Archaeological Investigations Along McDowell Road, Mesa Drive to Gilbert Road, Mesa, Maricopa County, Arizona (TR2011-2) (PDF)
Test excavations resulted in the identification of two archaeological features, each assigned a new site number: SRPMIC-116 and SRPMIC-117. The identification of these resources, together with the negative results of testing, defined the limits of monitoring as lying along McDowell Road roughly between the newly recorded SRPMIC-116 (western limit) and the eastern boundary at Gilbert Road (eastern limit). Subsequent monitoring of the McDowell Road Improvements Project corridor resulted in the identification of nine additional prehistoric features. In total, testing and subsequent monitoring identified 11 features: 3 canals (5 exposures likely representing 3 individual canals), 2 possible pithouses, 1 deposit of burned structural debris, 1 roasting/cooking activity area, 2 isolated hearths that may be associated with structures or extramural activity areas, and 2 pits.
The features were distributed in three relatively discrete groupings assigned to the aforementioned SRPMIC-
116 and SRPMIC-117, and to the previously recorded AZ U:9:201 (ASM), now also numbered SRPMIC-120. Located west of Harris Road, SRPMIC-116 is comprised of six features, and appears to represent a small habitation site. SRPMIC-117 is located near the eastern limits of the project area, proximate to Gilbert Road, and is comprised of two canals. These canals were located very near where prehistoric Canal Mesa and the historic Utah Ditch are projected to cross both McDowell Road and one another. Because the general character of the exposed canals appeared prehistoric, they were given the site designation SRPMIC-117, representing the Canal Mesa system. SRPMIC-120, located just east of Harris Road, represents an extension of U:9:201, previously defined as an agriculturally focused habitation area with associated canals. Newly identified resources located within the McDowell Road corridor included two possible habitation-related features and one canal, complementing features previously recorded at U:9:201.
In addition to the sites identified above, a single isolated occurrence of cultural material, a large prehistoric sherd, was recorded near the western limit of the project area. The area surrounding this isolated find was inspected for associated cultural deposits or materials, but none were found.