By Associated Press - Friday, July 22, 2016

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - Albuquerque’s plans for building a rapid transit route along a stretch of Historic Route 66 has won federal approval, amid strong opposition from local shop owners who say the project could cost them customers and even their livelihoods.

The $119-million project backed by the city’s Mayor Richard Berry would build a system of express buses and canopy-covered stations along Central Avenue, which runs the route of the historic highway’s original roadbed.

Berry says the project is an investment that will spur development along the corridor and get people on the bus. He says the buses mimic the concept of light-rail trains that run through larger cities, like Phoenix and Denver.

The mayor’s office said Thursday that Federal Transit Administration gave the city the green light to move forward with construction.

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