Santa Fe police say a man was severely injured in a hit-and-run Friday night on South St. Francis Drive.

Neal Rosendorf was walking near the intersection of St. Francis and Pen Road around 9:30 p.m. when he was struck by what witnesses described as a late-2000s silver sedan that fled the scene, Lt. Thomas Grundler said.

Rosendorf, who told police he was “just out for a walk” that night and was hit while crossing the street, was left with life-threatening injuries. He is now in stable condition, Grundler said.

Witnesses gave officers varying descriptions of the make and model of the car that hit Rosendorf, listing Toyota, Ford and Kia as possibilities.

Grundler declined to provide Rosendorf’s age or say which hospital he was taken to for treatment after the incident.

Police are seeking information from the public on the hit-and-run. The department asks anyone with information to contact Officer Arthur Maes at ammaes@santafenm.gov or at 505-955-5685.

(4) comments

Bobbie Ferrell

Thank you Khal for clarification of speed limit postings. I actually went out today and checked St. Francis from well north of Cerrillos, where there actually is a sign for 35mph. However, even looking for them, I saw no more signs until after St. Michaels going south, 45 is posted. Much traffic turns onto St. Francis south from the Cerrillos intersection and probably like most, people think it's 45 mph. I will follow up on the speed situation. The limit should be lower, there should be flashing lights on the signs, and there should be signs noting pedestrian areas. I've been here 16 years and visited often for many years before that. I do think it is much worse than my memory of earlier years, but now it's really just an extension of I-25.

Khal Spencer

Hi Bobbie. Thanks for the reply. We moved here three years ago from Los Alamos and have been visiting Santa Fe for nearly a quarter century, when we moved to NM. We are near the N. end of town and the speeding coming down the hill from the highway portion is pretty amazing. I think, from casual observation, that drivers don't slow down from highway speeds until they hit the Camino de las Crucitas/Paseo de Peralta intersection.

As Chuck Marohn, the President of Strong Towns, has said, If you built a highway, people treat it like a highway (full disclosure, I'm a Strong Towns member). There is just too much of St. Francis that looks like a highway. Sure, you get the occasional knucklehead who will go warp speed on city streets but high speeds on normal city streets are rare. St. Francis is not a normal city street. Its a state highway carved through a city. That, to me, is the root cause of the speeding.

(bona fides: I was a member and/or chair of the Los Alamos County Transportation Board, 2003-2017)

Khal Spencer

Back roughly fifteen or so years ago, the late Dr. Gail Ryba, who was President of the Bicycling Coalition of New Mexico, fought the State Dept. of Transportation over the expansion of St. Francis to three lanes in each direction and thereby eliminating any chance for bicycle facilities. What DoT wanted to do was increase motor vehicle level of service (roadway vehicle capacity without massive delays) and IMO, ended up sacrificing anything else. Couple that with the high speed on the road (I think it is posted 35 at Pen but up to 45 in other places and from what I can tell, a lot of folks here think speed limits are for other people), and you have all the makings of a pedestrian death trap if someone makes a mistake. This road is the classic "stroad", i.e., a high speed, at-grade highway through a city.

https://www.strongtowns.org/journal/2018/3/1/whats-a-stroad-and-why-does-it-matter

But responding to Ms. Ferrell, this is under state jurisdiction, not the city. Folks need to direct criticisms at the State DoT and our state legislators, who ultimately fund these disasters. Until the paradigm of "more room for more cars, all the time, everywhere" changes, this is the design we are stuck with, and pedestrian safety as well as carbon mitigation be danged.

Bobbie Ferrell

I live in this area and one reason I chose it was I missed urban energy and I thought I'd enjoy the walking life. I'm two blocks from the Trader Joe's shopping block but unfortunately I'm on the west side. Turns out I hardly ever cross St. Francis on foot. The speeding is terrible. When we went into "stay at home" orders I started walking every day. For several months there was less traffic and I did enjoy walking in that direction and over to the rose park. However, we're back to high level traffic and St. Francis traffic is dangerous. That 45 mph speed limit is not observed - I've done my own clocking many times during the day and going 45 everyone passes me. The speed limit should be dropped to 35 most. It's not I-25 but you'd think people think they have already gotten up on the interstate. I'm thinking of investigating what the process is for getting a speed limit lowered. I wonder how many speeding tickets are given on St. Francis? I imagine very few. Once in a while I have seen a speed monitor out close to Zia Rd - but haven't up here where so many people walk, and there are bus stops and the South Capitol Station that people walk to. In the distance between town and I-25 you cannot make useful time by speeding down St. Francis. It's recklessness plain and simple. I hope the pedestrian recovers.

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