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Old County Courthouse hotel-conversion survey presented at commissioners court

Posted at 10:20 PM, Jul 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-24 23:20:29-04

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.