by Ralph Routon
OK, it's Friday, just two weeks until Christmas, and the weather suddenly is looking better than it's been all week. So that means everyone who had thought of doing some holiday shopping in the past 5-7 days, but didn't, will be out on the streets this weekend, starting late this afternoon.
After a harrowing experience Wednesday night, I have one piece of advice: Avoid Woodmen Road.
If your destination is anywhere along the north-end corridor around Academy Boulevard north of Woodmen, do NOT try taking Woodmen east from Interstate 25 to Academy and turning north. The ongoing construction at the Woodmen-Academy intersection (eventually to become an interchange, someday) is creating serious traffic troubles, exacerbated by the combination of people who live in that vicinity and shoppers coming from elsewhere in the area. This isn't just about the rush hour. It's any time.
The smart, low-stress alternative is to take I-25 north to the Academy Boulevard exit, then take Academy south to Chapel Hills or whatever your shopping destination may be. It'll go much faster, and you'll live longer.
Whatever you do, steer clear of Woodmen-Academy, even during the day.