WINE AND FOOD
Conceptual ideas for the long-planned Texas Center for Wine and Culinary Arts have been rethought and relocated.
Supporters plan to have a smaller, smarter center located on a rise above the Texas Tech University teaching vineyards at the Hill Country University Center.
The new focus will be education, as opposed to the previously designed, larger center that focused on entertainment, said Dave Davenport, a retired Fortune 500 executive who took the reins on the project five years ago and is now immediate past chairman of the board.
“It’s full steam ahead. With no conference center or events space, our new fundraising goal for the center is less than half of what it was originally,” Davenport said. “We have incorporated the new center into the Hill Country University Center’s master plan, which has received an OK from the city.”
The new footprint is around 16,000 square feet, as opposed to the more than 30,000-square-foot original design that had featured conference center and event space.
And with the smaller building that has no downtown land purchase attached, organizers now tab the donor-funded project at between $4 million and $5 million, as opposed to the $10-$12 million sought with the original design. That also will mean a smaller operational budget.
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