Storm cleanup set to cost city thousands of dollars

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Friday’s storm is going to cost the city hundreds of thousands of dollars. The city says it’s going to take time to fix everything that was damaged by the downpour and they have already taken precautions to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

Officials said Albuquerque does not see this type of rain damage often. They say some improvements are needed, but for now they are focused on repairing damages and preparing for more rain.

Friday’s storm dropped close to two and a half inches of rain in the mid-valley, cost the city over 700 manpower hours and thousands of dollars worth of damage.

“We’re probably in the range of $300,000 to $400,000 of expected damages now,” said Director of Municipal Development Michael Riordan.

Riordan said that includes overtime.

The pressure of the water was so great, bolted down manholes popped out of the ground, taking the pavement with it. Riordan counted about six on Broadway and one or two more elsewhere.

“We know one popped for sure and then, as soon as water gets in that level and undermines the roadway, it’s kind of hard to chase whether it was popped or if it was just the water from the one manhole got to the other ones,” said Riordan.

It’s created a mess on Broadway at Martin Luther King where traffic is confined to one lane in either direction. The repair work is expected to take two weeks to complete and that includes a re-paving project scheduled for next year.

Damage was also seen at the Civic Plaza Parking Garage.

“Our parking garage here, which was a significant effort here, we actually had a significant amount of debris come from third street and into our parking structure, three or four inches deep,” explained Riordan. That’s Third Street Construction.

The city is prepping for another round of storms.

“We have our pond here at Lomas and Broadway cleaned and ready, we’ve got our pumps that have been checked and are still working and then, securing our construction sites,” Riordan said.

Fifteen crew members available in rotating shifts.

Riordan said the pump systems worked the way they should have over the weekend, but said they could be more efficient especially at Broadway and Lomas. He said he wants to replace the five 50-year-old pumps at the Broadway and Lomas pump station and adds that they also need more storage space there. It’s a $22 million project.

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