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County to begin Red Bridge Road work in 2020

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Red Bridge Road, which runs north to south from East Pine Lodge Road to East McGaffey Street, has become a popular truck route in the last few years. This load, which involved several tractor trailers combined, made a recent pass down the route, as city of Roswell workers, who took the photo, watch from East Second Street. (Submitted Photo)

Chaves County has chosen a contractor to do construction work on two bridges on Red Bridge Road, a north-to-south running county road just east of the Roswell city limits.

Hasse Contracting Co. Inc. of Albuquerque is expected to begin the work in early 2020 on the bridge over the Berrendo River near 19th Street, which is near a popular local fishing spot, as well as the bridge that goes over the Hondo River, not too far from East Second Street.

Public Services Director Bill Williams added that the county is ready to proceed and timing will depend on when Hasse can begin work.

Williams said the county was grateful to state legislators for providing $250,000 in 2019 in state capital outlay funds for the project. The county also will contribute $150,000 of its own funding to the project to strengthen the bridges, which now handle heavy truckloads on a regular basis.

“When they did construction in town a few years back, the truck drivers were seeking alternative routes and they found that (the road),” he said. “Everyone, it seems like, uses Red Bridge Road to Pine Lodge to the north to get back out.”

He said state inspectors do regular examinations of bridges and provide reports on their conditions to state and local officials, and the county uses those reports to determine its priorities for repairs and upgrades.

“We moved these bridges up on our priority list because of the amount of traffic that Red Bridge Road is getting now,” he said. “Because of the additional traffic — not that they are undersized or anything like that — but just because of the additional traffic, we felt that these should be moved up in priority.”

Depending on weather and other circumstances, the work should be completed in about two months, Williams said. Neither the road or the bridges are expected to be completely shut down during the work. Instead, lights or county crews working as flaggers will direct traffic to one side of the road or bridges as needed.

According to its website, Hasse Contracting Co. has been in business since 1976 and has completed work for federal, state and local governments, as well as private property owners.

Senior Writer Lisa Dunlap can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 311, or at reporter02@rdrnews.com.