City can move forward with multipurpose facility following agreement with opponent

Area slated for Downtown Arena (Source: KFOX14)

The city can continue to move forward with building the Multipurpose Performing Arts and Entertainment Center.

A court hearing was canceled after city officials say Max Grossman, El Paso historian and opponent of the project, entered an agreement with the city.

According to the agreement, the city no longer has to provide a 14-day notice prior to demolition of a building within the MPC footprint; the city no longer has to pay attorney fees, as it was agreed that it is not in violation of the Texas Antiquities Code; and city officials are no longer prohibited from demolishing buildings or issuing demolition permits, city officials said on Thursday.

Earlier this week, a second lawsuit filed by Grossman was denied, and in that case, the city affirmed that demolition for the MPC would not begin before Nov. 19.

In a written response, Grossman said ther is still a temporary injunction that will be heard in Austin on the week of Nov. 12 in which he hopes to stop the demolition of the buildings before the archaeological study of the area begins.

Grossman says he learned through the Texas Historical Commission that there was a plan to demolish buildings for the study.

See Grossman's full statement:

The archaeological investigation of the MPC footprint will be done in four phases: archival and historical research, ground-penetrating radar survey, mechanical survey and an additional investigation state.

Moore Archeological Consulting Inc. will be in charge of performing the archaeological and historical review of the properties.

It’s been a year since partial demolition began of some of the buildings in the Union Plaza area before a series of legal battles began to stop construction.

The project was put on the ballot in 2012, specifying it would be built in downtown El Paso, and it was approved by voters.

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