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MEDC approves $6 million land purchase for development

Mission Economic Development Corporation held a public hearing on the proposed purchase of 19 acres of land valued at $6 million for future development. The site is located just east of Shary Road and fronts Victoria Avenue, which is the street behind the Shary Crossing shopping center where HEB and Target are located.

MEDC CEO Alex Meade said the land is adjacent to the site where the City of Mission is planning to build an events center. The entire site encompasses about 29 acres but only 10 acres are planned to be part of the event center. The land MEDC is purchasing will be used for restaurants, hotels and an extended shopping area to complement the event center, according to Meade.

MEDC logoCity Manager Martin Garza said the City of Mission plans a bond issuance for up to $25 million for the new event center to be built on 10 acres on Shary Road. Authorization for solicitation of bids for the 40,000-square-foot facility will be on the city council agenda Monday, May 23. From solicitation of bids to completion of the project should take at least 18 months, according to Garza.

Plans are for construction of one large building that can be divided into three smaller rooms or used as one large area; it will have seating of about 1,200 people. One of the three larger areas can be divided into six smaller conference rooms that will accommodate about 60 people each for smaller meetings and events. The facility will have a kitchen and a large storage area for chairs and tables.

Garza envisions trade shows, quinceneras, weddings, Winter Texan events, large Chamber of Commerce events, Texas Citrus Fiesta pageants, health fairs and many other uses for the facility. Currently, the largest facility in town is Mario’s Banquet and Conference Center with seating capacity of 700 people. The new event center is planned to accommodate larger groups.

“The Mission Community Center has served the city for many years but it is the only venue the city currently has for city events.” It is currently too small for many city events because of rapid city growth, Garza explained. “While the size will not compete with the larger facility in McAllen, it will accommodate the needs of the City of Mission for years to come.”

Garza stated as MEDC sells parcels of the 19 acres for hotels, restaurants and shopping facilities, the proceeds from the sale will be used to pay on the principal of the event center and will reduce the cost dramatically.

“There will be no new taxes to pay for the planned event center,” emphasized Garza.

In other action, MEDC board held a public hearing on the proposed budget, not to exceed $30,000 per year, for the operation of the new Center for Education and Economic Development (CEED) building now nearing completion on Bryan Road.

MEDC board members heard a financial report for the month of April. The report showed total resources of $3,650,861 and expenditures of $3,324,376. Total assets amounted to $3,410,035 while liabilities and fund balance stood at $3,411,035. Debt service was set at $2,665,013.

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