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This story is a staff report from The Paper.

Intersection mural by Reyes Padilla, a project of Artful Life. Courtesy IG @railyardsmarket.abq

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The City of Albuquerque wants drivers to slow down and they are trying an innovative way to gain a little compliance.

Presumably under the premise that when you see a big, colorful new thing in the roadway, you’ll slow down to take a look, the City commissioned a huge new “intersection mural” right in the middle of the busy Barelas Neighborhood at 4th Street and Hazeldine Street SW.

The project is a partnership between the City, Artful Life and the Barelas Neighborhood Association. Artful Life, a local arts non-profit, partnered with the neighborhood association to create the vision for the mural. “From September 2019 to present, the Artful Life Barelas youth team co-created art and surveyed their neighbors, asking residents (including their families) perspectives about the neighborhood as well as what type of public art they desired. Murals were at the top of the list,” says Artful Life in an online post about the project.

Reyes Padilla then created an initial design from their inspiration and the City offered the intersection for the project.

Over the weekend, residents found the intersection closed as Padilla worked. The result is traffic stopping, for sure.

The project is part of the City’s Vision Zero commitment to eliminate traffic-related fatalities in the city’s roadways.

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