Dear Santa Fe City Council, residents and business owners: I am sad to write this, but after so many years of visiting in the summers (I’m a teacher), I can’t help but wonder if you are aware of how a visitor sees the state of your community. It pains me to tell you that your town has lost its sparkle.
I found Santa Fe dirty and tired this summer. Your sidewalks are dirty, as are the storefronts and restaurants. Your parking structures are dirty and smelly. I think you need to rally your business owners and clean things up; get the hoses out and wash those streets, storefronts and sidewalks. I saw that you are working on eradicating gang graffiti. Thank you. That is a good beginning.
I felt unsafe walking around your downtown area with all the homeless and loitering young men. I saw no police to control the racing cars around the square and the drunks and/or druggies. If you want to continue to accept our money, I would pass an ordinance to remove rowdy behavior. All these young men that become obnoxious can do community service and help clean your town.
I think the change you made with the parking meters is one more way to make visitors not welcome. What if my battery on my phone is dead or I left my phone at the hotel, etc.? Parking for visitors is a nightmare. It makes visitors feel you don’t want us there. I think parking should be free to make your visitors feel like you want us there. We spend a lot of money on your stores, restaurants and events. I imagine we are a big part of your economy.
I noticed you are running out of water. Every business and restaurant should install a low-water toilet and/or at the very least, bold, bright signs in all bathrooms and everywhere stating there is a drought/water shortage so we visitors can help.
Thanks for listening. I hope this will inspire you to take some action.