Paseo del Norte & the adjacent multi-use trail


This arrow marks the approximate spot where David Anderson was killed by an out of control car that came crashing off Paseo del Norte and landed on the multi-use trail just to the south of PdN. What you can't see here is just how close the path is to the 60 mph east bound traffic. The path is closer to PdN at this point than any other. And that out of control car on 3-22-2010 wasn't the only one. Another car crashed off in almost the exact same location six days later, narrowly missing the path users this time (thankfully). In response to all this, NMDOT is still deciding if a barrier is needed.

I found this disturbing and decided to write letters to the Governor, NMDOT in Santa Fe and NMDOT District Three here in Albuquerque. Paseo del Norte is also State Highway 423; the crash happened in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque and other parts of PdN are in within the City of Albuquerque, so it is difficult to know who has the final say in putting up effective barriers NOW, but this is where I started. If you are bothered by the lack of response to this dangerous situation, please consider taking some action of your own.

Views: 63

Comment by Karmic Echo on April 3, 2010 at 11:52am
Yes, everybody needs to slow down and pay attention more, but looking at those pics, it boggles common sense to not see the need for a barrier. The problem with Paseo is that it morphs along its route into different types of road, and as a result many folks seem to think of it as less than the freeway it is along the section in question. It's a freeway there with speeds only 5 mph less than I-25 and I-40 (and, of course, because it's an extended stretch of road with no impediments in the form of stoplights or signs, many, many people push it up past 70 mph). I can't imagine common sense allowing a bike/walking path to exist right alongside either of the interstates without any significant protections. Incidentally, I know there is bike path which parallels I-40--anybody know if similar unprotected spots exist along its route?
Comment by gleejb on April 4, 2010 at 8:19am
From Saturday's Albuquerque Journal West Side
Saturday, April 03, 2010

Bike Path To Be Studied


Journal Staff Report
Bicyclists Jane Cudney and Linda Rockwell say they never gave the bike path along Paseo del Norte, west of Rio Grande NW, much thought.
That is, until the recent spate of crashes, including one that killed bicyclist David Anderson on March 22.
"Since (the most recent) crash, I'm very alert now," said Rockwell, a Corrales attorney who says she frequently rides along that path.
That stretch is now the focus of a study intended to find ways to make the area safer from traffic.
But there's nothing the sheriff's department can do about it right now to make it temporarily safer. Paseo del Norte is managed by the New Mexico Department of Transportation.
Anderson was killed after he was struck by a car that had gone over an embankment and crashed through a fence. Almost a week later, another car went through the fence just a few feet away.
There is no concrete barrier or berm on that stretch of Paseo del Norte.
DOT spokesman Phil Gallegos said that stretch along Paseo is high on the radar of the DOT, the county and State Police.
Sheriff's Lt. Jason Katz said the DOT is surveying the area to determine what can be done to prevent incidents like the fatal wreck. He said the study also might answer why there is no barrier along that stretch.
The study is expected be completed late next week, Katz said.
Cudney said she was running in the area immediately after the second crash; Rockwell witnessed it.
"I was riding on the bosque trail, turning east on the Paseo trail, when I saw this little white car come crashing through the fence," she said. "It looked like the car was going to hit a guy on his bicycle, but he was paying attention and went off to the side.
"I never thought about that area before. ... After the crash, I stopped to talk to the guy who narrowly missed getting hit. He said he was thinking about it, too."
Bernalillo County Sheriff Manny Gonzales said his department initially considered placing temporary barriers along the 200-foot stretch until a more permanent solution could be put in place, but then learned the jurisdiction belonged to the state.
Cudney, who is the president of the Outlaws Triathlon Club, said a study "is not enough."
"Put a barrier there while you're studying it," she said.

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