Road work to halt for State Fair, Balloon Fiesta

BREAK IN THE CONSTRUCTION ACTION:

As the New Mexico State Fair, Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta and holiday shopping season – and all the resultant traffic – near, it is time once again for a road construction moratorium in certain parts of town.

It, and weather, are the big reasons so very much of the Metro-area’s road work is done in the summer and orange barrels pop up like weeds after a monsoon. Now is the time of year we trade orange barrels for out-of-towners and Black Friday maniacs.

Johnny Chandler, public information coordinator for the city’s Department of Municipal Development, explains in a news release that “The Department of Municipal Development wants to make sure that all the roadways are clear and available for roadway users headed to and from these events. The construction moratorium adds more stringent control of construction and barricading activities within public right-of-ways by adding additional restrictions that are not currently in effect.”

And that means:

• Today through Sept. 16 there will be the New Mexico State Fair Moratorium. That includes all streets bounded by, and including Menaul on the north, Pennsylvania on the east, Southern Blvd., on the south and San Mateo Blvd., on the west, “plus key arterial and collector routes commonly used by attendees of this event.”

• From Oct. 1 through Oct. 14 is the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta Moratorium. That includes all streets bounded by, and including, Roy/Tramway on the north, Interstate 25 on the east, Osuna on the south and Second on the west, “plus key arterial and collector routes commonly used by attendees of this event.” Additionally, the moratorium applies to the Old Town area, the Uptown area – Winrock and Coronado Shopping Malls – and the northwest area – Cottonwood Shopping Mall.

• From Nov. 21 through Jan. 1 is the Holiday Shopping Moratorium. That includes in the “Old Town area all streets bounded by, and including, Mountain on the north, 19th on the east, Central on the south and Rio Grande on the west, “plus key arterial and collector routes commonly used by shoppers to this area.”

Also, in the Uptown area all streets bounded by, and including, Menaul on the north, Pennsylvania on the east, Interstate 40 on the south and San Pedro on the west, “plus key arterial and collector routes commonly used by shoppers to this area.”

And in the Northwest and Downtown areas – you guessed it – “key arterial and collector routes commonly used by shoppers in these areas.”

WHAT AM I NOT ENTERING ON ALAMEDA? G. Filion emails “there’s a ‘Do Not Enter’ sign in the median on eastbound Alameda some distance past Ellison that has been there for years, but it’s not apparent what we are not to enter as there’s no point of entry near this sign. The sign is clearly facing the eastbound traffic. Do you have any clue what this sign is restricting entry to?”

Chandler does. He says the sign “is from a time period on Alameda before the median was installed at that location. City of Albuquerque Traffic Engineering thanks this community member for bringing this to our attention, and we are going to remove that now unnecessary sign.”

IN THE DARK UNDER THE BIG I: Bill Lord reports via email that “there used to be coordinated color lights on three sections of columns under the Big I that are no longer working. Could you check on those?

Diane Wikler, marketing manager/public information officer for the city’s Solid Waste Department, did. On Aug. 21 she said “the Solid Waste Management Department is currently evaluating the technology available for this project as well as the costs associated with revamping the lights.”

And as of Aug. 27, “The Solid Waste Management Department has repaired all but one of these lights. We are continuing to work on this.”

Editorial page editor D’Val Westphal tackles commuter issues for the Metro area on Mondays. Reach her at 823-3858; dwestphal@abqjournal.com; or P.O. Drawer J, Albuquerque, N.M. 87103.