CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — The future of the abandoned and very old Nueces County Courthouse was up for discussion in the County Commissioners Court on Wednesday. The Texas Historical Commission presented a survey to commissioners on the possibility of turning the aging structure located in downtown Corpus Christi into a high end boutique hotel.
The idea of turning the building into a hotel is not new to the commissioners. In May of last year, the County agreed to sell the building to a developer that planned to transform it into a hotel. The deal was terminated three months later when the developer failed to pay more than $1.5 million dollars in back property taxes. And in March of 2019, county commissioners rejected a bid from the Ed Rachal Foundation to buy the building and demolish it. That's when the Texas Historical Commission offered to conduct the survey.
The study outlines plans for a four-star, $68 million structure. The study also outlines other details for potential developers. It includes floor plans, a budget and a breakdown of nearly $30 million in available tax incentives.
"We've always looked at it from an RFP. We want to sell this side with only one parameter, a price. Now for the first time, we can approach a developer and we've almost done the vetting for them," said Nueces County Judge Barbara Canales.
The Texas Historical Commission also recommended a new structural assessment of the old courthouse. The cost will be covered by federal grant money. Canales hopes to have it done by the end of the year.