I’ve been here, we haven’t done anything but patchwork on Phillips Ranch Road,” Nickel said. Simply resurfacing this portion of Phillips Ranch Road would just put off the inevitable and be a waste of money.
The other work includes repaving:
Phillips Ranch Road from New Castle to Live Oak Drive (1.46 miles) at an estimated cost of $869,000;
Prairie Creek Road from RR 1431 to Sherwood Drive (1.3 miles) at an estimated cost of $674,000;
and Valley View Drive from RR 1431 to Lee Way (1.53 miles) at an estimated cost of $490,000.
City officials released these numbers and answered several questions regarding the street bond from 30 attendees at a town hall meeting Oct. 14, Nickel said.
“We had a great bond meeting,” he said. “I think we answered the questions correctly. I thought the meeting went well and the presentation went well.”
Nickel said a number of voters thought the bond was something that’s needed, while others agreed road repairs are needed but so are new water lines, especially replacing those that are 40 years old or the ones that are on dead ends.
City officials noted the response from a city survey sent to residents stated the No. 1 priority was streets.
“But I didn’t get the overwhelming ‘We shouldn’t do this,’” the city manager said regarding the street bond reconfirmation.
Early voting for the Nov. 7 election is Monday-Friday, Oct. 23-Nov. 3.