ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – Construction crews are re-configuring one of the busiest streets in Albuquerque for the third time in a decade.
“Crazy. That is the only way I can describe it,” said Sherif Porter-Park.
Porter-Park lives near Lead and Coal Avenues in downtown Albuquerque. She walks her dog around her neighborhood everyday and nearly everyday she said she runs into the same problem.
“People are just going so fast, so fast up and down the road,” said Porter-Park.
“There is a lot of traffic that comes off the freeway that goes downtown,” said Michael Sanchez.
Whether they are coming or going, the city said most of the drivers in the area are speeding.
“Because you know, heading down hill people tend to pick up speed,” said Department of Municipal Development Acting Director Melissa Lozoya.
The city has done a number of things to try and slow drivers down along Lead and Coal. Crews have reduced both streets from three lanes to two lanes, put in wider sidewalks and extended the curbs. On Wednesday, construction crews were back at it again.
“On Coal we are re-striping the roadway as a traffic calming measure,” said Lozoya.
Right now, each lane is about 12 feet wide. Once crews are done, the lanes will be about 11 feet wide.
“By narrowing lanes it has been studied and shown that people, their perception of how wide the lane is and how fast they go, they feel like they need to slow down when it is narrower,” said Lozoya.
The city will also add a buffer lane to make more more room between cars and bicyclists on Coal.
“To me, that’s a lot safer for them,” said Sanchez.
The city has also put up speed trailers throughout the area. City Councilor Isaac Benton has also tossed around the idea of cutting the speed limit from 30 to 25.
The re-striping on Coal Avenue should be complete by Monday, March 7. The city already re-striped Lead Avenue.
The total cost for the project is about $40,000.