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City of Edinburg
415 W. University Drive
Edinburg, TX. 78541
Phone: 956 - 388 - 8204
Fax: 956 - 338 - 7111
City News Archives
April 25, 2014
EDINBURG, Texas — The public celebrated the official opening of the McIntyre Street Project on Friday; the beginning of a proposed arts and restaurant district extending through the heart of Edinburg. The road has been transformed into one of the most unique public spaces in the Rio Grande Valley. The half mile-long, or six city blocks, of green pedestrian walkway space is one phase in a greater plan, Mayor Richard H. Garcia said.
"We have changed the face of this town," Garcia said. "We're not stopping here. You will not recognize the City of Edinburg from 15 or 20 years ago when we're done."
The City-owned land surrounding the new McIntyre Street Project gazebo, at the intersection of McIntyre Street and Sixth Avenue, is slated to become a residential complex for University of Texas-Pan American students and a Valley Metro transit hub, respectively.
The new path connects the UTPA Academic Performing Arts Center, currently under construction, to the City government complex and the seat of Hidalgo County government.
"Not too many cities in the State of Texas are fortunate enough to have all of this in one town. We are and we took advantage of that," the mayor said.
Garcia explained the first phase of transforming downtown Edinburg was the creation of a new City Hall and the second phase is McIntyre Street Project. He said a third phase targeting Edinburg Town Square will follow and a fourth phase will focus on the area in eastern Edinburg extending to the bike paths near university Drive, also known as State Highway 107.
Garcia emphasized the crucial role partnership has played in such projects. A UTPA representative spoke about continuing growth of the university's relationship with the City. Ken Jones, Lower Rio Grande Valley Development Council executive director, said the project has helped transform Edinburg. The LRGVDC helped secure a $1.8 million federal transit grant for McIntyre Street Project.
"The City Council has set the bar for other cities in the Valley to reach," Jones said of the project.
Eventually, the McIntyre Street Project is expected to host events every weekend. The first event was a celebration of Earth Day, Arbor Day, National Community Development Block Grant week and U.S. Passport Day on April 26. Every second Friday of the month, April through November, catch the Jardin Del Arte event " a festival of art, music and family on the new promenade.
In all, the City used a $1.8 million federal transit grant and spent $1.5 million of its own money on McIntyre Street Project. The mayor said emphasis was placed on making a green space; encouraging walking and biking while planting native trees and flowers.
Public bathrooms, new plumbing and drainage infrastructure, power lines and a dressing room for the nearby Municipal Auditorium were added. A once blighted area, the remaining private property is expected to increase in value, a boon for owners who might sell to developers attracted to the location because of the project.
Edinburg is slated to become a destination City as it capitalizes on each of its successful projects like McIntyre Street Project as well as a brand new arena expected to have billions in positive impact.
"This is about Edinburg," Mayor Garcia said. "It's not about me; it's not about the City Council having done all of this. It's a team effort. Everybody that's with the City is amazing."