Albuquerque to ramp up road, building construction during COVID-19 outbreak

Albuquerque News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – As Albuquerque feels empty with business closures, school closures and a stay-at-home order, the city says there’s no better time than now to get started early on millions of dollars in construction projects.

The city has a long list of both big and small road projects and building projects that are now about to get started weeks or months earlier than initially planned.

“There’s about $70-million in construction projects we are able to push up over the next six months, that we’re excited to get started on,” Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller said in a news conference Wednesday. Downtown, the city is already fast-tracking street repairs on some main roads including Lead Avenue and Lomas Boulevard.

Soon, the city is also slated to begin work on the Central Avenue underpass. The plan for that project includes sprucing up the notoriously dark and dingy area with new lighting.

Groundbreaking is expected shortly on an improved flood retention pond that will replace the current pond at Lomas and Broadway. The new retention pond will be relocated to a vacant city lot at Marble and Arno.

In Old Town, the city will start clearing out space for the long promised “Portland Loo,” a public bathroom that will sit in a public parking lot near the corner of Central Avenue and San Felipe.

One of the biggest city projects that will get underway soon will take shape at the Explora Science Center and Children’s Museum. The city will begins work on a planned $4-million dollar teen focused “X-Studio” as the museum property is currently off-limits to visitors.

Mayor Keller says there are no concern about funding for the projects. “Obviously the funding is all in place,” Keller said. “I do want to reiterate, we’re very concerned about things like our operating budget and future funding, this is already funding that’s been encumbered anyway.”

A few other road projects that will start early include street rehab on Rio Grande and on 4th Street. Those projects are expected to begin in May. The city is also expecting to break ground soon on the new roundabout at 12th and Menaul.

Three community focused buildings will also start seeing construction soon, including a new library on Central near Louisiana, and two new community centers in the “Singing Arrow” and “Westgate” neighborhoods.

The city’s Department Municipal Development has provided the following list of upcoming projects:

  • Projects currently under construction or starting in the next six months include:
  • International District Library
  • ADA upgrades throughout south east Albuquerque
  • Central Underpass pedestrian renovation
  • Median landscaping in key city locations
  • Singing Arrow Community Center
  • Marble/Arno Pump Station
  • Westside Community Center
  • Explora STEM Expansion
  • 12th and Menaul Intersection Improvements
  • Jennifer Riordan Sports Complex Field Six and New Signage
  • Pinned Medians along ART route
  • Railyard Utilities and streetscapes
  • Cross walk improvements
  • Convention Center Display Boards
  • HAWK Signal in Nob Hill
  • The City is also investing roughly $23 million into street rehabilitation and repaving across the city, $1.5 million in restriping existing roadway, and $1 million for median upgrades on West Central within the next six months.

New Mexico Coronavirus Resources

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