Responses from Patti Watson, CWA Strategic Communications, regarding issues raised by Seven Bar North Residents
In terms of lighting, Westside Blvd. has new lighting that was installed per the plan and that is based on the requirements of this type of urban roadway to provide safety and visibility for motorists and pedestrians. We cannot remove or change any of the lighting, however we do recognize it has increased “scatter” into nearby properties on the south side of the roadway. Once the project is complete (likely in October or November 2022), we will investigate the possibility of adding front-facing light shields to the lighting in the median and house-side light shields to the lighting on the sidewalk on the south side of the street. These shields would better focus the lighting and reduce the amount that shines into back yards.
The speed limit signs are currently covered because construction is still taking place. They will be uncovered when construction is completed and the speed limit will be 35 miles per hour. If speeding is a problem we will investigate available mitigation measures (slow down, speed monitoring etc.). As you know speeding and drag racing are a problem throughout Albuquerque. We will consult with the Albuquerque Police Department to see what measures can be taken (targeted ticketing, etc.) to address this issue.
We recognize that this project may have an impact on sound/noise levels on Westside Blvd. After construction is completed and traffic has had time to normalize, estimated to be about six to 12 months, plans are to do another sound/noise study and determine whether a sound wall or other mitigation measures are needed.
Left Turn from Westside onto Grande
As shown on the website (www.westsidewidening.com) the final plans for the project always included a left-turn for eastbound traffic on Westside Blvd. to access Grande via a dedicated turn bay. That access was also included in the existing design (see drawings).
A traffic signal cannot be installed at the intersection of Westside and Grande because that intersection is too close to the intersection of Westside and NM 528. Installing traffic signals at the intersections of Westside and 7-Bar Loop and Westside and La Sierrita would also not be feasible because this entire stretch of roadway is only 0.85 miles. Both intersections are too close to the intersections that already have traffic signals – Westside and Golf Course and Westside and NM 528.
Because some of your residences back up to the roadway (Westside Blvd.) and have the protection of the back wall, hopefully your home values will not be impacted. As stated above, the City will conduct a noise/sound evaluation and work with the neighborhood to develop a plan to reduce any adverse noise impacts. We encourage you to participate in that process.
We recognize that construction has taken a long time and that not every aspect of the project will be ideal for every resident. We would like to encourage everyone to see how the roadway functions once all construction is completed and as referenced above, traffic has a chance to normalize. At that time, we will be happy to work with all residents to consider what mitigations are needed.
CONTACTS for questions and concerns or to sign up for email updates on the project:
Patti Watson, 505-245-3134 office; 505-269-9691 cell; firstname.lastname@example.org
Ty Stevers, 505-245-3138 office; 505-417-9989 cell; email@example.com