BUTTE – The opening of Butte’s new homeless shelter may be delayed even further as construction crews battle the elements and hard ground.
“Probably a week-long project that’s going to be three weeks or three and a half weeks by the time we get through it,” said Tom Moritz of Hoffman’s R&M Construction.
They first have to get through a layer of hard granite in order to lay 380 feet of sewage line before the Butte Rescue Mission’s new homeless shelter can open at the end of East Platinum Street.
“Usually the last three and half, four feet are granite. The top eight to 10 feet are digging alright, but the bottom is just hard,” said Moritz.
Butte has been without a homeless shelter for more than a year since the original shelter building on East Second Street was closed due to fire code violations. After many ups and downs, the mission finally found a new location, but setbacks continue to delay the opening.
“The weather conditions have been tough on us, the late start in the project wasn’t in our favor, it’s just been a tough go,” said Moritz.
Rescue mission officials were hoping to have the shelter open by this fall, but they ran into many delays and know the sewer project will add to that delay and to the expense.
“We’re about two weeks behind on the sewer project end of it alone. We’ve still managed to move on with the retaining wall and some of the other work on site, but we’re really far behind on the sewer end of the project,” said Moritz.
They had to rent a special jackhammer to get through the hard rock.
Reporting by John Emeigh for MTN News