ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – How well do you know your neighborhood? A new event in Albuquerque hopes people get out and explore the city — by foot. It’s called an “urban walk” and they’re held in more than 200 cities around the world, including here in Albuquerque, starting this weekend.
Back in the 1960s, a woman named Jane Jacobs rallied her neighborhood to stop an expressway from being built in Greenwich Village. “It was sort of a battle cry to protect neighborhoods,” said David Ryan, the Albuquerque organizer of Jane’s Walk. “She organized all the people in her neighborhood and they put a stop to that and that started this urban revival movement.”
That sparked hundreds of yearly walks around the world, celebrating neighborhoods and their art and culture. This weekend, Jane’s Walk is coming to Albuquerque.
“Because we only turned green in Bernalillo County just a couple days ago, these are set up as self-guided walks,” said Ryan. “What we’re hoping is that if these people do these self-guided walks, next year we can make this a bigger event with volunteer-led walks.”
The five walks highlight neighborhoods like Old Town, Wells Park, and Nob Hill. The downtown and Barelas walk spans 2nd to 8th Streets and Central to Atlantic, featuring spots like the historic Sidetrack Brewing building and the Church of Music mural downtown.
“We pretty much scraped together six months of news articles from Downtown Albuquerque News, put a location on them, and made them into a walking tour,” said Peter Rice, editor of Downtown Albuquerque News and one of the walk’s creators. “Some stuff you know and love like the Railyards and some stuff you’ve probably never heard of like the location of the house where the first Hispanic U.S. senator once lived.”
The Mountain Road arts corridor shows the creative side of Albuquerque, from statues to murals and even carved wooden barbershop poles. Organizers hope the walks will inspire others to learn more about our historic neighborhoods.
“There are some very interesting interesting, walkable neighborhoods in Albuquerque,” said Ryan. “The idea of wandering is letting yourself see and then letting what you see guide you on where you go and you just keep finding more and more and more.”
This is the first year Albuquerque has held Jane’s Walks with the hopes to make it an annual tradition. While this weekend’s walks are set for May 8-9, you can follow the walking paths any time of the year.
These are this year’s Albuquerque Jane’s Walks, including maps and notable places to stop:
- Mountain Road arts corridor
- Downtown Corridor and Barelas
- Old Town and the Sawmill District
- Troche Moche walk around Wells Park
- Nob Hill architectural walk