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El Camino Real National Historic Trail Development Concept Plan

El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro, the "Royal Road of the Interior," is the earliest Euro-American trade route in the United States. Linking Spain's colonial capital at Mexico City to its northern frontier in Ohkay Owingeh Pueblo, New Mexico, the route spans three centuries, two countries, and 1,600 miles. It was part of Spain's global trade network. The trail was blazed atop a network of footpaths that connected Mexico's ancient cultures with the equally ancient cultures of the American Southwest. The National Park Service added the route to the National Trails System in 2000. The development concept plan will focus on retracement of the historic trail through Bernalillo County and City of Albuquerque.

View the El Camino Real NHT in Bernalillo County map here

Project Objectives

  • Engage with the community, their experiences, and stories to bring the historic trail to life as a signature amenity in the region.
  • Highlight ways the national historic trail can play an important role in enhancing the future.
  • Provide an overall vision for the development of the NHT to include:
    • Preferred route(s) for a non-motorized retracement trail following the historic alignment.
    • Sites to be developed for the public to visit, experience, and learn about the historic trail.
    • Trail and site branding and design including materials, signage, interpretation, etc.
    • Maintaining consistency with other NPS/NHT development projects.
  • Review compatibility with existing plans or planned projects by local, state, and federal agencies.
  • Identify multiple NHT development types or cross sections for different right-of-way needs.
  • Provide character and design guidelines for retracement trail segments, visitor sites, trailheads, etc.
  • Identify funding and implementation efforts for concepts and opportunities identified in the plan.
  • Provide cost estimates for proposed development concepts.

General Project Information

Plan Consultant | MRWM
Plan Cost | $190,200
Notice to Proceed | January 2020
Funding | National Park Service Trails to Parks, Bernalillo County, City of Albuquerque
Partners include NPS, the City of Albuquerque, and UNM School of Architecture and Planning

Project Scope

Task 1: Initial Site Visits and Data Gathering
Task 2: First Series of Community Meetings – South Valley, Central Albuquerque, North Valley
Task 3: Draft DCP Alternatives
Task 4: 80% Draft DCP Review
Task 5: Second Series of Community Meetings – South Valley, Central Albuquerque, North Valley
Task 6: 95% Draft DCP Submittal
Task 7: City Council, County Commission Presentations
Task 8: Final DCP Submittal

Project Contact Information

Richard Meadows, AICP, Technical Planning Manager
(505) 848-1598

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