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About Santa Fe

 About Santa Fe

With a population of 70,000, Santa Fe, which means Holy Faith in Spanish, is New Mexico’s fourth largest city. Residents are primarily Hispanic, Anglo and Native American people.

Situated at 7,000 feet in the foothills of the southern Rocky Mountains, Santa Fe is the highest and oldest capital in the U.S. Founded between 1607 and 1610, it’s America’s second oldest city.

In 1912, New Mexico officially achieved statehood. Today, its unique offerings of art, culture and ancient traditions make it a world-class destination, drawing more than 1 million visitors each year.

In 2005, Santa Fe became the first U.S. city to be chosen by UNESCO as a Creative City, one of only nine cities in the world to hold this designation. This creativity is at the heart of the community and is a core value for most local businesses.

History

Over its 400 plus year history, Santa Fe has been a commercial center, a place where goods and services were made and traded. Following sporadic trade with settlements such as French New Orleans and Spanish Texas, the town really opened up in 1821, when the first trading caravans completed the 900 mile journey from Missouri. In 1821 New Spain declared independence from Spain, and the new nation officially sanctioned commerce, exchanging the riches of the Mexican silver mines for cattle and wagon loads of textiles, clothing, buckles, buttons, tools, implements and liquor. The six decades of the Santa Fe Trail cemented Santa Fe’s reputation as the commercial capital at Mexico’s northern border, and following New Mexico’s incorporation as a US State in 1911, Santa Fe became the state capital.

Today Santa Fe is the sum of its powerful history, with many families tracing their roots back several generations, a small-town atmosphere and an international reputation for artistic and architectural sophistication.

Santa Fe’s history may be divided into six periods, 1050 to the present. Click here to learn more.

 

Demographics

For a full list of our City's economic demographic data, click here for the Economic & Innovation Dashboard

This dashboard provides citizens with a prospective set of  indicators to measure different aspects of local economies and understand the impact of policy decisions. Each section above looks at a different aspect of new business development, detailing the most available indicators for measuring success and understanding areas of improvement.

We know that new businesses are labors of love - they take tireless effort, clear vision, and most of all, plenty of time. It can take years to see the impact of changes in policy and investment on entrepreneurial success.  Moreover, the ideal entrepreneurial climate is complex, and our understanding of what drives entrepreneurship continues to evolve. 

That should not stop you from seeing how we view the best indicators of success that we know today and tracking them over time. This dashboard will always remain up-to-date with the latest data available, so make sure to check back periodically. Getting into the routine of assessing data-driven indicators is your first step to understanding how your initiatives impact entrepreneurship in your community.

Climate

Many residents say the climate is so good they could never live anywhere else. With an average of 300 sunny days each year, Santa Fe has four distinct seasons, each enjoyable in its own way.

High in the desert mountains of the southwest Santa Fe boasts low humidity and pleasant warm summer days with refreshingly cool summer nights. Winters are beautiful with snow storms punctuated by sunny days. The colors of fall are bright with blooming chamisa and asters, yellow aspens and sweet, crisp air. In spring, the fruit trees bloom, and daffodils, tulips and forsythia sprout all over town.

With low humidity, it’s always comfortable to walk around town or to hike the trails close by. Average high temperatures go from 44 degrees in January to 86 degrees in July. Lows vary from 15 in January to 54 in June.

Quality of Life

Many residents say the climate is so good they could never live anywhere else. With an average of 300 sunny days each year, Santa Fe has four distinct seasons, each enjoyable in its own way.

High in the desert mountains of the southwest Santa Fe boasts low humidity and pleasant warm summer days with refreshingly cool summer nights. Winters are beautiful with snow storms punctuated by sunny days. The colors of fall are bright with blooming chamisa and asters, yellow aspens and sweet, crisp air. In spring, the fruit trees bloom, and daffodils, tulips and forsythia sprout all over town.

With low humidity, it’s always comfortable to walk around town or to hike the trails close by. Average high temperatures go from 44 degrees in January to 86 degrees in July. Lows vary from 15 in January to 54 in June.

 

Property Taxes

Santa Fe County is separated into four school/tax districts. The school districts are identified as: Moriarty, Santa Fe, Pojoaque, and Espanola. If you live in the Cities of Santa Fe and Espanola, you pay a mill rate to fund municipal operational and debt service of  the  school districts.

All properties in Santa Fe County are taxed at a third of their market value. For example, a single residence assessed at $150,000 has a net taxable value of $50,000. Certain exemptions maybe deducted from the taxable value. Please visit “http://www.santafecounty.org/assessor/appraisal_tax_information for more information

Average property tax for a $150,000 ($50,000 taxable) home $980
Average monthly electricity cost for a 2,000 sq. ft. home $66
Average monthly gas cost for a 2,000 sq. ft home $117.00
Average auto insurance for one car $850
Average one-way commute (City) 16.9 minutes


Education

Elementary Schools

The Santa Fe Public Schools system has a total enrollment of 13,775 students, making it the third largest district in the state.  The district comprises 20 elementary schools, 4 junior high schools, 3 senior high schools and three charter schools. Average teacher salary in the district is $40,512.

In addition to public schools, the city is home to over thirty private schools, from pre-school through 12th grade. Prominent high schools include Santa Fe Preparatory School, St Michael’s High School, Santa Fe Waldorf, Santa Fe Girls School and Desert Academy.

Colleges and Universities

St. John’s College, which has a sister campus in Annapolis MD, has a curriculum based around the “Great Books”. St. John’s College is a co-educational, four year liberal arts college known for its distinctive “great books” curriculum. The course of study is based on the reading, study, and discussion of the most important books of the Western tradition. Students study from the classics of literature, philosophy, theology, psychology, political science, economics, history, mathematics, laboratory sciences, and music. St. John’s College is a community dedicated to liberal education. Such education seeks to free men and women from the tyrannies of unexamined opinions and inherited prejudices.

The Institute of American Indian Arts serves the Native American community across the US, with representation from over 140 different tribes. It offers associates and bachelor’s degree programs. IAIA Museum in downtown Santa Fe is home to the 7,000-piece National Collection of Contemporary Indian Art.

Santa Fe Community College (SFCC) provides the region with affordable high quality education and training and works with companies to develop specialized workforce training and education programs they may require. The Santa Fe office of the New Mexico Small Business Development Centeris also located on the campus.

Courses are presented through a variety of delivery methods and time formats, this includes basic skill programs; certificates and technical degrees; associate degrees with four year transfer potential, and personal enrichment courses both for credit and not for credit.

Each semester SFCC has around 5,400 students enrolled in the various associate degree programs or certificate or professional credential programs.

SFCC is also home to the Sustainable Technology Center which delivers education in sustainability, renewable energies technologies, environmental technologies, and certifications for energy raters. The Center is part of the national Advanced Technology Center network to develop and deliver curriculum in smart grid technology and green building construction.The college is also developing curriculum to add sustainability across all our educational programs including science, math, English, and history.

Southwestern College, devoted to the study of mental health, offers master’s degrees in counseling, counseling with a concentration in grief and loss, and art therapy.

Southwest Acupuncture College offers a Master of Science in Oriental Medicine.

Although not a college per se, the Santa Fe Institute “is devoted to creating a new kind of scientific research community, one emphasizing multi-disciplinary collaboration in pursuit of understanding the common themes that arise in natural, artificial, and social systems.” It has an active campus and faculty, building on its worldwide reputation as the home of complexity science.

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