City rips up portion of newly paved Central for storm drain project

Albuquerque News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – It was just a few years ago that Central Avenue was dug up to make way for the ART project — new sidewalks, new streets, and new water lines. But now, that new road is being dug up again.

The city says it’s all part of their storm drain project. After major flooding in Martineztown and Downtown over the past 15 years, the city had to fix the problem.

The storm drains will work to minimize flooding on Central under the railroad tracks. But people who KRQE News 13 spoke to are scratching their heads.

“I think it’s frustrating because, as taxpayers, we paid for it once… and we’re paying for it again. And it didn’t even have time to age,” said Don Lovato.

“I think if it’s been over two years it’s unnecessary,” Charissa Worthington said.

They’re wondering why the work is being done after ART construction is complete. “It seems like while they had it dug up, you would think that they would have planned it better,” said Lovato.

However, the city says there’s a perfectly good reason the two projects weren’t done at the same time. The plans and the funding for the project weren’t even complete until after the ART was done — and say the scheduled timeline was always now.

The city says it’s been working quickly to get the project done before the ART buses are up and running. For now, as the ART drivers continue their training, they’ll have to go around the EDO station, just like everyone else.

The city says this phase of the project is costing around $200,000. It will be wrapped up and repaved by Sep. 17, and that will be the end of the work on Central.

Crews are not digging up the westbound concrete ART lane, only the lane for regular westbound traffic.

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