Yuma, Arizona - Noting the 16th Street and 4th Avenue intersection improvements project is a necessary public purpose, a Superior Court ruling issued today grants the City immediate possession of property on the intersection’s northeast corner, allowing the project to move forward as scheduled.

The ruling by Associate Presiding Judge David M. Haws grants the City immediate possession of three parcels of land at that corner, once the City posts a $715,725 bond. The amount represents the appraised value of the land, according to an independent fee appraiser who testified during the “order to show cause” hearing held April 27 and May 10.

The City posted the required bond on Wednesday.

“This project will continue without unnecessary delays or additional taxpayer expense,” said City Administrator Greg Wilkinson. “We are looking forward to the completion of the project early next year and expect to see more private construction in the next two months with new businesses and jobs at the Center Pointe intersection.”

The three parcels will be used for widening the intersection and for stormwater runoff improvements. The City had previously reached mutual agreements will all other property owners in the footprint of the intersection design.

“For the 16th Street and 4th Avenue project we were able to negotiate reasonable agreements with all but one of property owners in the area in order to move this long-awaited project forward,” Wilkinson said. “It is unfortunate that the City was forced into taking the condemnation path, but we are glad the court agreed with our position and granted possession of the property.”

Once complete, the 300-day project will ease the congestion commonly found at the intersection. Dedicated right-turn lanes and dual left-turn lanes will be added in all corners of the intersection, and 16th Street will expand in conjunction with the transportation element of the voter-approved General Plan, which calls for three lanes of through traffic to match the traffic lanes already from Arizona Avenue to Pacific Avenue. Bike lanes and water and stormwater improvements are included.