Goals for more Downtown Revitalization Continue through New Year

LUBBOCK, TX - City leaders say downtown revitalization has been in the works for years, but that plans really came into fruition over the course of 2016 as more businesses began to pop up in the area.

"The new age of urbanism is upon us, and that's taken some of the old and some of the new in downtown revitalization," said Lubbock city District 3 councilman, Jeff Griffith. 

The ongoing project is also something that local long-time business owners say they're happy to be apart of. 

"It's been amazing, ever since we've moved in we've just seen an increase in traffic and it's hard to find parking down here now," said Bart Reagor, owning partner and CEO of the Reagor Dykes Auto Group. Ever since the company moved into the green building to form its new headquarters, local restaurants, businesses and organizations have also been able to move in. 

"For Lubbock and Texas Tech to reach it's full potential, downtown redevelopment has got to happen, it's a done deal," said Reagor. "If we want to be competitive with all the other cities which we should be we have to have that to offer, and we've come along away, but we still have a long ways to go, and it's going to be awesome," 

While over the course of the past year several new spots did move downtown, it's still hard to ignore the empty buildings along Broadway. 

"Some of those old buildings, some are not worth preserving some are," said councilman Griffith. "Look at down towns all over the United States, it's been redeveloped. There's always a combination of old and new structures. So utilization of old buildings, plus right beside it, possibly something very new and sparkly." 

Griffith also shared he and fellow council members are hopeful that the $48 million revitalization of the Citizens Tower will bring more businesses and groups to downtown. The building is anticipated to be the new home of City Hall come December of 2018.
"All great cities have a downtown, it's what they're known for. We're vertically challenged in Lubbock, I'll be the first to admit it. We don't have tall skyscrapers, so this [Citizens Tower] it's one we didn't want to take down, and with the right dollars and it's not too expensive a project so it makes sense." 

Griffith also said a vital piece of redeveloping Lubbock is its proximity to Texas Tech University and the university's growth.

"Remember that Texas Tech is only one mile away, exactly one mile away. The proximity, the closeness to Texas Tech is a big advantage in our revitalization efforts." 
Griffith acknowledges that while some changes may seem to have taken longer than others, that revitalization efforts remain strong and ongoing through 2017. One particular addition he says for folks to expect in the new year, are more hotels. 
"This is a - not just a revolution it's an evolution of our downtown and that's what people have to understand, that it's going to take the right entities and we wish we could snap our finger and have it happen rapidly, but we know that it's - in better plans aren't done quickly they're done long term."

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