SAN ANTONIO - A group is hoping to breathe new life into the near-downtown area.
The McCullough Avenue Consortium was created in April 2017. Its goal is to revitalize the businesses, organizations and churches along McCullough Avenue, including the surrounding areas.
The consortium, which was founded by Christian Assistance Ministry, is made up of several businesses and organizations, including CPS Energy, Metropolitan Methodist Hospital, First Baptist Church and Grace Lutheran Church. These members have been discussing the best way to transform this area to make it a vibrant destination, not only for residents but also tourists.
“How can we help CAM? How can we make this an area that people might want to move to and they can give where they live?" said Dawn Fosdick, executive director of Christian Assistance Ministry. “Often communities just get developed. Nobody plans it together."
There are a lot of improvements already underway on McCullough Avenue.
“The cool things is when we talk to the city, we're able to share, 'Look, we’ve got these plans.' But we're investing. We're not just going to the city complaining or asking for things," Fosdick said.
CPS Energy first announced its big move for its headquarters to the area in 2016. The company is renovating the old AT&T building located on McCullough Avenue and Avenue B. It’s expected to be completed next year.
The historic Light Buildings are also being renovated into a mixed-use office and retail complex.
"What they want to do is improve the streets, lighting, artwork, some landscaping, but in the big scheme of things, I think it will be a plus. Any upgrade would be a benefit for our city," said Guillermo Garza, owner of Guillermo's restaurant, which is located on McCullough Avenue.
The majority of the McCullough Avenue area falls in District 1, which is Councilman Roberto Trevino's district. His office has been heavily involved with the consortium and guiding the group on the steps it must take in order to make this effort a reality.
The McCullough Avenue Consortium is hosting a community design charrette on April 7 from 8 a.m. to noon at First Presbyterian Church. This is a chance for the public to have a say in how they would like the area to be transformed. A group of architects will then compile the data. The results should be released in June.
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