Overpasses on Diamond Drive closing for repairs

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By Bennett Horne

The pedestrian overpasses on Diamond Drive will be closed beginning Monday while crews resurface the steps and bridges.
Preparation began early Friday morning ahead of the project, which is expected to finish June 25.

“We anticipate the sandblasting will be done in the first week,” Los Alamos County Public Works Department Senior Traffic Manager Alipio Mondragon said Thursday night. “The resurfacing’s going to follow right behind and that’s going to take a couple of days. The material they’re using will then need a couple of days to dry before we can let anybody on the overpasses.”

The project will not affect vehicle traffic, however, it will affect foot traffic.

Pedestrians who usually use the north overpass to cross Diamond Drive are advised to use the crosswalks at Sandia Drive and pedestrians who regularly use the south overpass are advised to use the crosswalk at Canyon Road.

Because of the closures motorists are encouraged to be on the lookout for increased pedestrian traffic on that stretch of Diamond Drive.

Mondragon said one of the determining factors in the pace of the project will be the ease in which the current surface can be pulled up.

“A lot of it depends on how hard the current surface is to remove,” he said. “The minute one guy is done sandblasting the other guy will come right in behind him to apply the sealant because they want as clean a surface as possible.”

Mondragon and Raymond Baca, a senior technician with the department, strapped tarps underneath the overpasses just after midnight Friday morning. More tarps will be added to the sides and tops of the overpasses before sandblasting begins in an effort to keep debris from falling on Diamond Drive.