Most Viewed Stories
Street repair plan urged for San Luis
SAN LUIS, Ariz. — Seventy percent of this city's streets are in bad condition, and without maintenance soon, many will have to be rebuilt completely.
That's according to San Luis City Councilman Joe Harper, who recently called for the city to adopt and put in motion a formalized street improvement schedule.
“That problem is that nobody has had a plan, and we need one urgently,” Harper said at a recent council meeting. “Up to now, things have been done only when a pothole is noticed here or there, or because people complain.”
A plan, he added, “would be to determine where upcoming projects would be done, where money would be spent (for street maintenance), but there are some streets where we already need to do something.”
Among those in bad condition are downtown, including Avenue B and 1st Street, Harper said.
San Luis Public Works Director John Starkey said the city's problem stems not from lack of roadwork planning but rather resources to do the work.
“I agree with Councilman Harper,” Starkey told the council, “the city hasn't done many large maintenance projects lately, but that's because we don't have the staff nor the equipment for major repairs. We have to do it through contracts, and that's more costly.”
Starkey said the city recently completed road projects in the downtown, resurfaced Hidalgo Street and streets in one of the city's oldest subdivisions — Plaza — with money from federal Community Development Block Grants that the city receives every two years.
The only other source of funding for street work, however, is the city's share of revenue from the state's tax on gasoline and diesel fuel sales, he said. This year, that amounts to about $2 million.
“The problem is the funds. Improving streets is very expensive. Councilman Harper is welcome to help establish a program, but all that will accomplish is that we will organize the limited funds that we have.”
The limitations on funds have been such that “we haven't been able to set aside money for (major projects), so we don't see large street projects. The only thing that we have been able to do is the minor repairs.”