ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The stretch of Central from Downtown to Old Town has undergone a major makeover over the past decade or so. Now, one of the last blighted properties is about to get new life.
Up and down along Central, you’ll see condos, apartments, and restaurants, and a pair of abandoned houses sits right in the middle of it all.
Dwight Auten has been living in that part of town for 30 years and said this development will be very positive for the area. This new development could soon be coming to Sixteenth and Central in West Downtown.
“When I first moved here, tourism was pretty good. People walk by our house. I sit on the porch and everything and then it declined down, but I believe it’s on the way back up,” said Auten.
The property is now an empty lot but recently it looked like this, with two vacant homes.
“You know, when you’re trying to renovate a corridor of the city like Central, you want to have the least amount of vacant space as possible you want to engage people along that sidewalk so that they’re seeing store fronts,” said Metropolitan Redevelopment Director Terry Brunner.
The four-story Pearl will have 34 units with retail space on the ground level.
Len Romano is the vice president of Ripe Inc, a nearby business.
“I’m all for progress and forward movement anybody that wants to invest in Albuquerque, especially on Route 66, where we’ve had a tough time in the last few years,” said Romano. “Anybody that wants to create something and bring something new and a spark of life and a spark of energy, that’s great. You know, we should all be for that.”
The project is expected to cost almost $8 million. There’s no word yet on when construction could start.
The developer is looking for $250,000 in property tax breaks as part of the city’s push to fix up run-down areas. The proposal will go in front of the Albuquerque Development Commission next week.
To see the full tax proposal, click here.