State Road 423 - Paseo del Norte

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New Mexico State Road 423 travels 11.02 miles across northern Albuquerque along Paseo del Norte. Paseo del Norte originates north of Petroglyph National Monument, where Atrisco Vista Boulevard turns east toward the Paradise Hills neighborhood. Classified as FL-1000, Paseo del Norte stretches 5.66 miles east to Piedras Marcadas Canyon and Golf Course Road (FL-4079) by the Taylor Ranch community. NM 423 takes over Paseo del Norte east from there, upgrading to a limited access highway from a single point urban interchange (SPUI) with NM 45 (Coors Boulevard) to the North Valley community of Albuquerque and Interstate 25.

Beyond I-25 and milepost 8, NM 423 (Paseo del Norte) comprises a controlled access arterial east to the North Albuquerque Acres community. The state road ends at NM 556 (Tramway Road) at Sandia Heights.

NM 423 - Alameda North Valley - Albuquerque
State Road 423 (Paseo del Norte) leading west from Interstate 25 through the Alameda North Valley community in Albuquerque. Photo taken 04/28/17.

Plans for a new North Valley crossing of the Rio Grande at Montaño Road originated in 1964 with a proposal submitted to the city by the West Side Association, a group of business owners and county officials. Following years of debate, an alignment for a bridge to the West Side was selected further north along El Pueblo Road in 1980. Although not yet funded, it was named Paseo del Norte.1

The 1983 announcement by Intel Corporation to expand its plant in Rio Rancho increased the need for improved roads. With this in mind, the Legislature allocated $6 million for the Paseo del Norte project. Subsequent selling of bonds by the Highway Department in 1985 raised $34 million. Coupled with $4 million from the city of Albuquerque and $2 million from Bernalillo County, the project acquired the funding needed for the construction of a new roadway and bridge linking Coors Boulevard (NM 45) with Second Street (NM 47).1

Community opposition from the village of Los Ranchos and residents in North Valley arose, with four lawsuits filed in 1984 to halt work. House Speaker Raymond Sanchez was also against the bridge. However he led efforts for a compromise in 1985 with the state for the roadway. One concession shifted the responsibility for the proposed crossing at Montaño Road from the state to the city. Changes made along Paseo del Norte included adding grade separations at Rio Grande Boulevard and Fourth Street, lowering a portion of the roadway and adding berms to offset traffic noise. A restriction was also placed prohibiting large trucks from using NM 423 west of NM 47.1

Work eventually started in August 1986 on the 1,425 foot long bridge over the Rio Grande. Opened on December 10, 1987, the span represented $6.14 million of the overall $46 million costs for the roadway between Coors Boulevard and 2nd Street. NM 423 east to Interstate 25 was completed in July 1988. Paseo del Norte west from Coors Boulevard to Golf Course Road was finished in 1995.1

Traffic predictions forecast 59,000 vehicles per day (vpd) on Paseo del Norte by 2010. Instead that number was reached in 1997, the same year the city built the Montaño Bridge. Widening of NM 423 east of I-25 to Wyoming Boulevard was completed in 1988-89, and from there to NM 556 (Tramway Boulevard) between 2001 and 2004.1

A vote approved $8.7 million in bonds for an extension of Paseo del Norte west through Petroglyph National Monument in 2004. Construction commenced in 2006 following legal opposition, with the new roadway opened in 2007.1

A $93 million design-build project upgraded the exchange joining Interstate 25 with Paseo del Norte between ground breaking on September 5, 20132 and a ribbon cutting ceremony held on December 15, 2014. The main aspect of the work was a high speed flyover linking northbound I-25 with NM 423 west. Four other bridges built included overpasses for Jefferson Street and the southbound I-25 frontage road across the freeway entrance ramp from NM 423 eastbound. A previous plan called for a full systems interchange spreading across a larger foot print. Estimated to cost $360 million in 2011, the Paseo / I-25 interchange was eventually scrapped due insufficient highway funding. Furthermore voters rejected a $25 million bond proposal by Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry to help fund the work. These events resulted in transportation officials drafting the scaled back interchange that was ultimately built.3

NM 423 east at I-25 / Pan American Freeway - Albuquerque
NM 423 (Paseo del Norte) east at I-25 and the west side Pan American Freeway frontage road in Albuquerque. A diamond interchange previously joined the two highways here. Photo taken 04/28/17.

The city of Albuquerque plans on widening a 1.5 mile section of Paseo Del Norte from two to four lanes on the far West Side. $2.1 million was allocated in 2019 toward planning, design and right of way acquisition, which is expected to run through late 2020. Handling around 20,000 vehicles per day, the section is located between Kimmick Drive and Universe Boulevard. Construction costs, including the addition of bicycle lanes and sidewalks, will likely top $20 million and take 12 to 14 months to complete.4

State Road 423 East
The first confirming marker for State Road 423 appears along Paseo del Norte just east of Eagle Ranch Road. Photo taken 04/28/17.
Large trucks are restricted across the Rio Grande bridge along Paseo del Norte. Photo taken 04/28/17.
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2 photos
A single point urban interchange (SPUI) joins NM 423 (Paseo del Norte) with NM 45 (Coors Boulevard). Photos taken 04/28/17.
NM 423 is a limited access highway from Coors Boulevard east to Interstate 25. The ensuing stretch east from NM 45 bee lines across the Rio Grande to Los Ranchos De Albuquerque. Photo taken 04/28/17.
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2 photos
Spanning the Rio Grande along NM 423 (Paseo del Norte) eastbound. Photos taken 04/28/17.
Advancing through northern reaches of Los Ranchoes De Albuquerque, NM 423 (Paseo del Norte) passes under Rio Grande Boulevard (former NM 194). Photo taken 04/28/17.
A hybrid SPUI joins NM 423 (Paseo del Norte) with 2nd Street (former NM 47) in one half mile. 2nd Street comprises a principal arterial route through North Valley. Photo taken 04/28/17.
4th Street spans Paseo del Norte just ahead of the left exit for 2nd Street (old NM 47). The eastbound bridge taking NM 423 over NM 47 opened to traffic on November 9, 1995.7 Photo taken 04/28/17.
State Road 423 elevates across a BNSF Railroad line and Edith Boulevard (FL-5098) east of the 2nd Street entrance ramp. Photo taken 04/28/17.
Another SPUI along NM 423 joins Paseo del Norte eastbound with Jefferson Street in 0.75 miles. Photo taken 04/28/17.
Paseo del Norte reenters the Albuquerque city limits at Edith Boulevard. Photo taken 04/28/17.
An at-grade railroad crossing precedes the off-ramp for Jefferson Street along NM 423 eastbound. The railroad spur was decommissioned after the crossing on Paseo del Norte was rebuilt in 2014. Photo taken 04/28/17.
Two lanes depart NM 423 east for Jefferson Street to the Loop Industrial District and a series of business parks spreading west along Interstate 25. Photo taken 04/28/17.
2 photos
2 photos
Crossing over Jefferson Street with three eastbound lanes, commuter traffic separates for the upcoming parclo interchange with Interstate 25. Photos taken 04/28/17.
Two lanes separate from Paseo del Norte east onto a free flow ramp for Interstate 25 south to Downtown Albuquerque. Photo taken 04/28/17.
The overpass taking the west Pan American Freeway frontage road over the southbound entrance ramp for Interstate 25 was constructed during the 2013-14 Paseo del Norte / I-25 interchange project. Photo taken 04/28/17.
The signature piece of the Paseo del Norte / I-25 interchange project was the high speed flyover connecting the freeway north with NM 423 west. NM 423 east passes under the ramp ahead of the signalized intersection with the east Pan American Freeway frontage road. Photo taken 04/28/17.
NM 423 transitions into a six-lane commercial arterial east of Interstate 25. Photo taken 04/28/17.
The Pan American East Freeway frontage road connects NM 423 with the northbound I-25 on-ramp to Santa Fe. Photo taken 04/28/17.
State Road 423 West
Taking the two lane flyover from Interstate 25 north to State Road 423 (Paseo del Norte Boulevard) westbound. Photo taken 04/28/17.
The flyover from I-25 north to Paseo del Norte bypasses the westbound off-ramp to Jefferson Street. Photo taken 04/28/17.
Continuing from the SPUI with Jefferson Street, Paseo del Norte crosses a decommissioned railroad spur and proceeds west across the North Diversion Channel toward 2nd Street. Trucks are restricted from NM 423 beyond 2nd Street (former NM 47). Photo taken 04/28/17.
Until 2010, when it was truncated to the Albuquerque south city line, NM 47 followed 2nd Street north from Candelaria Road in Albuquerque to the Alameda North Valley community and NM 556 beyond the city line. Photo taken 04/28/17.
Trucks are again directed to the left exit for 2nd Street from Paseo del Norte westbound. 2md Street leads south from North Valley along the village of Los Ranchos De Albuquerque. Photo taken 04/28/17.
A hybrid single point urban interchange (SPUI) connects NM 423 with 2nd Street (old NM 47). The grade separation was constructed from September 1994 to April 1996 at a cost of $7.3 million.5,6 Photo taken 04/28/17.
The three lane westbound span along NM 423 across 2nd Street opened in July 1995.5 Photo taken 04/28/17.
4th Street (Historic U.S. 85) spans Paseo del Norte to the immediate west of 2nd Street. Photo taken 04/28/17.
Milepost 5 precedes the Guadalupe Trail pedestrian bridge. Photo taken 04/28/17.
West from the Rio Grande Boulevard overpass, NM 423 bends toward the Rio Grande through north Los Ranchos. Photo taken 04/28/17.
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3 photos
3 photos
The 1,405.9 foot long bridge across the Rio Grande was completed in 1987. The 112.9 foot wide deck supports six lanes and a multi use trail running along NM 423 eastbound.7 Photos taken 04/28/17.
NM 423 crosses Corrales Acequa and Riverside Drain beyond the Rio Grande levee system at mile marker 4. Photo taken 04/28/17.
The NM 423 freeway concludes at the SPUI with NM 45. Signed incorrectly as Coors Road here, Coors Boulevard represents a major arterial route joining Albuquerque's West Side with Rio Rancho to the north and I_40 at West Mesa to the south. Photo taken 04/28/17.
Coors Boulevard runs along the east side of the Eagle Ranch and Taylor Ranch suburban communities. NM 45 extends north to Cottonwood Mall and NM 528 (Alameda Boulevard) and south to NM 315 at Isleta Village. Photo taken 04/28/17.
Paseo del Norte transitions into an at-grade arterial west of Coors Boulevard, intersecting Eagle Ranch Road (FL-5022) next. Photo taken 04/28/17.

Sources:

  1. "MILESTONE for a passageway - Catalyst for sprawl or miracle solution? Opinions differ on Paseo del Norte as it reaches its 20th anniversary." Albuquerque Journal (NM), December 10, 2007.
  2. "State funding to help with Paseo expansion." Albuquerque Journal (NM), June 12, 2019.
  3. "Paseo Project Gets Rolling - Officials Break Groundl Work to Begin in Mid-October." Albuquerque Journal (NM) September 6, 2013.
  4. "Finally! - Work on the Paseo del Norte/I-25 interchange is set to complete ahead of schedule on Tuesday." Albuquerque Journal (NM) December 14, 2014.
  5. "Alameda Project Near End." Albuquerque Journal (NM) April 5, 1995.
  6. "Paseo Contruction a Model Project." Albuquerque Journal (NM) November 14, 1995.
  7. NM-423 over RIO GRANDE, Bernalillo County, New Mexico. BridgeReports.com
  8. "Clearing the Way." Albuquerque Journal (NM), November 9, 1995.


Photo Credits:

04/28/17 by AARoads and Chris Kalina

Connect with:
Interstate 25

Page Updated 06-13-2019.