Texas Historical Commission
On March 15, 2018, TxDOT conducted an intensive archeological survey for the proposed to FM 186 roadway improvement project. The project consists of a minor road widening This proposed project would widen FM 186 from two 12-ft. wide travel lanes with 2-ft. wide shoulders to two 12-ft. wide travel lanes with 4-ft. wide shoulders for approximately 8.8 miles along FM 186 from Castellaw Road to the FM 186 terminus in Dimmit County, Texas. Culvert replacements are planned for seven small tributary streams along the APE. No new ROW or easements are proposed for the project. Given the limited ground disturbing impacts for shoulder widening undertaking and no new ROW, the majority of the APE is considered low probability. The culvert replacement locations within the APE were considered moderate probability. One previously recorded sites 41DM52 is located approximately 300 feet east of the FM 186 ROW in the northern portion of the APE. A second previously recorded site, 41DM63, is mapped within the APE in the southern portion of the APE. The APE at and near these sites were considered high probability. A survey methodology was designed based on this simple probability model.
A 100 percent pedestrian survey was conducted at areas of moderate and high probability which included seven culvert replacement/ extension locations, the area of site 41DM63, and the APE near site 41DM52. The remainder of the low probability APE was subjected to reconnaissance. The pedestrian survey noted significant ground disturbing impacts from prior grading and road construction as well as utility installation. Given the shallow and denuded soils across the Eocene surface on which the APE is located, no shovel testing was conducted given the geologic context, surface visibility, and prior impacts which together constitute reasonable variance from the CTA/THC Survey Standards. In the area of 41DM63, no artifacts whatsoever were noted within the ROW. No cultural materials or features were observed within the ROW west of site 41DM52 nor were any foundat any of the culvert replacement locations.
A TxDOT archeologist evaluated the potential for the proposed undertaking to affect archeological historic properties (36 CFR 800.16(l)) or State Antiquities Landmarks (13 TAC 26.12) for the proposed FM 186 roadway improvement and bridge replacement project. Based on the pedestrian survey of the APE, no archeological sites or materials were observed in the proposed project area despite the ATLAS mapping of 41DM63 extending into the ROW. In addition, the majority of the APE had been substantively impacted by prior transportation construction and utilities. Based on these observed impacts and the results of the survey, any sites in the APE would likely lack sufficient integrity of location, association, and materials to be able to address important questions of prehistory or history (36CFR60.4 and would not be considered eligible for listing to the NRHP (36 CFR 60.4) or for designation as a SAL (13 TAC 26.8) and no further work is warranted for the project area.
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