Ridges Basin Dam Contract Awarded

Media Contact: Ken Beck, (970) 385-6558
Barry D. Wirth, (801) 524-3774

For Release: December 23, 2003

(DURANGO, CO) - The Bureau of Reclamation announced today that Weeminuche Construction Authority (WCA) has been awarded a $17,814,300 construction contract for constructing certain elements of Ridges Basin Dam.

WCA will be responsible for excavating material which covers Ridges Basin Dam foundation rock from the structure's left abutment to the center of the dam and a portion of its right abutment. To expose the foundation rock, approximately 2,300,000 cubic yards of material will be removed. The excavated material will be stockpiled for future use, incorporated into Basin Creek Improvement features, or disposed of in the reservoir basin.

The contract also tasks WCA with constructing various permanent access roads and other haul roads which will be used during construction of the dam.

Drop Structure 4, a feature of the Basin Creek Improvements, is being constructed as a water impoundment to temporarily serve as part of the storm water management plan. This structure will later become one of thirteen drop structures constructed on Basin Creek to improve the creek's ability to transport release flows from the dam back to the Animas River by dissipating energy and minimizing sediment.

WCA, a commercial construction enterprise owned and operated by the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, has been selected to build the project. WCA was formed in 1985 by the Tribal Council of the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe and qualifies as a minority business contractor. All projects contracted by WCA are done so on a non-union basis with a maximum use of Indian laborers and craftsmen. Additional skilled craft workers from the local area workforce are contracted to compliment WCA's staff allowing the company to handle projects over a wide range of disciplines. WCA does business in all of the Four Corner states.

WCA's previous experience includes construction of the Towaoc Canal, a Dolores Project feature that brings water to the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe from McPhee Reservoir; major septic and water system improvements in Mesa Verde National Park; and construction and development of laterals for the Dolores Project. They have also constructed other major features of the Animas-La Plata Project.

Reclamation will provide current information on construction activities at www.uc.usbr.gov, then click on the Animas-La Plata Project icon.

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