Downtown Albuquerque, which runs down old Route 66, is a must-see destination. It is part of the Historic District and well on its way to becoming one of the most pedestrian friendly areas of Albuquerque, NM.
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Although some of the buildings along Central are older, the street itself predates any of the structures that we see today. Central Avenue has had quite a history. Once a major road into early Albuquerque, this dusty trail leading down to the river became more important as Albuquerque grew throughout the 1700s and 1800s. According to an excellent history of the area, by Robert Wood et al., “…merchants, immigrants, and even armies plodded along some of the same stretches that are often jammed with traffic today”.
Central was originally named Railroad Avenue, as businesses and homes were built around the rail yards. Later, people were drawn to Albuquerque for the health-giving dry air and the Presbyterian Sanitarium was built. As a result of that early sanitarium and others, Railroad Avenue became popularly known as “TB Avenue.” In recognition of that street’s emerging role as the main street of Albuquerque, it was renamed Central Avenue in 1907.
In 1937, Route 66 was straightened, bringing tourists through the area, actually saving them 107 miles of travel, which they loved. The now famous Route 66 roadside architecture provided places to stay and to eat.
Downtown Albuquerque has continued to go through much revitalization now providing great places to shop and eat. It also is home to the historic KiMO Theater built in 1926. In fact, one benchmark of the continuing revitalization of Central Avenue and Downtown was the purchase of the historic KiMo Theater by the city and its renovation, which began in 1978. The KiMo was rededicated and reopened as a public performance theater in 1982. This beautiful theater is a must see as you walk downtown.
When you come to stay at the Downtown Historic Bed and Breakfasts of Albuquerque, you are within walking distance of all of these great attractions. If you are here for an event at the Albuquerque Convention Center you can walk to it, as well as many other great attractions beautiful downtown Albuquerque has to offer.
Enjoy the rich history of downtown Albuquerque when you come to stay with us.