Bridge Street Plaza

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Location: Waco, TX Client: City Center of Waco / City of Waco Category: Civic Scope: New Construction Services: Architecture / Planning

As of a few years ago, Bridge Street no longer existed as a physical construct. First devastated by fire in 1871 and then rebuilt, leveled by the Great Tornado in 1953 and still partially reclaimed; Bridge Street was ultimately erased as part of the City’s urban renewal project in 1968. For decades it had existed as an empty green space with a poorly paved access drive backing up to a feed and seed store. Yet, Bridge Street has an important role in the history of Waco, and its diverse minority communities; as a gathering place where freed slaves, and immigrants of all kinds, were able to pursue their livelihoods and build community. In recent years, East Waco has faced economic struggles and many failed development proposals, but has since experienced a new groundswell of development interest.

With the purchase and development of each set of adjacent lots, one for a multifamily development and the other for a pair of hotels, the City recognized an opportunity to revive Bridge Street. Working with seventy feet of right of way terminating in an empty field bisected by a broad electrical easement, the re-birth of bridge street began to take shape.