District celebrates opening of RTD Park & Ride Taos facility

Work on Phase V and VI of the North Central Regional Transit District Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Transition Plan has expanded into the Town of Taos and Taos County. 

RTD5_3Most significant in this current phase is the construction of NCRTD’s first park and ride facility now completed at the southeast corner of US Highway 64 and NM 150 in Taos County. The RTD Park & Ride Taos is a fully-developed and improved, ADA compliant parking facility to accommodate 83 cars on the RTD Blue Bus TSV Green, evening Night Rider and Questa routes. It will also accommodate future routes needing to connect at this location.

The Park & Ride has included the buildout and paving of the pre-existing dirt lot and the addition of an ADA compliant bus shelter, concrete pads, lighting, and will provide a more efficient and safer access for buses moving in and out of the stop. The development is the result of a long-term usage agreement with New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT) on the property.

Construction was also done on the southbound stop opposite Cid’s Market on Paseo del Pueblo Norte which included a bus pullout with ADA accessible concrete pad and shelter. Additional improvements for a new shelter and pad are earmarked for the Taos Public Library, the Guadalupe Church parking lot, the northbound stop outside Cid’s Market and the northbound stop located on Paseo del Pueblo Sur and Bertha St, all in the Town of Taos.

“Upgrading RTD bus stops and facilities to be in compliance with the Americans With Disabilities Act has long been one of the primary goals of the District and we’re proud to be expanding the program to Taos and Taos County,” stated Daniel Barrone, NCRTD Chair and Mayor of the Town of Taos. “We are especially pleased to be adding so many site improvements to the lot by the Solar Center which for years existed as a virtual parking free-for-all. Now it will be clean with amenities, and safer access in and out for people using the location.”

The NCRTD applied for funding under the Transportation Alternatives Program through the Northern Pueblos Regional Planning Organization and the New Mexico Department of Transportation for federal fiscal years 2018, 2019 and 2020.

The District’s efforts in implementing its ADA plan received a huge boost with a $1.02 million award from the Federal Highway Administration’s Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP), through NMDOT, to modify RTD bus stops and facilities to assure they meet all federal accessibility requirements. This allows for the completion of the fifth (design) and sixth (construction) phase of the project by the end of FY 2020.

Phase V of the ADA Transition Plan, the design portion, identified a series bus stops in the Taos-area. Work then began on Phase VI, with the construction of bus stop infrastructure such as concrete pad work; sidewalk transition work and bus stop area backfill; installation of bus stop facilities; traffic and safety controls; bus shelters; and associated site improvements.

During the initial Phase I, an ADA Transition Plan was created and identified ADA noncompliant bus stops and shelters throughout the District and provided ADA compliant bus stop location templates that were used to guide modifications to bring the bus stops into ADA compliance. During Phase II, III and IV of the project, the ADA Transition Plan findings began to be implemented to bring existing ADA noncompliant bus stops and shelters into compliance in the Española area and at the Jim West Regional Transit Center.

Albuquerque-based Wilson & Company, is the on-call engineering firm as well as the contractor that completed the original system-wide bus stop assessment. HO Construction completed the construction of the Taos-area ADA Transition Plan.