ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Patchwork along a major highway has some drivers saying, “I could have done that myself.” When you look at the wall, it’s clear something doesn’t quite match up, but NMDOT says their crews do the best with what they have.
Mountain and I-25 is a known spot for vehicle crashes. “We’re not sure what kind of accident occurred at that location,” says NMDOT Spokesperson Kimberly Gallegos.
Department of Transportation officials say whatever happened left the wall in bad shape. “So we’ve gone ahead and patched it to match that design aesthetically as close as we can,” Gallegos says.
But the patchwork has some scratching their heads. “It’s a little janky,” says Candolin Cook.
“The folks who repaired it could have done a better job making that section of the wall match it before and after,” says John Cornish of Albuquerque.
NMDOT officials say it costs too much to redo the entire wall, so they try and match it the best they can. “It’s not always 100%, but it is a lot more cost-effective and as long as we know the wall is structurally sound, crews get out here and match it as close as it can be,” Gallegos says.
Engineers have examined the wall and determined that it is safe. But some drivers would like them to take a second look. “That section of the wall needs to be repaired again so it looks a lot nicer,” Cornish says.
However, others find it kind of charming. “In the construction business, we call it Mickey Mouse style. If you just got a couple of loose screws and some duct tape, you just get it together and get it fixed up with what you do,” said Ry Warner, who’s currently visiting Albuquerque.
But despite the mismatch, “Overall, I think we have a beautiful highway system,” Cook says.
DOT officials say there are patches like this one all around I-40 and I-25. Crews typically do patchwork within 72 hours of the damage happening. They say they’ve added warning signs, flashing lights, even rumble strips to slow drivers down for the stoplight at Mountain.