Thursday, March 14, 2013

Spur 1966 Project Design to Include UTEP Architectural Style, El Paso Themes

The project to extend Schuster Avenue over Interstate 10 near the University of Texas at El Paso will include aesthetic elements that reflect the school's architecture as well as themes familiar to residents. The extension, called Spur 1966 in homage to the national champion UTEP basketball team, then called Texas Western College, will realign Schuster and connect it to Paisano Drive to the west.

Future Schuster Ave/Paisano Drive intersection, looking east.
Two different sections of the project will include clear aesthetic elements. The first, the pedestrian walkway underneath a proposed roundabout, will have color and architectural elements reflective of the University itself. Bhutanese style columns and embellishments will surround passersby as they travel to and from the adjacent parking lots.

Planned aesthetic improvements to pedestrian underpass at the roundabout.
The second section that will include aesthetic upgrades will be a segment of Paisano Drive north of the future Schuster intersection, at the point where the road transitions from surface level to bridge. A mural of sorts will decorate the concrete wall that supports the road above for several feet. Themes in the concept image include cowboys, mountains, yucca plants, the Rio Grande River, and missions.

Proposed decorative elements along a concrete wall on Paisano Drive.
Construction on the Spur 1966 project could start in spring of 2013 and be completed by fall of 2014. The Texas Department of Transportation hopes to have the environmental assessment ready by summer's end.

Schuster Extension May Include Pedestrian Underpass, Roundabout
UTEP Plan Shows Schuster Realignment

Spur 1966 Design Summary (PDF):
TxDOT Project Page: