Thursday, February 16, 2012

Albuquerque's Old Town Sees More Than 20 Businesses Shut Down in the Last Year


The other day I read an article on a DC-based progressive news blog which laughably contended that the economic recovery is really starting to gain steam--presumably to advocate for the reelection of our great and glorious "leader," President Hopey-Changey. Politcal reporters who spew such nonsense need to start spending more time out in the real word, say, downtown Albuquerque, New Mexico. Here is a local New Mexico television station with the story:
Albuquerque's Old Town looks more like a ghost town as more than 20 businesses have either closed or have moved out in the past year.

Business owners say the economy is hitting them hard, most report discouraging sales last year and say it's been extremely tough to stay afloat.

La Hacienda is closing its doors; the famous New Mexican restaurant has been open for more than 60 years and The Memories in Old Town Gallery is also going out of business.
And yet, hope still springs eternal, even when it doesn't make any sense at all:
"Old town is the heart of Albuquerque," said Karen Aceves, the owner of the Old Town Basket Store. "We may be beating a little slow right now but Old Town's heart will never stop beating."

She and her husband have owned their business for nearly 40 years. Aceves admits the situation looks bad right now, but she hopes the closures will breathe new life into the area.
That really is the most pathetic quote I think I've read yet from someone who believes that the economy just HAS to get better, because it always has in the past. They say it's darkest right before the dawn. But it's also darkest just before the last flickering light fades out forever.


Bonus: "Well they say...that Sante Fe...is less than 90 miles away"

4 comments:

  1. Citizen of Duct Tape AmericaFebruary 16, 2012 at 3:32 PM

    I live in Albuquerque and just today the Albuquerque Journal business section reports that The Old Town Card Shop is closing. It has been in business since 1957. The owner said she is stressed out and wants to retire but apparently the business can't afford to hire a replacement for her. The flip side is that many restaurants outside of Old Town are doing a very good business. Previous article about decrease in airline travel may partially explain Old Town's decline.

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    1. Having never visited Albuquerque (but having always wanted to), I kind of assumed that Old Town must be a tourist destination. Thanks for the local scoop.

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    2. I visited Albuquerque about 7 years ago and stayed in a hotel just two blocks from Old Town. It is indeed a tourist destination, consisting of about 2 square blocks of shops connected with pedestrian only walkways. There is a historic little church that is part of it. All the shops and restaurants sold lovely handmade arts such as pottery, metalworks, woven goods, baskets, etc. which created wonderful gifts and showcased area artists and regional culture. I was in the city to attend their hot air balloon festival, which is a very busy tourist week for the city, yet Old Town was not teeming with people and we had Albuquerque's fantastic aquarium and children's gardens almost completely to ourselves. :( And again, that was 7 years ago. I can only imagine the desperation they must face now. Heartbreaking ... it is a lovely place and far more worthy of a visit than other "manufactured vacation experiences" I could name.

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  2. "...closures will breathe new life into the area."
    Homeopathic Economic Solutions® again...

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