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RR’s common sense saved millions

The improvements to Sara Road cost the city of Rio Rancho much less than was estimated. In fact, the estimates were that it would cost us – the taxpayers – $2.2 million and it actually cost under $1 million. It was also completed more quickly than planned.

The improvements to High Resort Boulevard also cost a lot less than estimated. It was estimated the reconstruction would cost $6.5 million; the reality was it cost about $4.3 million and was also completed in less time than anticipated.

So, under budget and on time. Wow! We don’t get to use those words very often when referring to government projects. And congratulations to the city, the taxpayers and all of us who drive on those roads.

In addition, not only did the city save more than $3 million, the $3 million will be added to the money allocated for the Southern Boulevard Revitalization Project. The first phase of the work on Southern, scheduled to begin next spring, will now be able to include work from NM 528 to Golf Course Road rather than just to May Circle. Great news.

Mayor Gregg Hull expressed his appreciation to the voters for their approval of the General Obligation bonds in March, 2016, which helped fund these projects.

He also explained how the city was able to obtain such savings on these two projects. He said that by doing the work during the winter and when oil prices were low, money was saved. Also, the city looked for ways to increase efficiency such as closing Sara Road completely for four days which gave the workers uninterrupted time to get work done more quickly. And, they were able to save some money with such things as using some of the existing curbs and gutters on High Resort. It sounds to us as if our city used a lot of good, common sense.

The mayor further explained that both of these roads are built to “great standards” using all current guidelines and material, and, while completing the work on High Resort, the city replaced all the infrastructure and put in new drainage pipes.

We are impressed. We hope this is an indication of good things to come. We know we can see and feel the positive results when we drive on these two roads. We believe this shows what an attentive and determined government can accomplish when working with the contractor and engineers, and the contractor and engineers must have been knowledgeable and professional to accomplish the required road revitalization and doing it efficiently.

Hull said, “Seeing both Sara and High Resort completed under estimates and on time was exciting; these projects are perfect examples of what can be achieved when we work together. Staff, the contractor and the engineers worked hard to complete these roads and get them back open. For that I say thank you. Now, on to Southern Boulevard.”

Remember this when a renewal of the General Obligation bonds comes up next March. In the meantime, maybe we should remember this for all levels of government. If a project can be completed in such a manner in Rio Rancho, N.M., surely the process can be replicated elsewhere.

Think of the money that could be saved in Washington D.C. with proper supervision and the desire to do things the right way, the common-sense way. Let’s hope that’s not just wishful thinking.

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