Route 66 News

Albuquerque mayor wants input on revitalizing Route 66

It’s going to be interesting to see how this shakes out later today:

The most interesting part of KOB-TV’s report on the mayor wanting to revitalize Central Avenue (aka Route 66) in Albuquerque is this:

Whatever the perfect formula is, Mayor Berry says he wants to find it and make Albuquerque’s star along Route 66 shine a little brighter.

“Really make it a place where if you came through the city of Albuquerque you would never think of going on the interstate, you would always want to get off and take Central Avenue and spend some time here,” said Berry.

Whether the mayor has historic preservation as part of his Route 66 revitalization idea is another matter.

The meeting is at 3:30 p.m. Albuquerque time today.

UPDATE: Another story was posted by KASA-TV a few hours after KOB’s. While the devil remains in the details, it seems the mayor is supportive of historic structures:

“This is one of the longest stretches of Route 66 in an urban area in America,” explained Mayor Berry. “We’ve got a lot of great neon, a lot of great history, a lot of great excitement.”

It’s excitement that the Mayor hopes will turn into expanded growth, tourism and more jobs in the near future.

He said one day he would like visitors to bypass the city’s freeway altogether and take Route 66 through town instead.

To make that happen the Mayor wants the city council to devise a plan that would offer tax incentives and enticements for growth for developers and businesses. He also wants to lift certain restrictions like sign ordinances and building codes, giving private developers more freedom.

“We’re just trying to cut the private sector loose to have a good time and be innovative on Central Ave.,” Berry said.

3 thoughts on “Albuquerque mayor wants input on revitalizing Route 66

  1. RT

    Great suggestions – parking garages galore, keep tearing down the old buildings, motels and history! Keep thinking of it by any other thing than Historic Route 66, and soon only it’s name will remain? Commercial development that’s what they’re after – so sorry, why would I want to get off the interstate there?

    Do yourself a favor on Route 66, pass up the big cities, and stay in the small towns – where Route 66 is still Route 66, and they actually care about you! Some may look a little like a ghetto or run down, but they’re really just small, quaint, sleepy old towns. In the big cities, they really are the ghetto – that’s a local on there, talking about walking around safely…

  2. Ed Klein

    I can find several older articles where ‘Mayor Berry’ wants to do ‘away with the eye sores (old buildings) and bring in the new structures and businesses.’

    You are right – it is one of those ‘wait and see’ type of things, but I usually pass around ABQ and spend a lot more quality time in the smaller, well deserving towns.

    You may call it hypocritical seeing what I try to do for the route, but you, I, and everyone else can only do so much and talk until we are blue in the face about the ‘facts’ of which what the HISTORIC Route 66 does for some of these larger cities.

    This is why I could never run for office in a big city, or live in one on the route….

    Ed
    Route 66 World

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