City to consider new pick-up location for Westside Emergency Housing Center

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — First Street and Indian School is one of several pick-up and drop-off spots for folks heading out to the Westside Emergency Housing Center.

Since the closure of Coronado Park last year, it’s where many people moved and set up camp.

“We see it every day,” said Connie Vigil, president of the Greater Albuquerque Business Alliance. “It’s violence, it’s attacks, it’s fires, it’s crime, a lot of crime due to drugs.”

Vigil lives in the area and owns a business nearby. Right now, the area is pretty clear – fences are up and crews spent part of Monday cleaning.

However, city officials said they are working on exploring other shelter stops, with the goal of replacing this one.

“The case is, every time there’s a bus stop, that’s where the camping is going to be,” Vigil said.

Albuquerque City Councilor Klarissa Pena is working on that alternative. She is sponsoring a bill that calls for a community discussion for a bus stop in southwest Albuquerque. An exact location is not mentioned.

“It’s just going to ruin another part of town,” Vigil said. “It’s really no solution.”

Vigil believes the solution is more services, food options, and more resources for folks at the shelter.