AMARILLO, Texas (KAMR/KCIT) — The City of Amarillo presented a plan that has been years in the making: expansion and renovation of the Amarillo Civic Center in downtown.

Image Courtesy – Conversation: Civic Center

The total cost of the project is expected to be $319 million, with $279 million of that being a bond proposal that will be voted on in May 2020.

“When we are recruiting new businesses from out of town, one of the first things they want to see is downtown,” said Amarillo City Councilmember Elaine Hays.

If passed, what those businesses would see is a brand new arena that will seat over 10,000 people. Which will also help when it comes to high school graduations in the area.

Image Courtesy – Conversation: Civic Center

“The expanded facility would allow us to almost double our capacity and not make families have to make those choices between who can come and who is excluded,” said Councilmember Hays

Also included in the proposal are the expansion of the exhibit hall and ballroom, upgrades to full-service kitchens, modern concessions, and state of the art technology.

“It’s not just we’re improving the quality of life for our current residents, but we are rolling out a red carpet that helps in bring new businesses, new job opportunities, and increase our economic impact for our city,” said Councilmember Hays.

Image Courtesy – Conversation: Civic Center

Another part of the plan is the relocation of city hall, which would allow for more new ideas.

“This would be an opportunity, instead of putting new money into an old facility, to actually remove that facility and open up four acres of green space. Our own Central Park in downtown Amarillo,” said Councilmember Hays.

The city wants to hear from you on this matter as well with four upcoming public forums at the Civic Center Hospitality Room on the following dates and times:

  • September 14 at 8:30 a.m.
  • September 19 at 1 p.m.
  • September 19 at 5:30 p.m.
  • September 21 at 8:30 a.m.

For more information regarding the possible renovations and expansions, click here.