Central New Mexico Receives Regional Infrastructure Accelerator Designation for I-40 TradePort Corridor

Central New Mexico, Oct. 17, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) announced a coalition of Bernalillo County, Sandoval County and the Village of Los Lunas, together with tri-state partners including the Port of Los Angeles, California, Kingman, Arizona and Winslow, Arizona will be designated a Regional Infrastructure Accelerator (RIA) for an I-40 TradePort Corridor – an integrated supply chain system of clean energy-logistics-industrial hubs.

Over the next year, the USDOT RIA will help accelerate project delivery through a variety of ways, including project planning, studies and analysis, and preliminary engineering and design work. Initial seed funding to support the I-40 TradePort Corridor planning phase is $974,000. With the USDOT Build America Bureau, the I-40 TradePort will review the use of various agency financing programs to support infrastructure investment at the corridor’s key hubs.

“Our state trade ports and interstates serve as major trade hubs in New Mexico – delivering goods, supporting jobs, and driving economic growth across the southwest,” says U.S. Sen. Ben Ray Luján. “I’m proud to have supported the RIA designation for I-40. This designation and partnership with USDOT will help fuel economic opportunities and expand clean energy infrastructure in New Mexico.”

“I-40 connects New Mexico communities and businesses to some of the largest markets and trade opportunities in America. I’ve been proud to advocate for and now welcome this strategic federal investment to modernize the I-40 corridor. This funding will help prepare the whole region for more clean and electric delivery vehicles on the road and maintain New Mexico’s central position in our nation's supply chain and shipping network,” says U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich.

“I am thrilled that Central New Mexico is developing infrastructure that will help trade and commerce not just in the state, but the entire country, as well,” says U.S. Rep. Melanie Stansbury. “This is a crucial step forward in ensuring New Mexico’s future.”

“Put simply, this important designation will expand infrastructure investment, trade, and economic growth in New Mexico. By investing in our beloved communities across New Mexico, we create opportunity, good-paying jobs, and a brighter, more prosperous future for hard-working families,” says U.S. Rep. Teresa Leger Fernandez.

“Our roads and interstates are critical for connecting our communities across New Mexico and the United States – especially when it comes to trade and commerce,” says U.S. Rep. Gabe Vasquez. “USDOT’s designation will provide accelerate clean energy infrastructure and economic opportunities for New Mexico, and I am so proud that Bernalillo County and the Village of Los Lunas will see these benefits in their neighborhoods.”

The partner group’s initial intention is to develop the project on the 805-mile-long stretch from Los Angeles to Albuquerque, and later collaborate with partners to extend the corridor into Texas and Midwest markets. 

“I am honored to a be part of Central New Mexico’s collaboration and leadership on this project which I believe will be a catalyst that proactively prepares for future transportation needs throughout the I-40 system,” says Bernalillo County Commission Chair, Barbara Baca.

The Albuquerque area will host a Truck Mobility Complex that will serve Class 8 electric and hydrogen trucks, and function as a logistics hub for private investment. These manufacturing and distribution projects will facilitate the flow of trade to and through New Mexico with this value-added, cost-saving system. Other strategic TradePort hubs will be in Los Angeles, Kingman, Arizona and Winslow, Arizona. 

“Sandoval County is proud to partner with Bernalillo County and the Village of Los Lunas along with others on this project as it will bring jobs to the Central Rio Grande Valley, Albuquerque, and Rio Rancho. Also, this TradePort Corridor will encourage private investment and increase economic development as opportunities for business relocation and expansion to this metro area will result,” says Wayne Johnson, county manager for Sandoval County. 

“The I-40 TradePort Corridor is poised to facilitate trade opportunities benefiting the Village of Los Lunas via the Central New Mexico Rail Park. It will create additional integration into the greater Albuquerque metropolitan area, and beyond. This corridor fuels opportunities for accelerated expansion and enhancement of infrastructure for the region,” says Village of Los Lunas senior economic developer, Victoria Archuleta.

For more information on the I-40 TradePort Corridor, click here.

The other RIA grant recipients for 2023 include California DOT, Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, Pacific Northwest Economic Region*, State of Louisiana Executive Office, Montgomery County Department of Transportation, Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada, Centralina Council of Governments, the City of Tampa, San Diego Association of Governments*, Central Puget Sound Regional Transit Authority, TradePort California*, Bay Area Rapid Transit District, and the City of Fort Lauderdale. * Prior grantee receiving additional funding.

“We are pleased to expand the Regional Infrastructure Accelerator program to 24 regions, helping communities build capacity and get much-needed transportation projects underway,” says U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “DOT partners with these regions to help them secure financing and develop in-house expertise for innovative delivery of regionally significant projects.” 

“Building capacity at the regional level to use innovative delivery and financing options is critical to addressing America's infrastructure challenges,” says Build America Bureau Executive Director Morteza Farajian, Ph.D. “The RIA program is a novel approach that enables the Bureau to help our partners deliver more good projects faster.”

Each of the RIA recipients will sign cooperative agreements with the Build America Bureau and establish work plans to bring their proposals to fruition. For more information on the RIA program and to learn more about the Build America Bureau, click here.

Previous RIA grant recipients include Fresno Council of Governments (on behalf of TradePort California), Dona Ana County, New Mexico (Santa Teresa TradePort), Central Ohio Transit Authority, Panhandle Regional Planning Commission, Texas, Resilient SR 37 Program, California, Suffolk County, New York Midway Crossing Project, Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning, Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency, Cleveland, Ohio, San Diego Association of Governments, and Pacific Northwest Economic Region, Seattle, Washington.

About the Village of Los Lunas

Los Lunas is a friendly, pro-development community located 25 minutes south from I-40 in Albuquerque, 15 minutes from the International Sunport and easily accessed off the major I-25 interstate that runs north and south through the state of New Mexico. Over the past 40 years, Los Lunas’ population increase makes us one of the fastest growing communities in New Mexico.


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