A waste-water pipe construction project that began Monday in Santa Rita Park will allow the city of Durango to rebuild a portion of the Animas River Trail at little cost.
The project is required by the Bureau of Reclamation, the federal agency that is building the Animas-La Plata Project. The agency requires that effluent water treated at the city's waste-water plant in the park not enter the intake to the future Lake Nighthorse at the Animas-La Plata pumping station, just downstream.
When complete, the new 30-inch line will discharge treated water 1,893 feet away at the Santa Rita Bridge.
Public Works Director Jack Rogers said the construction will require demolition of the asphalt river trail segment for the length of the line replacement. Newer standards require a 10-foot wide concrete trail, drain culverts and drop inlets.
Construction on the trail is included as part of the $725,000 price tag the city is charging to the Bureau of Reclamation. However, dark-skies compliant lights and the relocation of park benches will be paid from the 1999 river trail sales-tax fund.
Construction is expected to last about three months, and sections of the Animas River Trail will be closed at various times throughout with posted detours.