We’re learning the first results of that historical survey of Downtown El Paso. back in February, county commissioners approved $140,000 for that survey.
It basically reiterates what proponents of preserving Duranguito from demolition have been saying all along: that the neighborhood carries history so significant that must not be demolished.
Duranguito, of course, is the controversial site of the potential downtown arena project. County Commissioner David Stout presented the findings Wednesday.
The most significant… That the four-block portion of duranguito is eligible for the national register of historic places. This includes the Trost Firehouses, the Chinese Landromat, the Mansion House Brothel, and four Victorian homes.
Commissioner David Stout saying,”This historic overlay would not create any regulations or prohibit anybody from doing anything to their property that they want to.”
In response to the survey, City Attorney Silvia Firth issued this statement:
“The city should reserve comment about the county historical survey until we have been provided with a copy and had an opportunity to review it. It is my understanding the current report is very preliminary and subject to modifications once more in-depth fact finding takes place.”
In February of 2016, the El Paso County Commissioners Court approved the expenditure of $140,000 to undertake a historic architectural survey in the areas of Downtown, Segundo Barrio and Chihuahuita. In April, after a unanimous vote, the project was awarded to the historic preservation consulting company, Hardy-Heck-Moore, Inc.
As part of the agreement with Hardy-Heck-Moore, the County of El Paso requested a preliminary report on the historical significance of the assets in the Duranguito neighborhood.
It’s unclear what effect this report will have on the downtown arena project. Commissioner Stout expects the the survey to be complete by the end if he year.