By Cassie McClure and Suzanne Michaels
Published in the Las Cruces Bulletin 11/1/19
Their foot traffic is currently gone, explained Farm Bureau Financial Services agent James Pacheco. He’s been watching the City of Las Cruces gas pipes being installed on Valley Drive as part of the Valley Drive road reconstruction by New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT). Underground utility main lines run underneath virtually all of our streets and roads, and anytime there is a major road reconstruction project, aging utility infrastructure is also upgraded.
Pacheco hopes access to the Farm Bureau building is restored soon. Right now, entry access is shared with Caliche’s customers next door during the project.
However, for the agents at the Farm Bureau Financial Services office, sharing is normal. Five different agents share a spot at 600 S. Valley Drive, including Pacheco, Michael Casaus, Joshua Souslby and David Barela. If you have an insurance or financial question, you’ll be guaranteed to leave with an answer. However, they’ll take phone calls or emails as well, and figure out other options to connect, like meeting you at your home, if that works for you.
“Plenty of our customers call in first and I like to tell my clients, I’ll come to you instead,” said Pacheco. He explains it might be confusing for clients trying to find the Farm Bureau Financial Service office right now; if they miss the entrance to Caliche’s,
customers have to drive all the way around. Pacheco and Casaus can be reached at 525-8643; Souslby and Barela can be reached at 647-9099.
The agents could sign up for a personalized street sign, provided free by the City of Las Cruces. Any business on Valley Drive affected by the road reconstruction is able to ask for their own personalized street sign, just by calling Traffic Management at (575) 541-2505
NMDOT and City of Las Cruces staff will answer any questions and update business owners and residents on the latest construction developments at monthly meetings at the Thomas Branigan Memorial Library, the next meeting is on November 19th at 6 p.m.
For immediate concerns, including access to Valley Drive businesses, please contact NMDOT project manager Ryan Tafoya at (575) 525-7313. NMDOT is now constructing the final phase of the Valley Drive road reconstruction, scheduled for completion in early 2020. The City of Las Cruces encourages residents to continue supporting local businesses on Valley Drive. More information about monthly Valley Drive update meetings at www.valleydrive.net.
PHOTO 1: There is plenty of NMDOT road reconstruction equipment in front of the Farm Bureau office at 600 S. Valley, but it’s the last bit of progress happening on Valley Drive right now. Give the Farm Bureau Financial Services office a call for routes to the office, or invite them for coffee at your place!