El Paso, Texas (KTSM) — On Saturday, the city of El Paso celebrated the completion of the Valle Bajo Community Center and Library with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.
In addition to the ribbon cutting, the celebration included a basketball-dribbling exhibition, reading activities, family-fun programs and a free COVID-19 Vaccine Pop-up clinic.
The new facility, near the intersection of Alameda Avenue and Carolina Drive in the Lower Valley, is part of a $33 million project to construct three community centers. The center showcases a multi-purpose room, kitchen, weightlifting and exercise room, a game room and an award-winning public art sculpture hanging at the entrance of the facility. The gym is full service and at a low cost for area residents.
“We recognize that our youth and our elderly were left behind in the Lower Valley so this was one of the reasons why the community center was thought of,” said District 3 Rep. Cassandra Hernandez, adding that residents in the area can enjoy recreational amenities without having to drive north of the freeway or other parts of the city.
Outside the center are a flat field for soccer, a futsal court, a playground and additional parking. The facility also features a full-service library that pays tribute to the late Enrique Moreno, an attorney and civil rights advocate. The gymnasium honors Steve Yellen, a community leader and former University of Texas at El Paso basketball player, who has championed for unity and peace through basketball and sports.