Fort Worth Council OKs new arena, distillery, Stockyards development

Convention Center Arena

Credit: WFAA

Fort Worth's downtown Convention Center Arena opened in 1968 and has a capacity of more than 17,000.

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by JOBIN PANICKER

Bio | Email | Follow: @jobinpnews

WFAA

Posted on July 15, 2014 at 10:57 PM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 16 at 1:33 AM

FORT WORTH — It was a night of big decisions in Fort Worth Tuesday as the City Council took the first step toward replacing the aging Convention Center Arena with a new facility next to the Will Rogers Memorial Center.

The building would host concerts, sporting events and conventions, but the funding must be still approved by voters. That election could happen anytime before 2018.

Council members also voted 7-2 in favor of a plan to turn the historic Glen Garden Golf Course into a whiskey distillery. Neighbors had collected 11,000 petition signatures to block the project.

The city had to approve re-zoning for the plan to move forward.

And then late Tuesday night, in an 8-1 vote, the Council moved ahead with zoning changes for the historic Stockyards, WFAA media partner the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported.  That vote was in spite of a large and vocal crowd urging members to take their time deciding the fate of the proposed $175 million development by the Hickman family and Majestic Realty Co. of California.

“It is clear that Fort Worth cares deeply about the Stockyards. The Stockyards is Fort Worth,” said Councilman Sal Espino, who represents the area and made the motion to approve the zoning change, with the understanding that the city would create a form-based code and conduct a traffic study.

“At the end of the day, I am confident that by working together we will preserve the Western heritage, the beauty of the Stockyards that makes Fort Worth so special,” Espino said.

E-mail jpanicker@wfaa.com

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