After an 18-month steering process, the El Paso Downtown Arts District was officially designated by the Texas Commission on the Arts in October 2011. The District is anchored by museums, greenspaces, performing arts facilities, cultural venues and tourist amenities.
Now, the Downtown Arts District has become the place where El Paso and the surrounding community meet for high-quality arts and entertainment. Annually 2.2 million people visit the District to attend museum exhibitions, concerts, theatre performances, festivals and more. The District has a projected economic impact of $7 million in Hotel/Motel Revenue and $28.2 million in local restaurant and bar revenue. With the addition of Southwest University Ballpark, the Pedestrian Pathway, Artspace El Paso and the Mexican American Cultural Center, Children's Museum on the horizon, the District is continuing to evolve.
During a typical year, the Downtown Arts District has:
- 50 exhibitions, from local art and artifacts to major traveling collections from American and international museums
- 21 symphony orchestra concerts and 4 opera performances
- 5 touring Broadway productions and 30 local theatrical productions
- 150 open-air concerts
- 200 lectures and workshops
- 80 children's camps and 125,000 students visiting for field trips
- 10 major arts/culture festivals
- Daily opportunities for local artists to present, sell or perform work