ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – People living along the Lead-Coal corridor say they’ve been dealing with speeders along with deadly and destructive crashes for too long. They vented their frustrations to city councilors Tuesday.
Eli Sanchez was the first of many to speak at Monday’s city council meeting – pleading with councilors to do something about the problems along the Lead-Coal corridor. “I witness a type of high impact crashes that occur in my neighborhood that you might expect to see on I-25 or I-40,” said Sanchez.
This isn’t a new issue. Dozens of crashes have happened in that area over the last five years, as a result of speeding. Monday night, people living along the corridor brought visual aids to the city council, hoping to finally get their point across — that they’re fed up. “One that still remains in my mind and haunts me is when a guy on a motorcycle was hit and flew in the air and hit a light post and was killed.”
Some also say they fear for their lives. “I’ve almost been hit in my own yard just doing yard work when a car crashes.”
One woman says a crash caused structural damage to her house when a light fixture landed on her front porch. “It is a problem and I would suppose I’m pretty angry and I am pretty angry about that because we’ve been fighting this for so many years I can’t tell you.”
City councilors called on the director of municipal development to take the podium to reassure people something is being done to address the problem “One of the things we’re working with a consultant is to look at other ways to improve the stop signs themselves from on those side streets,” explained Patrick Montoya.
Councilor Pat Davis says a smart signal pilot project that’s been in the works for two years could finally help. “It means everybody gets a red light unless you’re going the speed limit. As a car’s approaching, if it’s speeding, the light stays red until they stop and have to start again.”
The city had hoped to install the lights along with Lead and Coal around the end of last year, but supply chain issues delayed things. Now, Davis believes things are back on track. “Our update as late as last night is that the city’s engineers think we’re almost 2/3s of the way there which means we should be ready to see the first of these hopefully before school starts later this summer.”
Money for the $300,000 smart signals is coming from state and city funds.