Doña Ana County



Construction has begun on a water-line extension that will serve up to 80 residents along Watson Lane, just south of Las Cruces.

Using $120,000 in legislative appropriations administered by the Doña Ana County Grants Department, Bauer Construction Company of La Mesa will lay new lines along almost a mile of Watson Lane, as well as shorter line extensions on Wingfield Road and Argus Street in the same neighborhood.

Installation of the water lines caps a five-year push by residents of the area to have access to safer water supplies than the area’s shallow wells have been able to provide. Denny Rogers, manager of the Jornada Water Company said residents who hook up to the line will be required to disconnect well water from their residences as part of the agreement to receive service.

Rogers said each hook-up will cost about $413 for meter installation, plus whatever costs are associated with running a feeder line from the new extension to the participating home. The feeder-line costs, he said, can vary widely from one home to another, depending on how far a residence is set back from the street and whether paving has to be torn up and replaced to facilitate the hook-up.

Renata Manning-Gbogbo, senior grants administrator for the county, said Bauer Construction has 60 days to complete installation of the main lines. Rogers said residents will then be able to submit applications for hook-up. Once an application is approved, Rogers said, the resident will be able to contract with a licensed plumber to run the lines and have the Jornada Water Company install the meter.

Manning-Gbogbo said residents of the area should expect moderate to heavy road work during the installation process, and she warned that some roads or road segments may be closed during the construction period. Commuters who use the roads, she said, should seek alternate routes for the next two months.

Manning-Gbogbo said the legislative funding for the project came about after about 60 residents of the area petitioned State Rep. J. Paul Taylor for project funding. That funding, she said, was appropriated by the 1998 Legislature, paving the way for contract negotiations.