By Tony A. Archuleta
Vince Peña, resident engineer of the state Department of Transportation’s Las Cruces Project Office, appeared before the Truth or Consequences City Commission on Tuesday, Oct. 14, to report on the bridge rehabilitation project at I-25’s Exit 79.
The contractor on the $3 million project is Las Cruces-based Villalobos Construction, and the estimated project time frame is 70 to 80 days, according to Peña.
A couple of commissioners and one hotel owner on the north side of town expressed concerns with the signage, or lack thereof, alerting southbound travelers about the alternate route leading to Truth or Consequences via Exit 83 near Elephant Butte.
Peña vowed to “do everything we can to minimize impacts” to uptown businesses.
Exit 83, about five miles north of Truth or Consequences, is widely been regarded as one of the most confusing on/off ramps in the state, and it’s a situation that has long frustrated business and governmental officials in the City of Elephant Butte.
Now that Exit 83 will serve as the most direct route to the northern reaches of Truth or Consequences, where the likes of Walmart and McDonald’s are located, business owners here are concerned that many I-25 motorists will continue driving south, at best taking Exit 75 in Williamsburg, or worse yet, continuing south toward Hatch or Las Cruces.
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