Albuquerque approves plan to make downtown streets safer

Posted at: 08/19/2014 6:07 PM
Updated at: 08/19/2014 6:16 PM
By: Kai Porter, KOB Eyewitness News 4

If you've ever thought it can be a little hairy driving around downtown Albuquerque, you're not alone.

City officials are taking a closer look at some of the most dangerous intersections, and have a plan to do something about them. Albuquerque just released a traffic study that determined the most dangerous intersections in the city.

The City Council approved new money to fix up the number one problem intersection on the list – 3rd and Mountain.

Josh Meyer works on the corner of 3rd and Mountain and says he's not surprised it earned the top spot on the list.

"We're worried that someone's going to come through the building," Meyer said. "We've seen numerous accidents – I've seen cars parked up on the sidewalk after accidents. I've seen cars turned over. I've seen cars in just about any precarious position you can imagine."

He said he's glad to hear the city will finally be making some improvements to the area.
"We've been talking to people trying to get some kind of situation where they can be alerted that there's an intersection here, because I think people look past it trying to get some deterrent or flashing lights to slow some people down," Meyer said.

Albuquerque Business first compiled the top ten most dangerous intersections list, according to the downtown neighborhood traffic study.

They are as follows:

1.    Third and Mountain: 2.71

2.    Second and Mountain: 2.03

3.    First and Mountain: 1.32

4.    12th and Roma: 1.10

5.    12th and Lomas: 1.04

6.    12th and Mountain: 0.96

7.    Fourth and Mountain: 0.94

8.    Fifth and Mountain: 0.75

9.    Sixth and Mountain: 0.67

10.  12th and Marquette: 0.58

Most of the dangerous intersections are on Mountain.

The list ranks intersections by crashes per million vehicles entering an intersection.

Only two intersections – 3rd and Mountain and 2nd and Mountain – are above the city-wide average.

The overall downtown average is also well below the rest of the city.

"There's lots of people coming the wrong way on these one-way streets," neighbor Jeff Salazar said.

The city approved a $345,000 plan that includes slowing traffic, encouraging walking and improving sidewalks.

"Maybe getting rid of the one ways and having two-way intersections, as well as building bigger sidewalks, would be another fantastic thing for the city to think about," Salazar said.

The intersection at Marquette and Luna was reportedly the safest intersection downtown over the past three years, with no crashes during that time.