Santa Fe mayor proposes closing historic plaza to vehicles; some merchants express concerns

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SANTE FE, N.M. - Santa Fe's newly elected mayor is proposing that the northern New Mexico city close its historic downtown plaza to vehicles.

Mayor Javier Gonzales formally introduced his proposal during a City Council meeting Wednesday, saying he wants to create an environment where families with children can feel they can move around the plaza safely.

The Santa Fe New Mexican ( ) reports that several downtown merchants attended the meeting to express concerns about Gonzales' idea.

Tour operator Frank Montano says cruising the plaza is a time-honoured tradition for Santa Fe residents, and jewelry store manager Craig Allen said closing off all streets around the plaza would hurt merchants by reducing traffic flow.

Gonzales' proposal would close three streets adjoining the plaza park. A fourth is already closed.

Gonzales took office last month.

Organizations: Santa Fe New Mexican

Geographic location: Santa Fe, SANTE FE, New Mexico

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