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Door Opens For Albuquerque With Win of Big Living Cities Grant

Industry: Commerical Building

Albuquerque has received a $100,000 Living Cities grant to plan out its long-term transportation, innovation and job-growth strategies.

Albuquerque, NM (PRUnderground) April 28th, 2014

Albuquerque has received a $100,000 Integration Initiative grant from the New York-based Living Cities, Incorporated to plan out its long-term transportation, innovation and job-growth strategies.

“What this is really about is, ‘Ok, we’ve got this huge overarching goal: how do we figure out where are assets are, our key strengths, our key opportunities and where do we lift up where there are barriers or impediments to us achieving those things,’” says Robin Brule, Coordinator of the Living Cities effort from City Hall.

The Living Cities concept brings together nearly two dozen of the largest international financial institutions and charitable groups, with the single idea of helping the nation’s urban core address its problems, plan strategically for the future and grow.

Living Cities boasts a sterling membership roster that includes the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, and the Bank of America, among other participants.

In other words, for cities that win Living Cities’ ultimate approval, money isn’t a problem: five cities making it to the last round of the group’s process received between $12 million to $20 million each.

Albuquerque didn’t come by the $100,000 easily. It was one of many cities to apply for the grant. In the end, New Orleans, San Antonio, San Francisco and Seattle also received $100,000 Living Cities grants.

If it’s lucky, Albuquerque could join such past recipients as Minneapolis-St. Paul, which received $16 million through Living Cities for, among other things, developing transit-accessible affordable housing; or Detroit with $17 million for reusing vacant land and developing sustainable corridors; or Baltimore, which received $19 million for improving impoverished neighborhoods and focusing on job creation.

Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry said the initial $100,000 Living Cities grant is in response to the city’s focus on revitalizing its downtown, building a bus rapid transit system on Central Avenue, and the creation of the University of New Mexico’s “Innovate ABQ” initiative at the corner of Broadway Boulevard and Central.

In a statement, the Mayor added that the grant provides the city with what he called “an extraordinary opportunity” to bring leaders together “to address challenges and seek solutions right here at home.”

For more information on the Living Cities grant contact Robin Brule, Living Cities Grant Coordinator, City of Albuquerque at (505) 768-3000 or rbrule@nmefcu.org.

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