Relocated El Paso City Hall could create business boom

El Paso, Tx - On Tuesday, El Paso City Council approved the purchase of two buildings to relocate City Hall. The El Paso Times building will be purchased with an $11 million price tag and the old Union Manufacturing building for $2.3 million.

So what will that do to the businesses near those buildings?

There's a lot of buzz about all of the potential movement going on in downtown. Word of the the El Paso Times building making way for city employees could mean some extra cash in the register for some restaurants and bars, located in a part of downtown some people have called a "forgotten area."

"There's been obstacles in the way. Its been much of a task," said bar owner Joe Hernandez.

Opening up a new bar and soon- to- be restaurant, The Network, in downtown El Paso hasn't come easy for Hernandez, but he pushes through.

"It's a business but you have to figure out ways to make it grow," said Hernandez.

With the city's recent approval to buy the El Paso Times building, only a short walk from The Network, business could soon be good.

Hernandez told ABC-7,"If City Hall moves to that sight, it could (mean) customers... to come and enjoy our "restaurant."

When ABC-7 asked him why he chose that location, Hernandez said, "the energy in this building set it off."

The Network bar co-owner Frank Montes told ABC-7 they will have a lot of options for a possible spike in their clientele.

"I'm exited, you know, the more the merrier. It's going to be a one-stop-shop type of a place, (where) you can grab a coffe, you can grab a lunch, you can have a cocktail at the same time, or you can just (hook up your) Wi-Fi," said Montes. 

Montes told ABC-7 the recent changes in downtown are looking better, they're even looking to expand to a new section of the building.

"It's another phase that we're going to move into and that's going to be our coffe shop part of it. You can grab you're breakfast burrito in the morning. If you're on the go, grab your cup of joe. We will be able to offer that," said Montes.

Restaurant owners and mangers haven't disregarded the fact a new stadium will be bringing more traffic into downtown, just one more area being touched by the potential redevelopment of downtown.

"I just want to grow with El Paso. I want to be part of El Paso because I think we're being surrounded by a lot of great possibilities," said Montes.

Not all business owners are jumping on the bandwagon though. An employee of another restaurant down the street told ABC-7, they expected a big boom in business when the Federal Courthouse was built. They saw a spike in sales during construction but after that, sales went back to normal when the construction worker left.


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