Crews working to catch up on Diamond Drive Phase 3

-A A +A
By Jennifer Garcia

In an effort to get back on schedule, RMCI Inc. crews working on the Diamond Drive Phase 3 project will be out seven days a week, instead of the regular five days that they have been working.

For the past few weeks, the contractor has been about two weeks behind schedule on the project. As a result, crews have begun working from 7 a.m.-6:30 p.m. Monday through Sunday in an effort to get the project back on track.

Project Manager Rey Gonzales said that poor weather, hard rock and a late start have all contributed to the contractor falling behind schedule.

Crews began the seven-day workweek last week.

Crews began work on Phase 3 in May, however problems with striping equipment put them behind schedule.

At that time, the equipment used for removing the existing striping was broken and needed to be fixed before crews could begin striping work for the start of the project.

Now, in hopes of getting back on track, the contractor has broken the crews up into four groups, with the first two crews working Sunday through Wednesday and the second two crews working Wednesday through Saturday.

Except for the July 4th weekend, crews will work seven days a week until the project is back on schedule.

“We have to meet key dates and we have to be able to get traffic on one side of the road by mid-August,” Gonzales explained. “We’re picking up speed and we have additional utility crews out there,” he said. Gonzales said that traffic continues to flow smoothly and without incident through the work zone.

The contractor is installing utilities on the west side of the road along the sidewalk and curbing work also continues on the west side of the Pueblo fill embankment. New fencing is also being installed on the west side of the fill embankment.

In addition, Sycamore will open later this week with a target date of Friday. 40th and Urban will be closed early next week. Additional information will be provided to residents on 40th Street and Urban in advance of the closure. The dates may fluctuate due to potential weather or mechanical delays.

According to county documents, the New Mexico Department of Transportation informed the county that the Federal Highway Administration Division Office in Santa Fe is still reviewing the overall project documentation on the project and its bid/award/NTP schedule for overall FHWA/AARA compliance.

No decision has been made by FHWA. NMDOT expects to hear a response from FHWA on whether or not they are going to authorize ARRA funding for the Diamond project.

For now, the NMDOT recommends that the county continue preparing Amendment No. 2 to the contract agreement between the county and RMCI.

The NMDOT also indicated that FHWA might have some additional requirements that may need to be added to Amendment No. 2. Staff continues to provide weekly updates on the project through the county administrator to council.

For more information on the Diamond Drive Phase III project, visit www.losalamosnm.us/projects/publicworks/Pages/DiamondDrive.aspx.