Thursday, April 5, 2012

City Begins Downtown Street Beautification Process

The City has submitted an application to the Historic Landmark Commission (HLC) for right of way improvements to and beautification of San Antonio Avenue in Downtown El Paso. The area of focus is between El Paso and Stanton Streets.
Improvements could include:

• Sidewalks should be enhanced by installing brick pavers (or other decorative materials) along the edges and/or intersections.
• Existing planting boxes should be removed. Instead trees with tree grates should be installed.
• All sidewalks should have handicap accessibility.
• Trees should have tree grates and vertical tree guards similar to those at Pioneer Plaza.
• Street furniture should be consistent with the character of the historic landmarks within the district.
• Street furniture should be selected, place and maintained as part of the overall design scheme.
The City must first go through the HLC because the street is located in a historic district, and any improvement to the right away must adhere to relatively strict design guidelines. The goal of the guidelines is to ensure that any change in appearance will be sensitive to the historic nature of the surrounding buildings.
The city would also like to make the street a two-way thoroughfare to improve circulation in the city's core. The project is part of the City's overall goal to improve walkability and wayfinding within Downtown. City Council will vote on April 9 to award the contract for improvements to J.A.R. Concrete, who will have 210 days to complete the project from when work begins.

Historic Landmark Commission Item: http://www.elpasotexas.gov/development_services/meetings/hlc0326121600/PHAP12-00005%20San%20Antonio%20St.pdf
City Council Agenda: http://www.elpasotexas.gov/muni_clerk/agenda/04-10-12/04101212.pdf

2 comments:

  1. Has anything been said about making the street more narrow or the sidewalks wider?

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  2. It is possible that the City would want the sidewalks to be wider, considering that they voted to make San Antonio a two-way street, which would mean one lane in each direction. However, it's difficult to tell from the plan.

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