Planning to Join Us, March 7-13? Here’s your guide for the week

We hope you’ve already circled the March 7-13 dates on your calendar. You won’t want to miss this week. We’ll be building on discussions about the future of the Central Avenue Corridor you may have contributed to over the last few months. It’s time now to take the next big step.

First of all, let’s remind ourselves how this week fits into the bigger picture. Over the past six months, as part of a federal grant, technical research, economic analyses and meetings with business folks and residents have set the table. All of that work was necessary. But the workshop week is something different. Because of all the efforts that have come before, we’re now ready to flesh out the links between that earlier stage of information gathering and goal setting and the next phase of implementing policies and plans that make the most of our opportunities.

The full schedule is here. But we know few can find time to come to every session. So the week is organized to offer multiple chances to catch up and weigh in on what’s happened so far, whether you do that in person or here online.

Here are some hints for figuring out how and when to participate.

Think of the week as a fast-moving progression, starting with the foundation we’ve built so far, then steadily moving towards a framework of implementation strategies that have broad support. The progression benefits by three cycles of presenting, reviewing and refining ideas.

We open Tuesday evening, March 7, with a community check-in to make sure that what we think we’ve learned so far matches the expectations of those who live and work along the Central Avenue corridor and in the broader Albuquerque area. Comments and clarifications gleaned that evening help focus meetings on neighborhood, business and poverty and equity concerns on Wednesday, March 8. Input from those sessions, in turn, helps us tweak work-in-progress ideas we offer for public critique the following evening, on Thursday, March 9.

After the Thursday night session, we’ll use everything we’ve learned to shape preliminary recommendations for next steps. That summing-up will come in the third and concluding cycle of presentation and public review on Monday evening, March 13.

As we move through the week, we’ll have the advantage of refining ideas not only in words, but also in illustrative design — illustrations of how transit stations and nearby neighborhood streets might look and how connectivity along the corridor might be enhanced if ideas were implemented.

Again, go here for times and places for all the meetings. If you can only come to one or two sessions, plan for the presentations on March 9 and March 13. That way, you can see how ideas have evolved during the week.

Interested in particular topics? Then, the sessions on Wednesday, including Joe Minicozzi’s presentation on the dollars and cents of connectivity, will be of special interest. And remember, you can follow along online in this space. Each morning during the workshop week, we’ll post reports, interviews, documents and images from the previous day.

Looking forward to seeing you in March.