EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) – El Paso City Council will discuss the Downtown arena project at its meeting Tuesday, Jan. 3 and examine the use of the remaining funds for the project to build a multi-use arena neighborhood of Duranguito.
Now a feasibility and programming study has been released by the city.
There are three proposed models for that area. The first is an arena project with a 12,000 seat capacity that would cost $386 million, a flexible hybrid venue with a 8,000 seat capacity split in half for both outdoor and indoor that would cost $113 million and finally a second hybrid venue that would have 6,500 indoor seating and 1,500 outdoor.
Throughout all three plans, there is a $30 million dollar budget designated for the historic renovation costs.
However, Veronica Carbajal, an attorney with Texas RioGrande Legal Aid who represents one of the residents of the Duranguito neighborhood, still believes that despite the city acknowledging the status of the historic buildings there, the study is still flawed.
According to Carbajal, the study still does not consider other locations in El Paso that could also be profitable. She says that if the pre-exisitng neighborhood kept its important elements, it would improve the quality of life which is what the current residents of the neighborhood want.
Carbajal also said that the city needs to look at past projects like the Downtown ballpark that was supposed to boost business in the area. She believes it has not turned out as expected and one major issue continues to be ignored.
“You know in that area when there’s a baseball game and something else going on, it finds it very difficult to find parking and so parking doesn’t seem to be addressed in the feasibility study and I think that is an error from the studies that were done over 10 years ago and that it’s still the elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about,” she said.
Carbajal does suggests that the city could use the remaining funds to explore ways to improve the El Paso Convention Center as an alternative.
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