ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The City of Albuquerque wants to breathe some life back into the section of Central Ave. that sits across from the University of New Mexico and the plan could take some time. Now they have their eyes on the University area and it’s something people say is needed. “I think it’s great to revitalize. I think we have to keep in mind that a lot of people in this neighborhood don’t have a roof,” said resident Richard Chandler.

Most of the Central corridor is already has MRA designation. This makes the area eligible for everything from grants to incentives, however, there are a few holes that includes the section that spans from University to Girard. In the middle of that is the Brick Light District but there are also several empty and boarded-up buildings. The MRA estimates about 25% of all commercial space in the area is vacant and that’s where the MRA steps in.

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“Previous plans have identified things like the need for additional housing, so we partner with developers to bring in additional housing, or key infrastructure projects like the Rail Trail. So we’re working to build that to improve connectivity and pedestrian access,” said Karen Iverson, with the MRA.

They can also offer up grants for businesses to move in and partner with existing businesses to install new lighting, greenery, and even crosswalks. They’ve already seen some interest including the developer of the Brick Light District. The MRA has taken part in several other projects along Central from old Albuquerque High School to El Vado and the De-Anza. the plan could be in by July.

Before the MRA can develop their plan, the map of the area eligible must be approved by the public and eventually the city council. They are hosting their first public meeting on February 2 on Zoom at 5:30 p.m. To register for the meeting, visit