West I-40 Diversion Channel
The award-winning West I-40 Diversion Channel was completed in 2006.The project diverts 1558 cfs of storm water runoff from four main sources: the future Unser Dam (now called La Presa), the Parkway Storm Drain, Laurelwood Pond, and local runoff from the subdivisions adjacent to the project.
The project is unique in that it moves storm water via pipes and a natural channel. It includes many amenities including water quality features to treat storm runoff before it enters the river, recreational facilities, and aesthetics both along the freeway and next to the adjacent neighborhoods. Recreational facilities include park benches, 2.4 miles of bike trail, and a shade structure. Landscaping includes over 400 trees, 500 shrubs, boulder features, a windmill, and sculptural silhouettes. The cost of the project was $5.2 million.
The West I-40 Diversion Channel has won several awards:
- Engineering Excellence Award 2007, Water Resources Category Winner, from the American Council of Engineering Companies
- First Place 2006 from American Public Works Association, New Mexico Chapter
- Best of 2006 Award from Southwest Contractor/McGraw-Hill Construction, for the Engineering Design