City leaders announce plans to revitalize downtown Albuquerque

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – On Tuesday, city leaders came together to lay down plans to get downtown Albuquerque to the next level. 

The details for improving downtown are boiled down in a 17-page plan – a comprehensive description of ways to make a major part of the city a place people want to be.

“Successful, thriving cities have successful, thriving downtowns,” said Terri Cole with the Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce.  

The chamber of commerce believes in it, and so does the mayor.

“We actually now need fundamentals. We need a downtown that is safer, we need a downtown that is more pleasant to be in, we need a downtown that is easier to do business in, we need a downtown with more things to do,” said Mayor Tim Keller. 

The plan points to a number of initiatives, among them are downtown-focused projects like the “Albuquerque Rail Trail,” improving public safety, and addressing housing and homelessness.

Continuous shuttles are planned to help get downtown homeless to the Gateway Center once it starts treating and housing the homeless.

The city has plans for all those tall downtown buildings, too.

“They can be commercial, they can be residential, people can live there, they can work there. Most importantly, they can do both,” said Keller. 

And when it comes to public safety, Albuquerque Police Department Deputy Chief Josh Brown is promising this:

“If you come downtown to commit crimes, if you come downtown to disrupt people’s socialization, disrupt economic development, we will take you to jail. It’s that simple.”

“There basically is almost zero cities in America that are prosperous and thriving that do not have a thriving downtown,” said Keller. 

A full copy of the “Downtown Forward” plan can be found here.