Report: 80% of Albuquerque roads in poor condition

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Nearly $6 billion. That’s how much New Mexico is short – just to keep roads up to code and to fund projects to make transportation more reliable.

“New Mexico’s transportation network is literally the backbone of the state,” said Carolyn Kelly, spokesperson for TRIP, the National Transportation Research Group. “It transports $125 billion worth of goods in and out of the state each year, and it allows the state’s one and a half million licensed drivers to move about, as well as those passing through.”

5% of New Mexico’s bridges are in poor condition. Most bridges are designed to last 50 years before a major overhaul or replacement. In New Mexico, 47% of the state’s bridges were built in 1969 or earlier.

Rio Rancho Mayor Greg Hull says he wants to see it as a priority.

“That’s the big thing for West Side residents, not only just Rio Rancho, but West Side Albuquerque is getting across those bridges,” Hull said.

In Albuquerque alone, drivers lose a total of 46 hours a year just sitting in traffic. On average, drivers waste about 20 gallons of fuel every year in traffic – which amounts to more than $1,200.

In Albuquerque, 60% of the roads – or two out of everything three miles traveled – are considered to be in poor condition. That means drivers are experiencing a rough ride and hitting potholes and cracks more often.

That wear and tear from the bad roads, along with other safety factors, reportedly costs New Mexicans nearly $2,900 each year.

These TRIP findings will be presented in both the House and Senate chambers Thursday at the Roundhouse, where they will determine how much funding will be poured in the state.