West Old Town/Old Duranes: The area to the west of Old Town Plaza, sandwiched between Rio Grande Blvd and the river, was once, prior to the construction of Interstate 40, part of a sprawling old village community called “Los Duranes” Los Duranes was a small farming community founded by the Duran family (c. 1750) along El Camino Real, the royal road from Chihuahua to Santa Fe. An official Spanish census in 1790 listed the Plaza de Senor San Jose de los Duranes, with 27 families, as one of six defined settlements north of Villa de Albuquerque de San Felipe, along with Los Candelarias, Los Griegos, Los Gallegos, Los Ranchos and Alameda. Drains and irrigation ditches (acequias) of the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District form a network of informal pathways and an oasis in the desert throughout the valley adjacent to the Rio Grande. The early flooding that occurred in this area before the levees were built took away much of the historic architecture. A few of the early farm houses remain, some crumbling, some well preserved. The original community reached both north and south of where we now have I-40; the freeway was built almost through its center. In the process, houses were demolished, farm lands torn up and the neighborhood cut in two. And yet, if you explore this part of town, you will find that a small and precious amount of agriculture still manages to survive here, in the shadow of Downtown.
This site is still under development, More neighborhood information coming soon