Secretary Salazar, Navajo Nation President Shelly, and other
Leaders Break Ground on Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar and Commissioner Michael L. Connor led the historic groundbreaking on June 2, 2012, of the Navajo Gallup Water Supply Project near Gallup, New Mexico. They were joined by Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly in keynoting the event. Other speakers included Jicarilla Apache Nation President Levi Pesata, U.S. Senators Jeff Bingaman and Tom Udall, Navajo Nation Council Speaker Johnny Naize, New Mexico State Engineer Scott Verhines and Gallup Mayor Jackie McKinney.
The ceremony was held on the marked centerline of Reach 12A of the project. That four-mile reach is the actual first construction of a project that will be completed by the end of 2024. Over time, a number of reaches spanning about 280 miles will be under simultaneous construction by Reclamation, the Indian Health Service, the Navajo Nation, and the city of Gallup. Additional construction will include two water treatment plants and several pumping plants. When complete, the project will provide a long-term sustainable water supply to meet the critical needs of more than 43 Navajo chapters, Gallup, and an area of the Jicarilla Apache Nation.
Construction will put over 400 people to work, with a construction peak several years out of over 650 workers. The overall positive economic impact of the project was lauded by every speaker.
For more information: