Belen, New Mexico

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Belen (pronounced /bəˈlɪn/) (Spanish: Belén) is a city in Valencia County, New Mexico, United States. Belen is Spanish for Bethlehem and over time has gained the nickname "Hub City" because of the Belen Cutoff of the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway. The Cutoff made it possible for many more trains to traverse east and west across the United States. Prior to the Belen Cutoff train traffic came through the steep Raton Pass on the Colorado and New Mexico border. To this day, an average of 110 trains travel through Belen in a 24-hour period on the Southern Transcon. Belen also has the only Harvey House Museum in the state of New Mexico. The population was 6,901 at the 2000 census.

Belen is part of the Albuquerque Metropolitan Statistical Area.



Belen is located at 34°39′56″N 106°46′34″W / 34.66556°N 106.77611°W / 34.66556; -106.77611 (34.665587, -106.776225)[1].

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 4.7 square miles (12.2 km²).


As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 6,901 people, 2,596 households, and 1,778 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,463.1 people per square mile (564.5/km²). There were 2,952 housing units at an average density of 625.9/sq mi (241.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 67.50% White, 1.07% African American, 1.65% Native American, 0.17% Asian, 0.16% Pacific Islander, 25.39% from other races, and 4.06% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 68.61% of the population.

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