Some downtown ‘wayfinding’ signs remain in disarray

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It’s not a good look for a city that’s trying to revitalize its downtown. Those bright yellow signs meant to point people around have faded away, and some of them are blank.

“I think it looks terrible,” said Jaque Fragua. 

Along America’s Mother Road, all the letters on several signs have peeled away, faded by the New Mexico sun. 

“It’s actually a shame, you can see that it’s flaking off and it’s been that way for awhile,” said Darryl Deloach.  
  
The yellow “wayfinding” signs put in by the city nearly two decades ago, are doing anything but helping people find their way. 

“Someone needs to do something about it,” said Fragua. 

For years, people across Albuquerque have reported the dingy signs to 311, calling for them to be fixed. 

KRQE News 13 first brought the issue to the city’s attention three-and-a-half years ago. 

“Because it was a one time federal grant back in the ’90s, we don’t have money to maintain them,” said Mark Motsko with the city’s Municipal Development Department back in October 2014.

At the time, the city said it was going to remove the 31 worn out signs, replacing them with eighteen new ones.

It appears some of the signs have been replaced, but others have not. One of the deteriorated signs sits within feet of City Hall and the Albuquerque Police Department. 

So, KRQE News 13 went to Municipal Development again. A spokesperson said the signs were put in through the Planning Department. 

However, a spokesperson for Planning said the signs were put in by the Transit Department and the now-defunct Downtown Action Team. 

A spokesperson for the Transit Department said there was a $500,000 federal grant to design and put in the signs back in 2001, but no money to actually maintain them. 

“It’s very disconcerting. It just makes it look like we don’t care about our appearance, we don’t care about the quality of our space,” said Fragua. 

People KRQE News 13 spoke to said this doesn’t help the city’s image.

“I think a lot of people just ignore stuff because it’s the status quo. We need some people to really sort of take that pride in Albuquerque to the next level,” said Deloach. 

A spokesperson for the city’s Transit Department said it will recommend to the Mayor’s office that the Municipal Development Department take down the damaged signs. 

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