A rendering of the Mexican American Cultural Center in the Main Library in Downtown El Paso.

Construction of the Mexican American Cultural Center will move forward at the Main Library in Downtown.

The El Paso City Council on Sept. 13 awarded the$22.5 million construction manager contract to Sundt Construction of El Paso.

The MACC will preserve and celebrate El Paso’s unique Mexican American culture and history. 

It will include exhibition and performance spaces, a black box theater, an auditorium, classrooms, dance studios, broadcast and recording studios, culinary programs, artist in residence studios and a roof-top lounge.

On site will be a sculpture by El Paso artist Julio Sanchez de Alba titled “The Insurmountable Task,” a memorial that honors the Men of Company E. 

The company was the only Mexican American infantry unit that fought in Word War II, including 124 from El Paso.

The cultural center is funded through the voter-approved 2012 quality of life bond, as well as the 2019 Capital Plan and the reallocation of $7.3 million in cost savings from other capital projects, city officials said.

Construction is slated to begin this fall and is expected to be completed by summer 2023. Construction was originally slated to start in 2020 but was deferred because of the pandemic.

“Our Downtown Arts District will undergo spectacular changes because we are able to optimize our resources to support amenities our community told us they wanted to see,” Sam Rodriguez, chief operations and transportation officer, said in a statement.

The Main Library and the adjacent Cleveland Square Park will also be renovated.

After much debate about where the center should be built and whether it should be its own building, the City Council in 2018 approved building the MACC in the Main Library at 501 N. Oregon near the ballpark.


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