ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The City of Albuquerque has sent its bid to lawmakers asking for more than a hundred million dollars for construction projects through the state’s “capital outlay process.” That wish list has a few items you may not have heard about.
Nearly halfway through a 60-day legislative session, lawmakers are still debating which projects should receive funding. In January, Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller said his focus for state funding requests was directed at money to fight crime and building a homeless shelter.
“What we say is, ‘here’s our top priorities,’ Mayor Keller said during a January 12 news conference, speaking of the city’s legislative priorities. “And then we also say, ‘to invest in the future, here’s what we would also like,’ but you know it’s not that super top statewide priorities.”
According to a recently compiled list posted on the New Mexico Legislature’s website, there are at least around 50 projects the city is seeking funding for. Collectively, that list tops more than $100-million of requests.
Some of the top investment requests include $30-million for the city’s Gateway Center homeless shelter. More than six million dollars is being requested for projects related to expanding the city’s gunshot detection technology as well as the city’s future real-time crime and traffic center.
Some of the other bigger project funding requests include more than 5-million dollars for a potential Kiva Auditorium revamp inside the Albuquerque Convention Center. KRQE News 13 clarified with Albuquerque city officials Tuesday the request is worth $5.6 million in total. The state’s document lists a $65-million request for the project, an error the city called a “typo.”
Another $12-million is being requested to build a new warehouse for the city’s various museums and clerk’s office. Lawmakers are also reviewing a $30-million request for a new community center near Cibola High School in the Cottonwood-area. In all, the city’s wish list is worth well more than $100-million of projects, most of which the mayor considers “quality of life” projects.
“We’ve prioritized in a very stark and clear way,” Keller said in January. “We really need help in three things, and then to help our city build for the future, we’d love some help with quality of life.”
A representative of Mayor Keller’s administration was unable to interview with KRQE News 13 on the topic Tuesday. Other big-ticket requests on the list include $40-million that would go toward a potential new soccer stadium and $10-million for an indoor sports complex on the westside, next to the existing Jennifer Riordan Spark Kindness Regional Sports Complex.