A meeting to gather public input on a proposed bridge over the triple railroad tracks crossing Jarales Road has been scheduled for early next month.
From 6-8 p.m., Tuesday, June 11, representatives from BNSF Railway and the New Mexico Department of Transportation will hold a public meeting to discuss the rail grade separation at Gil Sanchez Elementary, 376 Jarales Road (N.M. 109), in Jarales.
The project would include realignment of Jarales Road, an overhead structure at the tracks and frontage road access.
Work along Jarales Road would begin at Camino de Crystal, north of the triple tracks, and go south, ending at Trujillo Road.
The purpose of the June meeting is to present the project purpose and need, alternatives considered, funding and the project schedule.
A presentation will be given with a public comment period to follow. Project displays, information and project representatives will be available to address questions.
In December, Valencia County commissioners unanimously approved a memorandum of understanding calling for BNSF to build a bridge over the triple tracks, and for the railroad and NMDOT to provide funding for the estimated $6.3 million project.
The MOU does not call for the county to provide funding or in-kind services in order for the overpass project to move forward.
The commissioners requested $6.3 million from the state legislature for the bridge in their most recent Infrastructure Capital Improvement Plan, but there was no funding allocated in the 2019 session.
Public input on the proposed project will be accepted at any time.
However, NMDOT asks that comments and/or questions specific to this meeting be sent no later than Friday, June 21, to, Hans Erickson, c/o TKDA, 444 Cedar Street, Suite 1500, Saint Paul, MN 55101 or via email to [email protected], Attn: Jarales Rd. Grade Sep.
If you have questions and/or unable to attend the public meeting, please contact Hans Erickson, TKDA Project Manager, (651) 292-4512, [email protected], or John Taschek, Environmental Specialist, 980-0993, [email protected].
Julia M. Dendinger began working at the VCNB in 2006. She covers Valencia County government, Belen Consolidated Schools and the village of Bosque Farms. She is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists Rio Grande chapter’s board of directors.