Route 66 revitalization plan advances

Updated: 05/17/2014 10:42 PM | Created: 05/17/2014 10:36 PM
By: Erica Zucco, KOB Eyewitness News 4

The city says it's one step closer to implementing the Route 66 Action plan. The Environmental Planning Committee has approved the initial plan draft, and has recommended it for approval to city council.

66 Diner is one of a few places left in Albuquerque that serves your meal with a side of nostalgia.

"The Golden Age, the 60s, the nostalgia - which is part of New Mexico too," one patron said.

The city wants to bring that feeling back to the rest of the "Mother Road."

"I think it'll bring more visitors, especially to downtown, which is needed," one Albuquerque resident said.

An in-depth draft of the plan details what's ahead, including preservation of historic motels and milestones, financial perks for developers who build homes and shops to fill in gaps that dilute Route 66, a Route 66 visitor's center and improvements to solve a problem that hurts residents as much as visitors.

"Traffic is probably the worst thing," one resident said.

They're changes meant to make Route 66 a destination, not just a thoroughfare.

"Even some of the shops, that would be ready to stop in some of these places, I think that's the appeal of a diner here, you can step a little bit back into that time," one patron said.

In all, the project will take time and money, but the city hopes the changes will boost Albuquerque's economy both through tourism and by revitalizing what could be a city center.

The city will hold its next public meeting on the plan in late summer.

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