NM: San Mateo Interchange Project

2010 Top 10 Nominee
On Time – Medium Project
San Mateo Interchange Project
Bernalillo County, NM

“Our crews have worked diligently to maintain this important Interstate, but with a highway that was more than 40-years-old, it was absolutely necessary for this work to be done. The project at San Mateo updated the highway to accommodate the increasing amount of vehicular and commercial traffic that makes its way through the area on a daily basis.”

Gary Giron
New Mexico Transportation Secretary

With the emergence of the Interstate system, the I-40 Corridor within Bernalillo County quickly became the most vital segment of New Mexico’s transportation infrastructure. Since 1989, 33 projects—comprising 395 lane-miles, 16 interchanges, and $1.1 billion invested—have continually upgraded the I-40 Corridor so that it continues serving the state into the 21st century. Each project has been a success story, and the final chapter closing out this 20-year endeavor is the completion of the I-40 Widening and San Mateo Interchange.

This project:

  • Widened 1.4 miles of I-40 mainline facility between the Carlisle and San Mateo interchanges
  • Added continuous auxiliary lanes between interchanges Reconstructed a deteriorating pavement section
  • Rebuilt the San Mateo Interchange

The goals of these improvements were to:

  • Allow for the expansion of I-40
  • Increase capacity on I-40 and San Mateo
  • Improve traffic operations for existing and projected demand
  • Correct the interchange’s physical deficiencies
  • Improve safety for drivers, pedestrians, and bicyclists

The widening and interchange reconstruction were designated as stand-alone projects, originally scheduled to be built sequentially over two years. Realizing that merging the designs into one bid package for construction would be more cost-effective and create less disruption, the New Mexico DOT chose to combine the two construction packages into one. As a result, the timeframe for project construction was slashed from 540 calendar days to 390 calendar days (and actually completed 30 days early). With this, the I-40 widening and San Mateo Interchange (indeed, the entire I-40 Corridor upgrade) was better than completed on time; it was completed ahead of time, saving the community a year of inconvenience, saving over $140 million in road user costs and $2 – $5 million in mobilization/traffic control costs, and demonstrating the NMDOT’s commitment as a steward of New Mexico’s highways.


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