ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Albuquerque city officials held a news conference Tuesday June 21, to announce the launch of a new downtown program called, ‘Downtown TEAM.’ The Targeted Enforcement and Active Monitoring, or TEAM, is a program where the city is partnering with businesses downtown to increase police presence.

“This is not the downtown patrol that walks around during the day. That’s going to continue. This is on top of that. To actually enforce crimes that are happening downtown,” said Mayor Tim Keller.

The new program is scheduled to start after July 4, the main issue officials hope to address is public safety. Mayor Tim Keller says the city will be opening a new police station downtown, which is scheduled to be open later this summer. APD cameras and license plate readers were added to monitor the area. They will also be adding lights throughout downtown, including the various alleys.

The new initiative also includes having officers present at peak times in the right places, like when the bars close on weekends and different parking lots where people tend to gather. Another time highlighted by officials is evening hours when people may be out eating dinner or walking through the area.

Many nearby businesses are on board, but the mayor said more need to join the initiative for the program to be funded year round. “We recently had an employee that was shot and killed in the alley and it was a horrible experience so I know first hand about crime down here so anything that we can do to make it better definitely be happy to be apart of,” said Steve Vatoseow, a downtown business owner.

Mayor Keller says they have $90,000 in pledges for the project that is set to start after July 4th. The funding comes from the One Albuquerque Fund which relies on community donations.