The Plan El Paso team will give a Work-in-Progress presentation tomorrow evening, Wednesday, June 30, at the El Paso Main Public Library Auditorium, 501 N. Oregon. The Dover Kohl assembly of consultants will present all of the draft concepts, plans, renderings and preliminary regulating plans (zoning maps) for the ASARCO and transit sites.
"I can assure you that there will be a lot of very valuable information and its's really important that we get a good turn out so that we can get feedback from the attendees. We want to make sure we are on the right track before we return home to refine the plans."
"It was a wonderful experience to sit with folks from the neighborhood to dream and plan for the future of Five Points. There's so much potential, and the ideas were so great, that I hope the City and the private sector can help make it happen."
Making it happen is my concern. I had the opportunity to visit with 3 members of the team this past Sunday while we hiked together in the Franklin Mountains State Park. I shared my primary concern: You can do all these great designs that conserve natural space, contribute to walkability, etc., but if a developer comes along and wants to do things the old way, what can be done especially in the State of Texas that has such strong private property laws?
The answer in a nutshell is that the designs will serve not only as examples of how to do something better, but they will be a vision that can long guide us. Dover Kohl City Planner, Pam Stacy, pointed out that El Paso's dreams for urban park development began with the vision of the 1925 City Plan for El Paso. The team that Dover Kohl has put together includes economists, city planners, people who know issues regarding zoning and much more.
Frankly, if just a portion of the dreams that are now taking shape are realized, the City will be so much the better.
Texas Wildlife Urban Biologist for El Paso, Lois Balin, has been sharing a similar dream. Here is her presentation on conservation development:
Balin Conservation Development Design