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Albuquerque looks to end gridlock around balloon fiesta

February 28, 2019

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Albuquerque is looking for ways to end the gridlock on city streets during the annual international balloon fiesta.

The nine-day October event draws hundreds of thousands of spectators. Residents complain about the traffic and some say it’s getting worse.

Mayor Tim Keller on Wednesday said the City Council and state are being asked for help to address the problems.

The city is asking for money to pay for a ramp that would provide direct access to the balloon park from Interstate 25. Other considerations include building a spur for the Rail Runner commuter train and developing more effective bus routes to and from the park.

Balloon Fiesta director of operations Sam Parks says park-and-ride options and traffic management will be a major focus as they plan for this year’s fiesta.