Central Avenue loses and gains trees in transit project

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The City of Albuquerque says the latest changes to come to the proposed Rapid Transit Project include parts of Central Avenue losing trees and other parts of it gaining trees.

“At some point there was a lot more trees and then for reasons where they [were] included, we’d like some more parking along the street,” said Gilbert Montaño, spokesperson for Office of the Mayor. “We’ve had to remove some tree options, so now, at the very minimum we will have a one for one tree.”

According to a map from the city showing tree removal and replacement, the area of West Central from Coors to Atrisco Drive will gain about 30 trees from what is currently in existence. The part of town that will lose the most amount of trees is along Central from west of San Mateo to Louisiana Boulevard.

The organization, MakeArtSmart which is just one group suing the City of Albuquerque in Federal Court said they aren’t surprised by the latest alteration to the plan from the mayor.

“To plant immature trees on one side of the route and then eliminate a cluster of trees on another part of the route is not what the public thought was going to happen,” said Yolanda Gallegos from MakeArtSmart.

The city still hopes to break ground on the $119 million project in July.

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