Montgomery speed cam MIA; balloonists block neighborhood - Albuquerque Journal

Montgomery speed cam MIA; balloonists block neighborhood

ANOTHER DAY, ANOTHER SPEED CAM BITES THE DUST: Back in July, days after it had been installed, someone stole the automated speed enforcement camera off its pole on Lead, and the city quickly removed the camera on Coal until it could figure out a better way to install the devices.

Now the Montgomery camera is gone.

CC emails “it looks as if the speed camera on (westbound) Montgomery Boulevard just west of Eubank no longer is in place. If so, can you let us know if this was removed by miscreants or by the city itself – perhaps to be relocated elsewhere?”

Removed by the city, because “miscreants” vandalized it.

Rebecca Atkins of the Albuquerque Police Department says “the Montgomery camera was vandalized and sustained minor damage. The device is currently being repaired. The administration is committed to the ASE program, and measures are being taken to provide additional security to them.”

She has said previously that the camera vendor, NovoaGlobal, picks up the tab for any damages or vandalism to the devices.

Meanwhile, “APD is investigating the vandalism. As the city is working on additional security for the device to include a camera monitoring it (a camera watching the camera), I do not have a definitive timeline when it will be back up.”

NINE CAMERAS STILL CLICKING: While the Montgomery camera is repaired, Atkins says, the Lead (westbound, at Mesa) and Coal (eastbound, at Cornell) cameras are back, rejoining ones on east- and westbound Gibson between Carlisle and San Mateo, on northbound Unser at Tower, and new ones on southbound San Mateo, northbound Unser at Western Trail, westbound Lomas at Virginia and westbound Central between Tingley and New York.

The camera system stopped issuing warnings Sept. 7 and now only issues the $100 civil citations (four hours of community service is an option). There were 2,629 tickets in June, 2,274 in July, 5,821 in August, and 2,952 in the first two weeks of September. Tickets are usually issued at 10 mph or more over the posted limit (5 mph or more in school and work zones).

BALLOONISTS CLOG MY NEIGHBORHOOD: Denise Gutierrez emails “city workers have been feverishly working for months” to get Vista Del Norte Park, a secondary balloon landing site at 1005 Osuna NE, ready for the massive event that kicked off Saturday.

That means “traffic signs are up on Osuna, Edith and Alameda. Guess where there are no traffic signs or an obvious traffic plan? Yup, you guessed it – in the adjoining Vista Del Norte Neighborhood. I am a 22-year resident of VDN, and here is the problem: There is only one way in and one way out of this neighborhood. Unless you know where you are going, the streets are a big maze. Just imagine thousands of cars, pedestrians, bicycles and chase crews speeding around lost in your neighborhood, your driveway is blocked by vehicles parked illegally, and no one is looking at the road. Each year I send emails to the mayor, City Councilor Brook Bassan and the police chief – and nothing changes.”

Scott Cilke with the city’s Department of Municipal Development says “if ever a car is illegally blocking your driveway, we encourage you to dial 311 and have parking services dispatched to your location. Otherwise, we will use the (2022) Balloon Fiesta to evaluate the need for additional signage in this area.”

Editorial page editor D’Val Westphal tackles commuter issues for the metro area on Mondays. Reach her at 823-3858;; or 7777 Jefferson NE, Albuquerque, NM, 87109.


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