4 thoughts on “‘Dramatic’ Changes Proposed for Alamo Plaza

  1. Does anyone managing San Antonio planning have a brain when it comes to traffic? The city has already closed off Main Street as a north/south artery. That leaves only 3 north/south arteries downtown–Alamo Street, St. Marys/Navarro, and Flores–to connect the south side of the city with the north side. Cutting off Alamo would leave only two. If they want to make Alamo Plaza glorious without hurting the city, they need to plan for a multi-million dollar Alamo Street tunnel to go under it all!!!

  2. I think the proposal to close Alamo Street (and parts of Crockett) to traffic – car and bus – from at least Commerce to Houston is one of the best elements of the new plan. It is consistent with preservation aims as well as a past study of Alamo Plaza by Project for Public Spaces or PPS (July 2012 – ‘Second to None: Finding Alamo Plaza’s Place in the City’).

    Far from ‘dramatic’, some of the key recommendations coming out of current draft planning (including moving the 1936 Cenotaph and pedestrianizing Alamo Plaza) were offered by PPS well over four years ago, – n a document that was made public by the City as part of a recent RFQ: https://webapps.sanantonio.gov/bidlistingsnew/uploads/RFQ_2534_201504151115460.pdf

    The article above highlights some of the deterioration being witnessed at the Alamo and suggests the obvious – that at least some deterioration can be linked with heavy traffic on Alamo Street.

    This includes the recent introduction of 40-foot VivaVIA buses to the plaza that run frequently and use the Alamo as one of the only transfer points between all four lines: http://viainfo.net/BusService/VivaMain.aspx

    VivaVIA seems to be struggling to attract riders since its launch this summer, and the problem seems to be routing – missing connections with Travis Park, Main Plaza, Centro Plaza and the new HEB downtown as well as potentially endangering the Alamo.

    Any traffic-related damage to the Alamo since the PPS recommendations in July 2012 is on the City. Alamo Street – already one-way except for VIA buses between Houston and Commerce – should be closed immediately to car and bus traffic per past studies and the latest recommendations, and to allow visitors and locals to enjoy this district without concerns about car and bus traffic.

    Related, VIA should honor recent studies and recommendations as well as concerns about traffic-related damage to the Alamo by re-routing all four VivaVIA services immediately – including to improve services for current bus riders and to popular destinations like Travis Park, Main Plaza, Market Square and the new HEB downtown. Minor changes to existing VivaVIA routes could also help serve new hotels, housing and offerings orientated to Frio Street, North Flores/Five Points, South Alamo Street and Probandt where VIA bus services are currently weak.

  3. They better get this new “entertainment district” going first or very quickly along side this project to get a lot of the public on board. Yes we all love the Alamo and want to see it preserved but other than the Riverwalk this is basically the epicenter of entertainment in SA.

    Most of downtown San Antonio is “boring” enough as it is, taking away the primary area that registers as fun and social is a hard pill to swallow without another area that caters to everyone looking to venture downtown and find entertainment, food, shopping, etc.

    Just because the Riverwalk is amazing doesn’t mean the majority of the rest of downtown has to be so bleh. There are other areas that offer some incentive like the market etc but let’s be honest they are old and run down and not up to par with modern expectations outside of the little remaining historical charm.

  4. Pretty much every idea is terrible. Just cut out the heart of the city and wreck its traffic a little more by shutting off a street.
    Gettysburg etc are not valid comparisons…they are not in the center of a city. These people want to kill the city to make the space “sacred?”
    No. Being part of a vibrant, active city makes it more sacred.
    Throw this plan in the garbage, fire this design group, and hire some people who actually live here.

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