2 years later, Route 66 musical road changes its tune

TIJERAS, N.M. (KRQE) – On historic Route 66, there’s a portion of road that plays a melody when your vehicle drives over it. It plays “America the Beautiful.”

“It’s fun, especially for the children,” said one driver.

It’s been two years to the month since the musical rumble strips were installed by National Geographic and the New Mexico Department of Transportation.

“They selected that roadway partly for it’s beauty and to slow drivers down,” said Bernadette Bell with NMDOT.

But, a year and a half ago, drivers told KRQE News 13 the road was changing its tune, and on Monday they said the same thing.

“It is a little out of tune,” said a driver that frequents the highway.

DOT maintains the road.

“The indentations in the roadway are just as they were 2 years ago when it was installed,” said Bell. She said right now, the condition is fine.

But she said, “If and when the singing highway does begin to degrade we’ll take a look at it.” They will determine if it should either be resurfaced or maintained.

But, a group behind the Route 66 Revitalization Project would like to see more done to the musical part of the road.

“Actually outline where the rumble strips were cause unless you know exactly where they are, and it’s hard to see them, you’ll miss it,” said Roger Holden the President of Retro 66.

As president of Retro 66 which stands for ‘Re-live the Route’, Holden said they hope changes are made by 2019, when they will be celebrating Moriarity’s 66th birthday along the route.

“So New Mexico becomes a destination for Route 66 during the summer of 2019,” he said.

For now, DOT said the road will remain the way it is.

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