Downtown Corpus Christi welcomes new businesses

Advocates of downtown redevelopment said forever is over and a new future is being written as we speak.

CORPUS CHRISTI (KIII NEWS) - Individuals who may think nothing happens in Downtown Corpus Christi can soon see a change with the "Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone" which is bringing in almost a dozen new businesses to downtown Coastal Bend. 

"Just tell them to come down here and look around, " said business liaison of the City of Corpus Christi Alyssa Barrera.

Barrera oversees the funding of the TIRZ.

"The fund has a balance of about three million dollars, but we have about 130 million dollars worth of projects somewhere in the pipeline that are taking advantage of our programs and help to utilize them to leverage. so we're getting a lot of leverage investment," Barrera said. 

"We've been talking about revitalizing downtown since I was in high school," said Nueces County Commissioner Mike Pusley.

Pusley is on the downtown reinvesting zone committee. 

"The bank account that's built up over this comes from the increased valuations in the downtown reinvestment zone. so as property values go up those values are reassigned to this reinvestment zone," Pusley said. 
 
Individuals can check out the city's website to see the number of new downtown businesses that are either open now or will be soon. Many new businesses already have taken advantage of the incentive program. 

"We've got about 30 new restaurants and bars that have benefited from the TRIZ program. another example is right behind us the goldfish and that just opened in the last couple of months and its an outdoor beer garden," said downtown management district Colette Rye.

While many of the new businesses have taken over old or existing buildings, others are starting from the ground up and opting for generous tax incentives. 

The Marriot Residence which is going up on Shoreline is a $15 million project, and they will get a $1 million in tax reinvestments. Hilton Garden Inn which is going up between Brewsters Ice House and Whataburger field is investing $26 million into its project and will get a $1.5 million in tax reinvestments.

"It's a big deal, its the biggest shot in the arm we've had to downtown Corpus Christi in forever,"Pusley said. 

Advocates of downtown redevelopment said forever is over and a new future is being written as we speak.

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