Downtown FORWARD

Downtown FORWARD: News, events, and updates.

The Draft Plan

The Draft Plan

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Downtown Albuquerque is the intersection of Route 66, the Atchison Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad, Pueblo Indian trade routes, and El Camino Real. It is the cultural crossroads of the southwest. It remains the employment, transportation, and tourism hub for New Mexico. Like all downtowns across the world, downtown Albuquerque experienced significant challenges over the past two years. As the pandemic recedes, the importance of vibrant urban spaces that invite us to congregate and celebrate is reemerging. Despite their small geographic size, downtowns punch above their weight when it comes to economic and fiscal impact. Their vitality is also essential to attracting new businesses wanting a vibrant urban center for their workforce.


During the pandemic, the Metropolitan Redevelopment Agency (MRA) conducted extensive outreach and stakeholder interviews to determine how the City can assist in elevating downtown to the vision we desire. Public Safety ECHO conducted meetings twice a month with downtown businesses, residents, workers and public safety officials to identify solutions. These seven strategies emerged as the most essential steps to creating a healthy, safe, and vibrant downtown district:


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The DRAFT of the Downtown FORWARD plan can be viewed HERE.


Please submit your comments and feedback.  We want to hear from YOU.  Are we prioritizing the right strategies?  How can we measure success? What are your ideas for making downtown safe, fun, and inclusive?

For the Love of Downtown

For the Love of Downtown


What makes cities lovable? 

What motivates ordinary people to do extraordinary things for their places? 

How are some cities using that energy to fill in the gaps that “official” city makers have left? 


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Peter Kageyama is the author of For the Love of Cities: The Love Affair Between People and Their Places, and his latest, The Emotional Infrastructure of Places.  He is the former President of Creative Tampa Bay, a grassroots community change organization and the co-founder of the Creative Cities Summit, an interdisciplinary conference that brings citizens and practitioners together around the big idea of ‘the city.’


Peter is a Senior Fellow with the Alliance for Innovation, a national network of city leaders that is dedicated to improving the practice of local government.   Since speaking to them in 2013, Peter has become a special advisor to America In Bloom.  He is an internationally sought-after community development consultant and grassroots engagement strategist who speaks all over the world about bottom-up community development and the amazing people who are making change happen.


On June 1, 2022 the KiMo Theatre welcomed Peter Kageyama as the "For the Love of Downtown" keynote speaker.



The Value of Downtown Albuquerque

The Value of Downtown Albuquerque

No city or region can succeed without a strong downtown, the place where compactness and density bring people, capital, and ideas together in ways that build the economy, community and identity. Despite their small geographic size, downtowns deliver significant economic & community benefits across both the city and region.
International Downtown Association recently completed a study on the Value of Downtown Albuquerque. Comparing downtown Albuquerque to other emerging markets, Albuquerque has several strengths including the development of affordable housing, disproportionately higher fiscal returns, and lower energy emissions by residents.
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Read the full study here.

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May 20, 2022: Value of Downtown Webinar

Cathy Lin from International Downtown Association hosted an informative webinar on May 20, 2022, outlining some key facts and findings from the Downtown study.  Her slideshow presentation can be found here. 
To access the full webinar recording, please click here.