City Guide of Albuquerque, New Maxico
History: Albuquerque, New Mexico, is rich in history with its origins dating back thousands of years. Rio Grande Valley has been inhabited since 2,000 B.C. by the Pueblo people. In 1540 the first Spanish explorers came across the city under General Francisco de Coronado. Consequently, expeditions brought settlers into New Mexico’s river valleys. Later in 1706, colonists were given permission by King Philip of Spain to establish a new city on the banks of Rio Grande. The colony’s Governor Francisco Cuervo y Valdés, later sent a letter to the Duke of Albuquerque stating that the new founded city was further named as La Villa de Albuquerque to honor his name. The early Spanish settlers were devoutly religious, thus the first structure built was a chapel. That church is now the heart of the town, resembling and preserving its history. Albuquerque has grown to become a diverse and fairly high-tech Southwestern city, but somehow its cultural roots still remains a key part of society.
Location: Albuquerque is situated in the north central area of New Mexico, near the Rio Grande. The city falls under Bernalillo County. Encompassing areas of Rio Rancho, Bernalillo, Placitas, Corrales, Los Lunas, Belen, and Bosque Farms. Albuquerque is in close proximity to a variety of different interstates and highways. Including, but not limited to I-25, I-40, and Route 66. The town is in close driving distance to the Albuquerque Sunport Airport (ABQ), as well as an array of restaurants, shops, hotels, and more.
Commutes: Albuquerque is actually ranked one of the best in the nation when it comes to commuting, as it has multiple efficient highway systems for quick travel. The city is in between two major interstates — Interstates 40 and 25. The average driving time of in-state resident who is commuting by car is approximately 25 minutes. Which is way less than the national average. In addition, the city does offer public transportation such as ABQ Ride, Rapid Ride, and New Mexico Rail Runner Express.
Culture: With its rich history, Albuquerque maintains a unique Southwestern culture. The city is home to a diverse population of Native American, Hispanic, Latino, and Anglo cultures. It was ranked by American Style Magazine as part of the Top 25 Art Destinations for its art galleries and exhibitions. Albuquerque also hosts the Rio Grande Arts & Crafts International Balloon Fiesta along with a variety of food festivals and markets such as the 11th Annual Albuquerque Hopfest, Dragon Lights Albuquerque, and the Globalquerque World Music Festival.
The Albuquerque City Council is made up of nine different members who serve as the legislature for the city. This means that they have the power to adopt ordinances, rules, and regulations necessary to ensure better welfare of city residents.
Phone: (505) 768-3100
Address: 1 Civic Plz NW # 10, Albuquerque, NM 87102
The city Mayor works diligently to make the City of Albuquerque a safe, well-operated, and inclusive community by passing applicable ordinances. This is done by working towards increasing job opportunities for first responders and police officers as well as improving economic growth as a whole.
Phone: (505) 768-3000
Address: Address: 1 Civic Plz NW # 11, Albuquerque, NM 87102
Chamber of Commerce
The Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce has a mission to make the city a safe and inviting place to visit for both residents and tourists. They also aim to increase profitability for local businesses and work towards consistently improving the school system.
Phone: (505) 764-3700
Address: 115 Gold Avenue SW Suite 201, Albuquerque, NM 87102
Overview: All of the city’s schools fall under the Albuquerque Public Schools District (APS), which is the largest school district in the entire city of New Mexico and one of the largest in the United States. It is comprised of over 139 schools and more than 95,000 students. Within the APS District there is large mix of elementary, middle, high, and alternative schools. As well as private institutions, community colleges, and universities.For example the University of New Mexico, the University of New Mexico School of Medicine, and the University of Albuquerque. For elementary schools Dennis Chavez, North Star, and Hubert H. Humphrey are among the highest rated. La Cueva High School is also a notable public school located within Albuquerque, New Mexico.
School Districts: The Albuquerque Public Schools District (APS) encompasses the entire city of New Mexico. Unlike other cities which require students to attend schools based upon their particular location, New Mexico has an open enrollment policy. Otherwise known as the No Child Left Behind law. This law allows for students who are currently attending low-performing schools, as decided on by the state, to attend another school located within their district. Some districts even allow students to transfer to a school inside or outside of their district as long as there is availability for the student by the chosen school.
There are over twenty elementary schools located within Albuquerque, New Mexico. Four of which are rated well above average — Hubert H. Humphrey, Dennis Chavez, Double Eagle, and North Star Elementary School. These schools were given a 10 out of 10 for their exceptional education, student progress, and high test scores in reading, math, and science. Although the schools listed above are all public, the school district also has private institutions, schools for higher learning, and alternative schools available for students’ who so desire. For this option, Cien Aguas International school, Montessori Elementary, New Mexico International School, and Southwest Primary Learning Center, are quality selections.
The top rated middle school is the Albuquerque Institute of Math & Science. It is a public charter school serving students from grades 6th through 12th. The school aims to diligently prepare students in all subjects, but more particularly in the areas of math and science for their higher education and future careers. Eisenhower Middle, Cottonwood Classical Prep, and Desert Ridge Middle are other notable public schools. Students truly have their pick of thirty distinct middle schools each providing students with different programs and activities.
There are a bunch of middle schools located within the Albuquerque Public Schools District. Charter, public, private, and magnet schools are all options. Some schools are newly built, while others have been around as early as 1879. Namely Albuquerque High School. La Cueva High School, College and Career High School, and the Albuquerque Institute of Math & Science are all highly regarded. The Institute encompasses both middle and high school so students can transition smoothly between grades with familiar teachers, staff, and fellow students.
There are a whopping 83 private schools in the APS District serving over 12,000 students. Over 50% of the schools listed have some sort of religious affiliation. Most often religions include Roman Catholic or Christian faith. Private schools are offered for every grade level regardless if the student is in pre-kindergarten or high school. The average school tuition is generally in the thousands, but New Mexico does give out need-based funding to students who qualify for the program. Albuquerque Academy was named the best private school in New Mexico with Sandia Preparatory School, and Bosque School following closely behind.
Overview: The city offers a variety of different housing types. Depending on preference, single family homes, condos, townhomes, apartments, and even mobile homes, are available for rent and purchase. Almost half of these options contain three bedrooms or more. There is a mix of new construction apartments and homes as well as long standing apartments and homes. Generally a lower price will be a good indicator of how long the buildings have been around. To accomodate all residents, the Albuquerque Housing Authority (AHA) kindly offers the opportunity to obtain affordable housing. One must simply apply through the website and wait to hear back for qualification via phone or email contact by the AHA. After, the applicant will then be placed on a list for housing that matches preferences such as desired housing type, bedrooms, area, and more.
Single Family Homes
In Albuquerque the amount of single family homes for rent and for sale are almost equivalent. Most homes have been around since the 1970’s, but there is also a ton of new construction available in the city. Neighborhoods Bear Canyon, Huning Castle, Nob Hill, North Valley, and Spruce Park are some of the best neighborhoods to reside in. As they are widely-known to be quality options for young professionals and families alike.
Albuquerque apartments range greatly in prices, area, and square footage. There is a wide array of high-end luxury options as well as affordable housing. Apartments generally range from two to three bedrooms, but additional bedrooms and studio apartments can be found. There are also apartments strictly reserved for students who attend nearby colleges such as Central New Mexico Community College and the University of New Mexico Central Campus. Current residents claim that Albuquerque Uptown Village, Sandia Shadows Apartments, Overlook Apartments, and Olympus Solaire are great places to live.
Highrises are few and far between in the city. However, the closer you get to the Central Albuquerque area the more listings there will be. Most, if not all of the properties available are new construction and range from studio to three bedrooms. Some floor plans also have private patios. Many high rises offer residents amenities like pool and gym access that are included with the cost of rent. If you are a pet owner, properties occasionally allow dogs and cats for an additional monthly fee and one time pet deposit.
There are over forty neighborhoods in Albuquerque that qualify as “new construction.” A large majority of the newly built properties are single family homes. Residents have their pick of over 200 floor plans when deciding on which new home or apartment works for them. Pulte, Raylee, Sivage, DR Horton, Centex, KB Homes, and Summer Tree Homes are some of the builders located within the Albuquerque area. Listings stretch all the way from downtown to Rio Rancho and Bernalillo surrounding areas.
If you desire a low-cost alternative, mobile homes can make homeownership easier to achieve. Albuquerque has multiple mobile home communities scattered all throughout the city. Some are restricted to “senior” residents while others are inclusive to all ages to make for a family style resort community. Albuquerque Meadows, Four Hills Mobile Home Park, and Meadowbrook Family Community are just a few of what Albuquerque has to offer when it comes to mobile home communities.
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Overview: The diversity of things to do in Albuquerque is unparalleled. Residents can go mountain biking in the morning, shopping during the day, and then head to a fine-dining restaurant at night. Albuquerque, World Balloon, is rated as the number one best thing to do in the city. The company has been around for over 40 years offering scenic balloon rides to people who want to see the city from a whole new view. Albuquerque also hosts an array of festivals and markets all year round. Try visiting the Indian Pueblo Cultural Center if learning about the history of the city interests you. Old Town is also an Albuquerque “must do.” The colorful buildings and cobblestone streets have been around for over 300 years. While here you can see unique shops, try authentic food, and even see street performers along the way.
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Parks & Recreation
There is no shortage of parks and recreation in the city. Nearly 300 parks are scattered around the city ranging from dog parks to skate parks. In addition, residents can play tennis, baseball, basketball, football, and more at Albuquerque’s multiple outdoor recreation facilities. There is even a Shooting Range Park to fine tune the skills for personal protection and hunting.
Like mentioned above, Old Town Albuquerque is a great place to visit for unique shops. Skip Maisel’s, The Candy Lady, and Blue Portal are also local treasures. If shopping malls are more your style, there is also ABQ Uptown and Cottonwood Mall which both have a wide selection of stores.
Art & Culture
Albuquerque is rated as one of the best arts destinations in the world. The performing arts community in the city is booming. With places like the National Hispanic Cultural Center, Keshet Dance Company, KiMo Theater, and Tricklock Company, leading the way for a thriving arts scene.
Whatever you may be into on your night off, Albuquerque has. Q Bar, an upscale nightspot, has been recognized for a variety of awards including “Best Lounge,” “Best Ladies Night Out,” and more. Apothecary Lounge, Billy’s Longbar, Kelly’s Brew Pub, and Downtown Stillery, are also city favorites.
Albuquerque offers almost every single cuisine imaginable. Some of the freshest and most delicious restaurants include Fork & Fig, The Copper Lounge, Cocina Azul, Rosemary, and The Grove Cafe and Market. They are all moderately priced and range anywhere from the Old Town to the Downtown area.
Overview: There are multiple neighborhoods in Albuquerque, each of which has its own unique personality and charm. Historic Old Town, Downtown, Nob Hill, airport area, Midtown, Uptown, Eastside, Balloon Fiesta Park, North Valley, Westside, Barelas South Valley, and the Rio Rancho/East Mountains are the main areas within Albuquerque. If you embrace the bustling of city streets Downtown may be the best option. On the other hand, North Valley is a great place to raise a family with its large lots and spacious grassland. College students might enjoy living in Nob Hill, an up and coming hipster neighborhood. As it is right next to the University of New Mexico, and is considered one of the most walkable areas in Albuquerque. While nature lovers will truly appreciate the East Mountains. This neighborhood offers some of the best hiking trails around as it is situated right next to the stunning Cibola National Forest.
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