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Unser looks bare near Rust

NO UNSER LANDSCAPING IN RIO RANCHO: Joan Taylor called to say that as the city of Albuquerque is landscaping Unser around McMahon, the stretch north into Rio Rancho is looking more bare.

She says as she has watched the work progress she keeps “hoping Rio Rancho would landscape” the portion of Unser going north in front of the new hospital to Southern.

Hope is all there is for now.

Peter Wells, communications officer for the city of Rio Rancho, says “there are no forthcoming projects for median landscaping in this area. Any future work would be subject to available funding.”


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MORE ON THAT CAR AND BIKE SIGN ON COORS: Last week a reader asked about the orange, diamond-shaped signs in the construction zone along Coors between MontaƱo and St. Joseph that have a car and a bike, separated by a vertical line. It isn’t in the state driver’s license handbook or the national Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices. But a cycling advocate guessed the sign advised cyclists to stay in the right lane in the construction zone.


Phil Gallegos, who handles information for NMDOT, says “that sign I am told is used to separate cars and bicycles during paving while there is no white stripe to delineate the bike path.”

FREE CAR-SEAT CHECKUPS: There’s still time for parents and caregivers to get those car seats checked for integrity and proper installation on the West Side.

On Monday, Aug. 26., the New Mexico Department of Transportation’s Traffic Safety Division, Safer New Mexico Now and Kohl’s will have a child safety-seat clinic in the store’s Cottonwood Corners parking lot.

A news release says the clinic, from 4 to 6 p.m., “will provide parents and caregivers the opportunity to receive hands-on instruction from certified technicians on the correct use of child safety seats. Technicians educate parents on choosing and installing the appropriate child safety seat for their child and vehicle. They can also determine if a seat is recalled, expired, or otherwise unsafe.”

State law requires everyone under age 18 to be buckled in. Children under one year must be in a rear-facing car seat in the back seat (if the vehicle has one). All kids under 5 and all kids under 40 pounds must be in a car seat or booster seat. All kids age 5 and 6 and all kids under 60 pounds must be in a car seat or booster seat. And all kids 12 and younger must be in a car seat, booster seat, or bucked in with a seat belt.

And using a car seat is just the half of it. According to Safer, three out of four car seats are used incorrectly, placing the young passenger at risk in the event of a crash.


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The Aug. 26 checkups are free and take just 30 minutes. Bring your seat and, if possible, your child so technicians can make a thorough evaluation.

For more info, call 856-6143 or (800) 231-6145.

Assistant editorial page editor D’Val Westphal tackles commuter issues for the Metro area on Mondays and West Siders and Rio Ranchoans on Saturdays. Reach her at 823-3858;; P.O. Drawer J, Albuquerque, N.M. 87103; or go to to read previous columns and join in the conversation.