IRVING, TX - DECEMBER 20: NFL fans tailgate outside Texas Stadium before the last home game against the Baltimore Ravens on December 20, 2008 in Irving, Texas. The Cowboys are playing their final regular season home game before moving to a new stadium in Arlington, Texas next season. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
To be certain, the 84-acres of land in which the stadium currently sits is prime real estate. The question for the city is how to use the land in a way that will equal--or, perhaps, surpass the recognizability of an icon like Texas Stadium.
"[Texas Stadium] was what people saw as the main entryway to Irving," said Maura Gast, executive director of the convention and visitors bureau in Irving, in a recent interview with the Wall Street Journal. "We're literally changing the face, the front entry, of the city."
This is, of course, a monumental task, one that will be handled by city officials with care. They've hired Forest City Enterprises, Inc., a Cleveland-based real estate management and development company to plan the redevelopment. The company has some time to mull its options; redevelopment will not likely begin, in earnest, for a year or two after the implosion, when an overhaul of the State Highway 114-Loop 12 exchange is completed.
Construction on the DART light rail will be completed in 2011.
Retail, residential and mixed development have all been floated as likely uses for the land. Whatever wins out, the City of Irving wants it to stand out as obviously at the intersection of Loop 12 and SH 114 as did Texas Stadium for 39 years.
"It is one of the largest redevelopment opportunities in this part of the entire country," said Chris Wallace, with the Greater Irving-Las Colinas Chamber of Commerce, per WFAA 8."When you drive by, you have to have that 'wow' factor."