Tuesday, May 13, 2014

SmartCode Project Requests 12-Month Extension

City to Consider 2nd Amendment to ‘Aldea El Paso’ Agreement

The second massive SmartCode project planned for West El Paso will have 12 more months to begin construction on its 204-acre development, if City Council approves the agenda item at this week’s meeting. This will be the second time the developer requests a one-year extension.
This map shows the several districts that will define the Aldea El Paso SmartCode development. A Walmart store, located in the orange district on this map, will have the largest footprint, followed by the more urban Rambla District to its east. I-10 and the planned frontage roads are at the bottom. (aldeaelpaso.com)

The developer, Geltmore, LLC of Albuquerque, still has not complied with one item out of five required by the Chapter 380 incentives agreement it signed with the City of El Paso in 2011. Geltmore must get Texas Department of Transportation (TXDOT) approval for the Interstate 10 frontage road and interchange that will provide access to the development.

The western portion of Aldea runs adjacent to I-10, and an interchange will be created where the future Mesa Park Boulevard crosses over the freeway. A frontage road will connect Mesa Park to Executive Center Boulevard.
The Rambla District of the Aldea El Paso development will include anchor and street retail as well as multi-family housing. (aldeaelpaso.com)

In July of last year, the effort to make the frontage road/interchange project a reality gained some steam. The Camino Real Regional Mobility Authority (CRRMA) helped develop an agreement between TXDOT, Geltmore, and the City of El Paso to help the project move forward. Walmart Stores, which owns portions of the property and plans to open a location within the development, was also included in the agreement.

And the project was also listed in the 2013 El Paso County Comprehensive Mobility Plan as one of 16 projects slated to start in the coming years. The CRRMA is also helping to oversee the projects listed in that Plan. It lists the $25 million interchange/frontage road project as possibly beginning in late 2014.
Two hotels, pictured to the left of the roundabout, are planned for the project. (aldeaelpaso.com)

Aldea El Paso will be developed to SmartCode standards and will create over one million square feet of retail and entertainment space, 250,000 square feet of office space, and 350 rooms between two hotels. A mix of housing options will make up 1,245 residential  units.

It will have 3,300 feet of I-10 frontage and will connect to the Montecillo SmartCode development immediately to the north, which is already under construction.

If the extension is approved, Geltmore will have until May 2015 to begin construction on the Aldea El Paso project. City Council will consider the item at the May 13, 2014 meeting.