Thursday, February 4, 2010

State of Arkansas May I? Part 2

I wrote HERE about my efforts dealing with the State Hwy Dept to get an easement to build a bridge on the edge of our property boundary with the state to gain vehicular access to our hillside pasture.

The results were mixed. The guys that came out were pleasant, and in my opinion, reasonable. There are rules that they have to abide by. So here's what we worked out.

When they built I-540, the state put up a gate showing an old drive at the foot of our pasture, the state will recognize that as a common use access, much like the road to our house. The issue is how to get to that gate, and how to cross the creek.
The common use access can be seen just to the left of my elbow

Any use of a bridge will require a hydrological study by a civil engineering firm (ie. spend lots of $ for someone to tell me all the things that I already know) and be built to their standards. I'd also have to create a bond for the state to hold...etc, etc, etc. There's a valid point here though, that a bridge that gets swept away will tumble down creek and become the state's problem - as happened further south of here when a guy built a huge concrete bridge and it tumbled downstream into a state bridge off Hwy 71.

The state has no problem with me driving through the creek though, as long as we concrete the crossing point to mitigate erosion and they have a hand in the planning. They'll even let me use shale outcroppings from my land to build the road. Pretty reasonable. On top of this, I think there's a bedrock shelf about 6 inches in the current crossing spot, so we may be able to avoid concreting in the streambed all together.

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