Crews worked Wednesday to complete bridge abutments and foundations for the U.S. Highway 40 railroad overpass, which is part of the Xcel Energy project to reconstruct a rail spur to transport coal to the Hayden Station Power Plant

Photo by Tom Ross

Crews worked Wednesday to complete bridge abutments and foundations for the U.S. Highway 40 railroad overpass, which is part of the Xcel Energy project to reconstruct a rail spur to transport coal to the Hayden Station Power Plant

CR 27 relocation finished

Xcel rail spur project near Hayden to continue in spring

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The relocation of Routt County Road 27 recently was completed. Crews, about ready to stop for the winter, will resume work in April.

— The relocation of Routt County Road 27, part of the Xcel Energy project to reconstruct an existing rail spur that will take coal to the Hayden Station Power Plant, is complete, according to a company spokesman.

This year’s portion of the project, which began in August, also includes construction of bridge foundations and abutments for a U.S. Highway 40 overpass and irrigation improvements and electric utility relocation at the Nature Conservancy-owned Carpenter Ranch. An additional layer of asphalt will be added to C.R. 27 in spring as part of the relocation project.

In addition to the road alignment completion, Xcel spokesman Mark Stutz wrote in an e-mail that the bridge foundation and abutment construction were done with the exception of three sets of piers on U.S. Highway 40 and the surface of the bridge. Construction of the piers and bridge surface projects will begin in spring, Stutz said.

Stutz said the electric utility relocation is about 75 percent done and is expected to be finished before construction stops for the winter in December.

This week, a contractor began the irrigation improvements at the Carpenter Ranch, Stutz wrote. Any work that is not completed before the December cutoff will resume in April.

The construction is about half a mile south of U.S. 40 on C.R. 27, also called Twentymile Road.

The spur will leave the Union Pacific Railroad main line three to four times a week with 115 cars per train and travel through a portion of the Carpenter Ranch across U.S. 40 and C.R. 27 to carry coal to the power plant.

In April when construction resumes, Stutz said the complete rail spur earthwork, including the retaining wall at the Carpenter Ranch, would begin. He said construction of the facility where the coal will be dumped from the train to a conveyer also would begin next spring.

The spur is expected to be completed by Oct. 31, 2011.

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