Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Santa Barbara/Martineztown Neighborhood Handbook and Design Guidelines

Hola, Vecinos !

We've received the draft Neighborhood Handbook and Design Guidelines from the City of Albuquerque Planning Department (Landmarks and Urban Conservation).  This document will help us as we move forward towards protecting the historic character of our neighborhood. 

Please click on the link below to access the full text of the Handbook.  The Purpose and How to Use sections are reproduced below.  We need feedback from all of you on this topic, so please have a look and let us know what you think.

Neighborhood Handbook and Design Guidelines

Purpose of the Guidelines

These design guidelines are intended to provide a framework for encouraging building rehabilitation and new construction that celebrates and enhances the simple yet historic architectural style and community quality of Santa Barbara /Martineztown. They encourage that work done on properties complement the overall context of the neighborhood. Whether you are a homeowner planning to renovate your house or a developer planning to building commercial or residential units, these guidelines should help to build in a cohesive, neighborhood sensitive way.

In general, these guidelines:

o Provide a user-friendly, illustrated document for residents, property owners developers and interested parties;
o Provide a history and architectural inventory of Santa Barbara/Martineztown;
o Provide direction for homeowners and investors for appropriate rehabilitation of existing buildings and design of new construction to enhance the neighborhood quality and character;
o Assist residents in maintaining existing houses;
o Assist residents and businesses in incorporating Crime Prevention Through Environment (CPTED) principles in property maintenance to promote neighborhood safety and well-being; and
o Provide a list of possible assistance sources for community and property improvement.

How to Use the Guidelines

The guidelines are meant to be used voluntarily by residents to improve and maintain their property. They are also intended to be a cooperative guide for use by government administrators and investors to insure quality design that is expressive of the SBMT culture and history.

These guidelines include:

o Neighborhood History and Character
o Architectural Styles
o Basic Design Elements and ideas for improvements
o Additional Design considerations for safety
o Home Maintenance
o New houses – setbacks, features, massing
o Neighborhood Commercial – landscaping, lighting and buffering
o List of City services and possible aid agencies

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Luminaria, Christmas Lights, and Important News :)

Hola, Vecinos!

First, some very important news -- the Santa Barbara/Martineztown Neighborhood Association has officially received 501(c)3 status!  This is very important and very welcome news -- going forward, any gifts to SBMTNA may be listed as a charitable donation, but even more importantly, SBMTNA is now eligible to apply for a variety of grants which will benefit our community!

Secondly,  the SBMTNA is continuing to work to ensure that the historic character of our community is preserved.  SBMTNA representatives are attending a variety of meetings on this topic, and are working closely with the city to ensure that our "village within a city" remains just that.  We encourage everyone to attend the monthly meeting to get the latest news and ask questions.

Thirdly, the SBMTNA website will soon have a brand-new look!  We're migrating to a new platform which we hope will be an even better resource for our community going forward.  The new site will debut around the end of the year.  We'll have the same address (

Last, but not least, a very big thank-you to everyone who participated in our 2016 Luminaria display.  The neighborhood really turned out to help fold and fill luminarias, and were rewarded at the end with some of Jeannie Romero's delicious posole and other treats contributed by the community.  Pictures of the luminarias and the SBMT Christmas lights are included below.

We hope everyone had a fun, safe and blessed holiday, and we wish you all the happiest in the New Year.

Friday, December 2, 2016

SB/MT Character Protection Overlay

Character Protection Overlay

We all love our Santa Barbara/Martineztown neighborhood and community for its multitude of unique characteristics. Whether it is for our residential appeal, narrow streets, ability to put a second home on your lot (mother-in -law), from home, to small and larger businesses, we have it all! 
Another key component of our community is our conflict regarding the discrepancy between land use and zoning code. This is primarily of concern in the south end where residential and commercial uses are mixed in a commercially zoned area. Today’s zoning has been in place for over 60 years and our community has had many opportunities to change it, but didn’t/couldn’t.  We have a mix of residents who want residential-only zoning and others that want mixed-use (i.e. for a small/medium business).  This Neighborhood Association is in support of each property owner’s valid and legal right to do what zoning allows them to do with their property.
To make a massive/global zone change, without prior owner approval, is not a position SBMTNA supports.  We will however help individual property owners down grade their mixed-use zone code to R1 if they so choose.
In line with so many of our residents, we love the character and nature of our neighborhood and thus are actively working on protecting the character of our community.  To do this there are a few options. 
One is achieving Historic District certification as the pre-requisite to submitting a Historic Overlay with a global zoning code downgrade to R1. After much work, both have been tried and failed.
The second is a Character Protection Overlay (CPO), with no zoning code change, to be included in the Zoning Code which is currently being developed.
This document would specify enforceable guidelines for the:  
·       styles of buildings that can be built
·       colors and types of materials to be used
·       look and materials of fencing and walls
·       recommended height of buildings, and
·       setback for additional floors.
By implementing these guidelines we can ensure that the character of our community is preserved and built upon, thus creating a harmony in designs, colors and styles that is consistent with and supportive of the history and culture of our historical and culturally-rich neighborhood.
The SBMTNA has completed its first draft of this document and it is ready for your input.  It is too large to include in our mailing so please click here to read it and provide us with your feedback, questions, and concerns.
To give feedback or request a hard copy:
·       Use our Contact form on the website
·       Email to
·       Request your hard copy at the email above or call 505-620-3100

Thank you in advance for your involvement and feedback.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hola Vecinos -

We have a lot of exciting plans for the coming year.  In addition to the upcoming Luminarias (we will announce details for this soon), we've got many other events planned.  These include summer dances in the park, a pig roast, back to school supplies, and book fairs.

Very soon you'll see pocket libraries going up in the neighborhood.  The concept behind these are simple -- take a book, leave a book.  We'll be posting the locations shortly, and we encourage all of you to use these.

We're continuing to work with APD to make our neighborhood as safe as possible.  To that end, we'll be posting some holiday safety tips, and reminding all of you to contact the police if you see something.  APD relies on the community to let them know when there are problems, so they can allocate resources.  For non-emergencies, call (505) 242-COPS or (505) 242-2677.  For emergencies, dial 911.

Finally, we here at SBMTNA wish all of you a happy and safe Thanksgiving Holiday!

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

SBMTNA Monthly Meeting

Hola Vecinos!

As a reminder, the SBMTNA Monthly Meeting will be held on this Thursday, November 17 from 6 PM to 8 PM at 1420 Edith NE. All are welcome and encouraged to attend! There will be free pizza and a 50/50 raffle, so come on by and let your voice be heard!