New Transportation building on Sheepskin.
By ROSELYNN YAZZIE
FORT HALL — The Transportation Department Administration Office is now located in their new permanent building on Sheepskin Road.
They should officially be moved in by end of the month and they plan to host an open house once that happens.
They purchased a modular structure from the Tribes that was formerly used during the Shoshone-Bannock Casino Hotel construction. Their old office was a house located on Reservation Road, which was rented from the Shoshone-Bannock Enterprises since 2004. The new space will allow for them to save money since they will no longer be paying rent.
The building was purchased with funds from the Bureau of Indian Affairs and Federal Highway Agency. Everything done at the new site was all done in house, including the waterline, sewer line and electrical. Planning for the new site was done by Brooks Davis and Kendall Edmo, along with Cultural Resource Department Larae Bill and Carolyn Smith.
“I think it’s in a better location than being out there,” said Anthony Pete Broncho, Transportation manager. “We’re closer to our Transit office as well.”
Technical Service Manager Richard Thompson explained they have had the new location, which is approximately five acres, since 2007, which was given by the Fort Hall Business Council. The area was to be used for gravel and to build a new shop that will eventually house all of Roads and Transit, essentially making it so everything can be done in house.
The new building has four offices and also includes space for a conference room, kitchen area, and two restrooms. The building is well built and was initially built to be used in Alaska, it cost about $100,000.
Broncho said they’re always looking for a conference room and have often had to go looking for space to utilize.
Another benefit is their new office is ADA compliant, which was a problem at the other location. When elders would come over it was hard for them to get in.
The Transportation Department will soon be looking at buying their own painter, which will be utilized to paint the roads instead of having an outside source do it.
They’re already started preparing for winter road maintenance and are ready to go.