As mentioned earlier this week, I made a rare public excursion from the BB Cave and mingled with quite a few folks who were kind enough to show up for the Bike ABQ “Meet & Greet” this past Tuesday.
While turnout wasn’t quite as high as the first such event some months back, City, County, and State staff were on-hand, and it was a great chance to directly find answers to a laundry list of cycling/walking infrastructure questions. What I heard was overwhelmingly positive, and it’s clear that the atmosphere for making our roads less car-centric is becoming less and less cloudy.
I’ll pass along a few things which illustrate this condition of metaphorical sky, while leaving out a few others I don’t want to jinx.
- The new long-range 2045 bikeways plan (sorry, no link) includes changes that proscribe making Copper/Campus a bike boulevard all the way from the current segment of Fair Heights Bike Boulevard (Copper& Monroe) to the University of New Mexico campus.
- The long-awaited revision to that guiding document for how roads are constructed, the Development Policy Manual (DPM), is nearing final approval. Below is a look at the current draft requirements for “roadway elements.” To use a really hackneyed idiom, the DPM is where the “rubber hits the road,” and the specificity contained here is of utmost importance in how our streets look. While still in draft form prior to final approval, the general consensus is that the new DPM is a much more “Complete Streets” compliant guiding document. You can see other chapters in draft form here.
- Long-serving Director of Traffic Engineering John Kolesar has left that position (via retirement, IIRC) and that’s generally seen as a very hopeful sign toward less car-centric roadway planning and implementation from the Department in coming days. No news on who the new Director is, an understandably widespread condition given the change in City Administration. Note, for example, the vacant positions on the DPM Executive Committee.
- Those eagerly awaiting new striping jobs around town (Scot shyly raises his hand here), such as Girard between Lomas and Indian School, need to know that those jobs are delayed due to the need for warmer temps before thermoplastic striping adheres properly to the road surface. I recall something about it needing to be 45 degrees, but my memory is awful and I can’t recall whether than meant the lows had to be 45 or higher, or what.
There’s more, but as I mentioned above, I don’t want to jinx anything. Regarding improvements, both those mentioned here and those not, what is eminently clear is that continued public involvement (that means YOU) is having an effect on how our local roadways are being planned and built.
Keep up the good work, citizens. Thanks also to all City/County/State staffers who attended, and your role in making Burque Better.