San Pedro Creek project takes another step forward

Project uses vital piece of city's past to ensure bright future

SAN ANTONIO – Bexar County Commissioners have approved nearly half of the designs for the $175 million San Pedro Creek project.

The vote pushes the bold transformation effort forward as the county and city work together to return the once vital waterway to its past glory.

"(San Antonio) really grew up first around the creek before the river, so it has a great history," said Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff.

The county has allocated about $125 million to the project. Wolff hopes the rest of the funding will come from a mixture of public dollars and private donations.

The transformation would take place along the creek from Fox Tech High School to Cesar Chavez. The plan calls for the construction of a new amphitheater, foot and bike paths, and other amenities for tourists and residents to take advantage of.

"You're going to see housing. You're going to see some retail, office space, and some hotels along the creek," Wolff said.

San Antonio city staff will recommend that the City Council vote in favor of donating city-owned property to the San Antonio River Authority, which is leading the design process, for the project. SARA is working with other downtown organizations and the public to further develop the project.

"This is an opportunity to infill, develop (and) create another place for all of San Antonians to enjoy and to see economic prosperity along this particular corridor in our downtown and even surrounding neighborhoods," said Centro San Antonio President and CEO Pat DiGiovanni. "This has the opportunity to really change the west end of our downtown and really be more of a locals gathering place and a revitalization area of our city."

Officials hope to have the first phase of the project complete by May 2018, just in time for the city's 300th birthday.