Dangerous, rundown homes and businesses are a dime a dozen in Albuquerque. Now, the city is reworking its program to tackle these problem properties, getting them fixed up or torn down sooner. 

Vacant properties can be found all over the city. The boarded up doors and windows and yellow substandard signs are hard to miss. To tackle the growing problem, the city plans to fund a unit called ADAPT, formerly called the Safe City Strike Force, with $700,000, according to the mayor’s proposed budget. 

No longer overseen by the Planning Department, ADAPT is moving to the Fire Marshal’s Office. The city will also create two new Solid Waste Department positions to do work on the properties, instead of hiring contractors. 

“There are a lot of abandoned and dilapidated buildings that have become a target for crime and a safety hazard for things like fires, and so we feel like this is a preventive program that will help us save resources on the back end, as we’ll have fewer calls for service,” said Sarita Nair, Chief Administrative Officer. 

Currently, the city has 333 properties on its substandard list, 75 of which are up for demolition.

KRQE News 13 spoke with City Councilor Pat Davis about how this moving of funds and revamping of the department could help with the properties, as the council has to vote to tear properties down. 

“It means we can do that a lot quicker, and if you’ve been waiting on a house in your neighborhood for a while to get fixed, we’re going to have the resources to go in and prioritize those to help neighbors,” said Pat Davis.  

The mayor’s office said the new program will create a scoring system to better keep track of properties with the most calls for service for police and fire, and target those first. 

Once those properties are put on the demo list, owners are given a year to fix them up before they’re brought before city council for demolition.