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Intensive Archeological Survey Of Poison Oak Road Realignment City Of Temple, Bell County, Texas
Texas Historical Commission
The City of Temple has proposed the Poison Oak Road Realignment project, where an approximate 8,700-linear-foot road improvements and realignment will be constructed in southwest Temple, Bell County, Texas. The project engineer, Clark & Fuller, PLLC, retained Terracon Consultants, Inc. to conduct a systematic, intensive pedestrian survey of the approximate 20-acre project area. Because the City of Temple, a political subdivision of the State of Texas, sponsored the project, the proposed undertaking is subject to compliance with the Antiquities Code of Texas and oversight from the Texas Historical Commission. In addition, the survey meets the standards for compliance under Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, as amended, should a US Army Corps of Engineers permit be necessary or federal funding be utilized for the project. The cultural resources survey was carried out in advance of ground disturbance under Texas Antiquities Permit Number 8263, issued to Ann M. Scott, PhD, RPA, Principal Investigator. Fieldwork was carried out by Project Archeologist Caitlin Gulihur, MA, and Archeological Technician Juan Morlock under the supervision of Ann M. Scott. Records from the project will be curated at the Center for Archaeological Studies at Texas State University.
The 8,700-linear-foot alignment, with a 100-foot wide construction corridor (20 acres), was considered the Area of Potential Effect (APE). Survey of the APE consisted of systematic pedestrian coverage, including discretionary shovel tests. The work was carried out on January 4-5, 2018. Several hundred linear feet of the alignment were disturbed from previous construction of the existing Poison Oak Road and associated utilities. Several hundred more linear feet had good ground surface visibility. Fourteen shovel tests were excavated in areas that had less than 30 percent ground visibility or placed in areas that appeared to be undisturbed. No artifacts were discovered during the excavation of the shovel tests. One isolated historic-age feature was observed. No sites were recorded or revisited as a result of the survey. Therefore, there are no historic properties present within the project area. It is Terracon’s recommendation that there are no historic properties eligible for State Antiquities Landmark designation or National Register for Historic Places inclusion that will be affected by future construction of the proposed road improvements and realignment. In the unlikely event that human remains or intact cultural resources are discovered during construction, construction should cease in the vicinity of the remains and Terracon, the Texas Historical Commission’s Archeology Division, or other proper authorities should be contacted.
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