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Film Future Taking Shape at the Rail Yards

Construction underway for world-class film training center in Albuquerque
February 06, 2024

ALBUQUERQUE –  Construction is underway to transform a part of the historic Albuquerque Rail Yards into a world-class film production training center. 

The project is a partnership between the City of Albuquerque, Central New Mexico Community College (CNM), and the New Mexico Economic Development Department. The iconic Boiler Shop building at the Rail Yards, once used to transfer heavy parts to train engines, is being transformed into a state-of-the-art training hub for future filmmakers, creating a workforce development pipeline for the state’s booming film industry and a contributing to economic revitalization for Downtown Albuquerque. CNM’s longstanding Film Production and Digital Media programs, as well as the State’s film training program (Media Arts Collective), will co-locate and share equipment and training resources at the facility.

“We’re excited to reach another important milestone as we make progress on the public’s investment in growing the film industry in New Mexico and supporting economic development in Downtown Albuquerque,” said CNM President Tracy Hartzler. “This state-of-the-art facility is going to increase access for New Mexicans to get high-quality film production training and begin careers that will help our film industry continue to thrive. We’re honored to continue this journey with our great partners at the State of New Mexico and the City of Albuquerque to deliver a world-class facility for New Mexicans and the film industry.”

“Together, we’re creating new opportunities for local students and families,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “This is the result of years of intentional re-investment. We look forward to having the New Mexico Media Arts Collective be an active part of our community as coming generations of film professionals get trained right here at home for the jobs they want.”

Once completed, the facility will offer industry-standard, hands-on, and craft-specific workforce training and job competencies for the film, television, and digital media industry. Along with soundstages, there will be classrooms, offices, post-production and flex spaces, featuring the most current equipment and technology. 

“We look forward to making this a hub for training the next generation of film production professionals who will help New Mexico remain as one of the country’s top filmmaking destinations,” said Chad Burris, Executive Director of the  New Mexico Media Arts Collective.

Voters approved bond funding for CNM to improve and expand their film production training facilities. Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham, with support from the New Mexico Legislature and the City of Albuquerque, has also allocated funds to build facilities and training programs that will deliver set-ready, skilled New Mexicans to fill jobs in the state's thriving film and television industry.

Students from across the state will be able to participate in the training opportunities, including students from Santa Fe Community College, Doña Ana Community College, Luna Community College, San Juan College, New Mexico State University, Institute of American Indian Arts, Eastern New Mexico University and Highlands University.

The facility is expected to be completed in late 2025, and open for classes and training in January 2026.