Texans, Rodeo unveil new proposal to replace Astrodome with green space

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by Tiffany Craig / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on July 11, 2014 at 9:29 AM

HOUSTON -- There's a new proposal for the Astrodome and it includes a wrecking ball and some green space.

The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and the Houston Texans have a plan for what's known as the 8th Wonder of the World.

"If there is no way to save the building if there's no viable economic solution to repurposing the Astrodome, let's come up with the best possible use of that space," said Leroy Shafer, COO of the Houston Livestock Show and Rode.

Shafer told us the dome itself would be torn down and turned into a green space. That space would be surrounded by 72 columns and shaped like the original building.

The columns would hold plaques and mementos of what once stood. Panels between the columns could be used for special occasions like new year celebrations and the 2017 Super Bowl.

The price tag is $66 million.

"It really preserves the history and heritage and culture of that great building but it also gives us something we don't have here in NRG park right now and that is green usable space," said Shafer.

This idea comes after last year's rejection by voters to authorize up to $217 million in bonds to turn dome into a convention center.

Some Houstonian's want to keep the building standing, others have a more practical idea.

"I don't want to get rid of it," said Jewel Robinson. "I want to leave it standing."

"I don't know about green space," Mark Sonnier told us. "I would probably rather turn it into a parking lot."

The space is owned by Harris County and so far, no one has presented the proposal to commissioners.

They would be the ones to ultimately decide.

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett has said all along that he is opposed to any plan to demolish the Astrodome.

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