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Tuesday, Apr 20th

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Gallup, McKinley road projects coming; expect driving delays

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Construction has resumed on five I-40 projects, four of which will impact Gallup and other parts of McKinley County.

In a news release out April 1, the New Mexico Department of Transportation made the announcements, including how traffic will be impacted by the projects.


There is roadway reconstruction between Prewire and Thoreau in McKinley County. This  reconstruction of both lanes of east and westbound I-40, construction of new concrete wall barrier and drainage improvements. The project is worth $14.6 million.

All traffic is detoured through a median crossover while work begins on the eastbound lanes. There is one lane open to traffic in each direction. Speed reduced to 55 miles per hour with a 12-foot width restriction.

There is roadway reconstruction near Cinzia Refinery in McKinley County. Awarded to FNF Construction, Inc., of Tempe, Arizona, this project is the last of three phases. It will include reconstruction of both lanes of east and westbound I-40, installation of new guardrail and concrete wall barrier, new signing and striping. The project is worth $16.4 million.

All traffic is detoured through a median crossover while work begins on the westbound lanes. There is one lane open to traffic in each direction. Speed reduced to 55 miles per hour with an 11-foot width restriction.

There is a metal guardrail installation project along I-40 from To’hajiilee to the Port of Entry, west of Gallup. The project includes replacement and upgrade of new metal guardrail and concrete wall barrier at various locations in Cibola and McKinley Counties. The project is worth $6.1 million.

The final project is a metal guardrail installation project from Gallup to Cinzia Refinery. This project also includes replacement and upgrade of new metal guardrail and concrete wall barrier at locations not included in the previous project. The project is worth $5.8 million.

To help with traffic backups, NMDOT is encouraging motorists to use the zipper merge. Commercial vehicles should remain in the lane open at the construction zone. All other vehicles should use both lanes until reaching the defined merge area, and then alternate in a “zipper” fashion into the open lane.

Motorists should expect delays and give themselves extra time to reach their destinations. To minimize delays, travel during non-peak days and times. Peak travel is from 12 pm to 7 pm, Thursday through Sunday. Larger volumes of traffic will continue to increase as summer approaches. Keep food, snacks, and water for emergencies and remember to refuel. For more information on road conditions, please visit www.nmroads.com.

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