ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – It’s back to the drawing board for a major re-do of Coors. From neighbors to businesses, it turns out the massive plan had a lot of doubters and now the city is hitting the brakes.
“I was quite surprised but happily so,” Rene Horvath, who works with the Taylor Ranch Neighborhood Association said.
At least seven years in the making, the Coors Corridor Plan would have revamped the 11-mile stretch from Bridge in the South Valley all the way north to Alameda.
The plan called for dedicated bus lanes, an elevated roadway at Coors and Montano and a sort of express ramp from I-40 and Coors north up to St. Josephs.
The Environmental Planning Commission gave it the green light in January. City councilors Klarissa Peña, Dan Lewis and Ken Sanchez, who all represent the affected areas, weren’t convinced.
“For myself, I wasn’t ready to move forward,” Sanchez said.
“There needs to be additional discussions, we need to meet with the business community. We need to meet with the neighborhood associations to find out what they would like to have done.”
There were quite a few hearings over the last two years and some of the big concerns were losing the view of the Bosque and Sandias, as well as widening Coors too much, putting the road in the backyards of homes and businesses and cutting them off.
“A lot of people have done a lot of work for the past two years but why move forward with a plan when you’re going to have so much opposition?” Sanchez asked. “It’s got to be done properly, it’s got to be done right.”
Just about everyone realizes non-stop growth on the West Side.
“Let’s come up with a transportation plan that is going to work and that the neighborhoods are going to be happy with,” Horvath said.
“We need to make some changes but the vision is we all need to work on this together.”
Down the road, expect more public hearings and years of studies and planning. There’s no price tag yet on what a Coors makeover could cost.
One project is still on the drawing board – a flyover from Coors to eastbound Paseo del Norte, a spot known for its awful backup during the morning commute. Money is the holdup on that project.