Diverging Diamond overview. Screen Shot/NMDOT
SANTA FE — Gov. Susana Martinez joined local, state, and federal officials Monday to break ground on the state’s first Diverging Diamond, the first of its kind in New Mexico, at Cerrillos Road and Interstate 25 in Santa Fe.
The interchange is designed to improve safety and traffic flow.
“This new state-of-the-art interchange is yet another example of what we can accomplish when we commit significant state infrastructure investments, and leverage them with federal dollars,” Martinez said. “Our roads are the literal foundation for commerce, and this new interchange will improve safety and allow people and goods to move more efficiently to better accommodate growth.”
The New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT) selected the new design due to its improved safety standards and cost-effectiveness. Other interchange designs could have cost up to 30 percent more.
The new design can also handle future traffic needs. If necessary, additional lanes can be built to the inside, keeping the ramp and bridge configuration intact. This could potentially save New Mexico millions of dollars in the long-term.
This new interchange model, which was first used in Europe, is now being adopted across the United States “Engineers, planners and designers have spent the past two years determining if this would be the most beneficial solution for the traveling public,” NMDOT Secretary Tom Church said. “Their hard work will pay off with this significant improvement to our highway system.”
The Santa Fe DDI will cost $19.8 million and is funded by NMDOT and the Federal Highway Administration. It is scheduled for completion in late 2016.
To see how the new interchange will work, visit here.
Traffic Advisories and updates on this project will be posted on the New Mexico Department of Transportation’s road conditions website.
You can also call the department’s road hotline at 511.