Steering committee lays out costs and locations of proposed Lubb

Steering committee lays out costs and locations of proposed Lubbock Expo Center

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

After voters elected to give the auditorium-coliseum back to Texas Tech, the Board of Regents voted to demolish the structure which leaves a void for mid-sized dirt floor events.

To help fill that need the county is leaving it up to voters to decide if a new tax-funded expo center is needed.

"It will cater to concerts that don't fill up the United Supermarkets Arena, that are too big for the civics center," said Randy Jordan, Chairman of the steering committee. "It will be a great place for monster truck events, motocross, gymnastics, wrestling, hockey, livestock judging, equine events of all types. Amateur and professional rodeos. Folks the options are endless and perfect for all age groups."

One specific event that will benefit from a new dirt floor arena is the ABC Rodeo. When the city abandoned the coliseum it let organizers scrambling to find a new home for the West Texas staple. 

"This project is going to be really going to be beneficial to the City of Lubbock, the county, ABC Rodeo," said Ray Short. "I mean the amount of people that come to town already, to a venue like this I mean it's going to help."

The proposed expo center will be large. It will seat 6,000 people and will be outfitted with state of the art sound and video systems.

"Designed to where it can be certainly rodeo, designed where equestrian, again, multi event center," Jordan said.

The facility would be funded through a $50 million bond coming from a proposed two percent increase in the hotel occupancy rate and a five percent hike in the motor vehicle rental tax. 

It will also be supplemented through a $10 million trust to ensure no extra costs come back on residents.

"We understand that the folks of Lubbock County don't want an increase in property taxes so we had to come up with a business plan where by we could avert that. So the venue tax is the best way to do that," he said.

The hikes will have to be approved by voters on November 6th. 

If approved the estimated the facility will be completed before the 2021 ABC Rodeo.

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