ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – With the New Mexico State Fair hours away, and thousands of visitors expected, some are wondering if the Central corridor near the fairgrounds will give the city a bad look. “Anybody from New Mexico that comes to Albuquerque that comes to the state fair knows that it’s crime-ridden that we have homeless people that are everywhere,” said Albuquerque resident, Sam Lake.
After a drive down Central, dozens of homeless people can be seen wandering up and down the street, some panhandling in the median of Central and Louisiana and several others setting up camps in nearby streets close to the fairgrounds. Some residents say they’ve reported these concerns to the city, but when the city clears the encampments, they pop right back up and bring lots of trash.
“Oh yeah, constant, constant trash. I am very angry. I was really happy that they sent the dumpster guys the garbage men because that was a solution but they are going to have to do it on a regular basis,” said Lake.
A city spokesperson with the Department of Solid Waste says crews regularly clean the areas around the fairgrounds. They say the area around the fairgrounds was cleaned of weeds and litter last week and crews will continue working cleaning up any debris in the surrounding area throughout the fair. The city’s Community Safety Department says it will also have a higher presence near the fairground, offering help and services to the homeless and people suffering from mental health and addiction issues.