Secretary Bernhardt Announces $83.7 Million Construction Award to Continue Work on Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project

Tribal and rural communities in northwestern New Mexico to receive clean and reliable water 

Last edited 09/12/2019

Date: September 12, 2019
Contact: Marlon Duke,
Barry Longwell,


WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of the Interior David Bernhardt today announced an $83.7 million construction contract for the Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project to bring clean and reliable water to tribal and rural communities in northwestern New Mexico. As part of the Department of the Interior, the Bureau of Reclamation’s water supply project is the cornerstone of the Navajo Nation San Juan River in New Mexico Water Rights Settlement Agreement. The contract was awarded to Oscar Renda Contracting, Inc., of Roanoke, Texas.  

“This award continues our important work to develop and modernize water infrastructure, honor the Department’s federal Indian trust responsibility and strengthen partnerships with tribal and local communities,” said Department of the Interior Secretary David Bernhardt. “Progress on this project is exciting; this award means most of the main line on the San Juan Lateral is either completed or under construction.”

Work under this contract will include construction of nearly 30 miles of 48-inch and 42-inch diameter pipeline spanning from the Navajo communities of Little Water to Naschitti, New Mexico. When completed, the San Juan Lateral of the Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project will provide water for municipal, industrial, and domestic use to Navajo communities in New Mexico, as well as the City of Gallup. 

“The Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project will bring a multitude of health and economic benefits to the Jicarilla Apache Nation and the Navajo Nation reservation communities in northwestern New Mexico,” said Interior Assistant Secretary – Indian Affairs Tara Katuk Sweeney.  “I congratulate all who worked to secure this funding for such a vital infrastructure project, which, when completed, will ensure that families, schools, businesses and health care facilities in these locales to have a reliable source of drinking water.  This project has been years in the making, and I am looking forward to its successful completion.”  

“Completing the Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project is a key priority for Reclamation as we work to improve water supplies for tribal and rural communities,” said Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman. “This latest contract, the largest contract awarded to date on the project, is a huge step in bringing water to the area. I look forward to completing the project and celebrating with others who have helped make this project a reality.” 

Work is also proceeding along the Cutter Lateral, the other main pipeline for this project. Reclamation anticipates that the first project water will be delivered through that system next summer. 

“The Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project will be transformative for communities in the Navajo Nation, the Jicarilla Apache Nation, and Gallup. Over the last decade, I’ve been proud to fight for the major federal investments necessary to finally deliver long-term clean drinking water supplies to thousands of families throughout northwestern New Mexico,” said Senator Martin Heinrich (D-NM). “The construction of this major project is also creating jobs and promoting economic development throughout the region. I will continue working to uphold the federal commitments in the historic Navajo Nation Water Rights Settlement Agreement and ensure that our communities in Indian Country have the resources they need to thrive.”

Work under this contract will begin in January 2020 and is expected to last for approximately 2 years. Construction on this stretch of the pipeline will be visible from U.S. Highway 491.

The Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project will provide a long-term, reliable water supply for 43 chapters on the Navajo Reservation, the southwest area of the Jicarilla Apache Reservation, and the City of Gallup, New Mexico. When completed, it will include approximately 300 miles of pipeline, two water treatment plants, 19 pumping plants, and multiple water storage tanks.  

For additional information, visit the US Burea or Reclamation Navajo-Gallup Water Supply Project.


Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier in the United States, and the nation's second largest producer of hydroelectric power.  Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits.  Visit the US Burea or Reclamation and follow us them Twitter @USBR.

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