Committee pushes new design guidelines for 4th Street

Local News

ALBUQUERQUE, NM (KRQE) – The city is pushing a plan to give a very busy street a much-needed makeover.

The so-called Character Protection Overlay for Fourth Street from downtown to the North Valley could mean a very different look.

“The city recognizes that we’ve certainly got diverse neighborhoods in our city and those unique aspects of those neighborhoods we want to protect,” Planning Department Director Brennon Williams said.

The city’s Environmental Planning Commission is looking to do that with proposed design guidelines for portions of Second, Third, and Fourth streets stretching from Mountain in downtown to just north of Montano.

“I guess it would be good to fix the buildings and stuff like that but I like to keep the rural look of what the North Valley has,” Gilbert Gonzales of Los Ranchos stated.

The zoning map amendment includes specific rules for building facades; limiting building height to 55 feet; and adding wide sidewalks, landscaping, and vegetation.

“Making the thoroughfares more inviting and encouraging multi-modal transportation types, so that would include bicycles, cars, people walking,” Williams added.

These new rules wouldn’t change what already exists along the more than 4-mile stretch, but they are meant to shape how the area will look over the next 25 years and give developers requirements for their new businesses or residential projects while enhancing the character of the area.

“We’ve identified some unique characteristics, particularly related to building design, that we as the city and the community wants protected,” Williams said.

The public can weigh in at the EPC’s hearing on Dec. 12, then the commission will make its recommendation to city council.
If this plan passes, it could go into effect early next year.

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