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City Investing $500,000 to Promote Central Avenue, Support Local Business

Route 66 RFP

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M — Mayor Tim Keller and City Council President Pat Davis announced an investment of half a million dollars into promoting Central Avenue in support of the local businesses that line Route 66. The City is seeking a professional marketing firm to develop and implement a marketing plan to promote Albuquerque’s Central Avenue as a destination and Albuquerque Rapid Transit (ART) as a way to access it. The campaign would be geared to bring locals back to Central, but also emphasize attracting tourists.

“After years of ART construction and now the impact of COVID-19, the businesses on Central need our support more than ever,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “We are going to use this time to make sure that when we get through this challenge, people come back to Route 66. With this investment now, we hope to help prime our community for a comeback all up and down Central.”

“The majority of Central Avenue businesses are locally-owned and bring an incredible energy to the community. My vision for this effort was to get both locals and tourists back in these establishments which will reinvigorate the corridor and lead to additional investment,” said City Councilor Pat Davis.

Central Avenue, part of historic U.S. Route 66, has long served as America’s Mainstreet, a critical driver of small business and job creation. Central Avenue blends boutiques and restaurants, bars and tattoo parlors with some of Albuquerque’s most prominent arts and culture attractions, and connects neighborhoods and business districts from one side of the city to the other.

The selected marketing firm will restore perception of Central Avenue and increase visitors for local businesses.

“Small businesses are the backbone of Albuquerque’s economy and the Central Avenue corridor is critical to the prosperity of the whole city. We know that businesses along the Central Avenue corridor have suffered in recent years,” said City of Albuquerque Economic Development Director Synthia Jaramillo. “With ART now in operation we are turning the page and looking for creative and innovative ways to rebuild and support the business district along Central Avenue.”

The selected firm will be required to collaborate extensively with business owners, property owners, neighborhood associations, and community groups along the Central Corridor, and will focus on activities that will benefit businesses both during the current public health emergency and after public health restrictions have been lifted.

The overall goals of the RFP include:

  • Increased consumer traffic along Central Avenue;
  • Increased sales revenue among Central Avenue businesses;
  • Increased revenues from Gross Receipts Tax, Lodgers’ Tax and Hospitality Fees as a result of a rise in visitation and tourism;
  • Increased positive media coverage;
  • Increased number of hotel bookings;
  • Increased ridership on Albuquerque Rapid Transit and all Central Ave bus lines;
  • A more vibrant, energetic, attractive street environment resulting from increased use of Central Avenue’s assets;
  • Increased public perception and awareness of Central Avenue including businesses, events, amenities, safety, parking, etc.

More information and full details of the RFP are available at https://cabq.bonfirehub.com/portal/?tab=openOpportunities

Responses are due by April 28, 2020.

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