ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – As the I-25/Paseo makeover hits full stride, bicyclists are worried they have been forgotten in the plans.
At a meeting at city hall Monday night, they claimed that the way the plans are now could get them killed.
“It’s unsafe. It’s just flat-out unsafe,” said Steve Mathias, chair of the Greater Albuquerque Bicycling Advisory Committee (GABAC).
He said he is frustrated with the plan, which has gone from a bridge for cyclists over the whole interchange, to a mix of crosswalks, sidewalks and a smaller bridge.
“There are a lot of studies showing that riding against traffic on a bicycle is the single best way to get yourself injured or killed,” Mathias said.
The contractor disagrees, saying while some of it may be inconvenient, the paths will be safe.
“They meet all the safety requirements for providing a usable facility and for providing safe crossings at the locations where there are any conflicts,” said Bert Thomas, senior vice president with Bohannan Huston.
Thomas said there won’t be a bicycle bridge that crosses the whole interchange because they planned for a trail system for both cyclists and people walking, and because a bike bridge doesn’t fit into the budget.
“The bike route as is being requested really needs to be looked at as another project,” Thomas said.
He said he will continue to get public feedback until the project is finished, but any changes would have to stay within the basic footprint of the current plan.