Thursday, June 9, 2016

New Westside Tower Stirs Up Opposing Views

By Armando Landin

Supporters of a proposed 22-story tower in West El Paso have set up a Facebook page and online petition that urges City Council to approve the ambitious project unveiled in April.

Shadow Mountain Tower would rise 22-stories in West El Paso, as seen in this rendering. City Council will consider approving the project in the coming weeks. (Meyers Group)

Meanwhile, opponents have also setup an online petition calling for the City to deny the required zoning change for the project unless the height of the tower is lowered or it is moved to Downtown El Paso.

One of the developers behind the project, Josh Meyers of Meyers Group of Florida, met with both sides at a community meeting held by City Representative Peter Svarzbein on Wednesday. Mr. Meyers heads Meyers Group's El Paso office and lives in the same area as the proposed tower.

The supportive Facebook page is called "Rise El Paso" with the corresponding online petition stating:

"This innovative mixed use building will give our citizens a place to live, work, and play. Let’s take actions that promote the economic vitality of our beloved city and improve our quality of life. The building will be LEED certified and is designed to blend in with the colors and hues of our natural environment. It does not effect views of our beautiful mountain range. We should foster an environment that encourages entrepreneurs and development. Encouraging investment encourages economic growth which increases the employment rate and increases average income."

Another view of the proposed Shadow Mountain tower in West El Paso. (Meyers Group)

Meanwhile, the petition set up in opposition is called "Fight the High-Rise" and states:

"Luxury apartments and a hotel near the #1 rated ballpark, beautiful San Jacinto Plaza, and the arts district —that's progress. The city has spent millions revamping downtown, bettering the quality of life for El Pasoans and adding value to El Paso. A high rise in a residential neighborhood (a suburb in every other city in the country) will be giant step backward."

As of this writing, the supportive petition has 669 signatures while the petition in opposition of the project has 336.

Petition in support: Support the Shadow Mountain Mixed-Use Development Project
Petition in opposition: Fight the High-Rise: Keep Our Mountains Tall

The Shadow Mountain project will create a 22-story mixed use tower that includes 228 apartment units, 219 hotel units, and 42,000 square feet of retail space. A five story garage will provide over 700 parking spaces for the development.

The proposed 22-story for West El Paso will be located east of the North Mesa Street and Sunland Park Drive intersection, at 201 Shadow Mountain Drive. 

The tower will be located at 201 Shadow Mountain Drive, just east of the Sunland Park Drive and Mesa Street intersection.

(Previously: 22-Story Mixed-Use Tower Planned for West El Paso)

The rezoning application was unanimously approved by the City Plan Commission in May. It is expected to be considered for final approval by City Council in July.