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$25M Federal Grant Accepted for Verde Connect Project Featured

David McAtee, Yavapai County PIO August 23, 2020 629
This is a Photo Simulation of the proposed project. Photo Courtesy of Yavapai County Verde Connect Project information This is a Photo Simulation of the proposed project. Photo Courtesy of Yavapai County Verde Connect Project information

Verde Connect Grant Award Accepted by Board 

Big Idea:

  • The Yavapai County Board of Supervisors voted to accept a $25 million Federal Grant for the purpose of building the Verde Connect project
  • The Verde Connect road will allow for improved traffic circulation, increased access to hospitals and reduce emergency response times
  • 851 applications for a FY 2018 BUILD grant were submitted, and only 91 were selected - Yavapai County was the only recipient within Arizona
  • Yavapai County has been planning for this project for 30 years

 

A significant step towards the Verde Connect project was taken this week.

At the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors meeting on August 19, 2020, the Board voted to Approve a Grant Agreement for the Verde Connect project under the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) program and authorize the Yavapai County Public Works Director as signatory on other related non-contract grant documents.   

Yavapai County Board of Supervisors Vice-Chairman Randy Garrison said, “As we continue to grow, I am proud that Yavapai County and our partner Communities throughout the Verde Valley have come together to find solutions. The Verde Connect project is not only needed today but will provide another necessary option to our already overwhelmed rural routes. This will benefit every community in the Verde Valley, especially some of our smaller areas such as Cornville which has seen a tremendous increase in traffic. It hasn’t been easy, but together we can be proud to finally see this long-time vision become a reality.” 

This is what the area looks like at this time.

Yavapai County is excited moving forward and recognizes the benefit this road can bring to the Verde Valley as a whole. These benefits include:   

  • Reduced emergency response times  
  • Increased access to hospitals 
  • Improved traffic circulation  
  • Providing alternate routes of exit 
  • connection of communities divided by the river  
  • Increased distribution of high-speed broadband 
  • Providing additional access to Economic Opportunity Zones such as those identified within the Town of Camp Verde. 

In a culmination of thirty years of planning efforts, beginning in 1990 with the Town of Camp Verde Land Use and Transportation Study and ending most recently with the 2016 Verde Valley Master Transportation Plan, the Verde Connect Roadway Environmental Assessment has been approved with a finding of No Significant Impact issued by the Federal Highway Administration in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act process and other regulatory policies. 

Completion of the NEPA process now allows the County to enter into an agreement with the US Department of Transportation to obligate the $25M Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) Grant that Yavapai County was competitively selected for in 2018. Yavapai County submitted the grant application in July of 2018 with 12 letters of support from the Verde Valley communities as well as other political dignitaries. 

Yavapai County was the only recipient within the State of Arizona for the FY2018 BUILD program. 851 Applications nationwide were submitted to the USDOT and 91 grants out of the 851 were awarded. 

Yavapai County Public Works Director Dan Cherry said, “With the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors approving today (8/19) the acceptance of the grant agreement with USDOT obligating the $25M BUILD Grant, the County has paved the way for approval and issuance of the Request for Proposals (RFP) of Design-Build contractors.” 

The project cost associated with the grant agreement estimates the project cost at $31.5M of which $25M will be paid from federal dollars received from the BUILD grant. 
https://verdeconnect.com/

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Last modified on Sunday, 23 August 2020 19:26
Published in Verdevalley.news

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