orangeleader.com (Orange, Texas)

Local News

June 19, 2013

Proposal unveiled to restore Astrodome

HOUSTON, Texas —

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett praised a proposal unveiled Wednesday by the Harris County Sports and Convention Corporation to renovate and rehabilitate Harris County's fabled Astrodome and convert it to a state-of-the-art conference and exposition center capable of hosting a large number of sports, convention or community events.

"The concept is excellent," Emmett said. "It not only preserves an iconic structure, but it gives Houston and Harris County a truly unique and historic venue for conferences and events. Meeting planners around the world will want to use the space."

Emmett said the idea of clearing the interior of the county-owned Dome to create a 350,000-square-foot, open and air-conditioned meeting space within Reliant Park perfectly complements the venue's other tenants - the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and the Houston Texans - while providing unique facilities for other functions such as sporting events, expositions, festivals and major community events.

The Harris County Sports and Convention Corporation approved the proposal at its monthly meeting Wednesday afternoon and will officially present its recommendation to Harris County Commissioners Court at the court's Capital Improvements Hearing at 9 a.m. on June 25. Emmett and other court members have met with members of the sports corporation and been briefed throughout the process. 

"It has taken a long time to get to this point," Emmett said. "But I believe the concept for repurposing the Astrodome will give us a facility that will garner much attention and will make us the events capital of the world."

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