What's going on, Albuquerque?
So five new restaurants. Everything you need to know about Downtown is that an "Italian hot dog stand" is a restaurant. (If you remove the wheels from a cart vendor, is it a restaurant?) Where does the patronage for these new eateries come from if not from existing businesses? The Arts District has been kicking around for ten years or more, but it always comes down to the same thing. Artists need low rents. Will Downtown propery owners oblige?
Dennis and Chris is/were working with UNM's School of Architecture and Planning...I'm sure the exhibit is still up over at 100 Gold. Here's the Announcement. There were a number of things proposed...right near the door step of the City Planning Department.
All kinds of interesting things were proposed.
@Hunter - I had completely forgotten about the Central Market that never was! And I'm still mourning the loss of Carey Smoot's little grocery shop downtown. I keep thinking that maybe downtown will get a grocery store by the time I'm a little old lady whose driver's license has been pulled by the state...
I hope this is true. Especially if the restaraunts stay open late enough to attract crowds other than the usual "let's get plastered" crowd that frequents the bars. I am especially hoping the jazz bar that is opening soon does real well. ABQ's jazz scene has faded to the point where only a handful of venues even offer jazz...and those musicians like myself have very few places to not only hear our fellow musicians,let alone get a chance to sit in and play something other than the top 40 crap that frequents the airwaves and every other live music venue here.
Maybe the infusion of new restaraunts and clubs will help clean up Central,Gold and the other streets,so that after 5 PM it won't be the destination of drunky-drunks and homeless and gangbangers. I busk downtown almost every weekend-usually in the Gizmo foyer-and it's hard to really get an audience when the gangbangers and drunky-drunks harass anyone and everyone that comes to listen to what I'm playing. (I'm the girl who plays Coltrane and bop and whatever else I can think of on trombone every weekend,BTW)
Just remember,folks:the last time the local pols wanted to bring "new things" to downtown,it was our previous mayor,who wanted to bring "Hannah Montana" and "family-friendly" events and venues. We all know what happened with that,don't we? But I am keeping my fingers crossed here,and hope that whatever opens up does well.
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