Lubbock's Depot District Undergoing Changes - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

2/21/05

Lubbock's Depot District Undergoing Changes

It's been Lubbock's leading place for entertainment and nightlife for more than a decade, and officials are now taking Lubbock's Depot District in a new direction.

Organizers are planning to market the district as much more than a nightlife destination. A handful of established bars already mean big business in the area. Plans are now underway to add businesses that will attract visitors during the day time also. These changes start with the adoption of a new name. From The Depot District to The Depot Entertainment District.

"Changing the name of the district is one of the most important things we can do to let tourists know what the Depot District is," explains Don Caldwell, President of the Depot Entertainment District Association.

He says the city of Lubbock has known for years the district is Lubbock's premier entertainment hot spot, now, he wants the world to know and it's only the beginning. "I think there's talks with folks right now with retail and hopefully some of them will come in and establish businesses real soon here," says Caldwell.

The association is recruiting several new businesses, focusing on adding specialty shops and restaurants. "We have a real good situation with the bars and I think that we need to balance that with shopping opportunities for people," he says.

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The ever growing area known as the Depot District is drawing record crowds these days. The area once known as a college hang out is developing into an entertainment district for all ages. With martini bars, breweries, nightclubs and live music, but the growth in this Lubbock hotspot doesn't come without growing pains.

Making the Depot Entertainment District a tourist destination. "All indications for years have been that we need to be more user friendly to people who come to Lubbock," he explains. That's why plans are underway to establish a visitor's center in the Buddy Holly Center just in time for the tourist season. "If people outside hear about Lubbock and realize there's a lot to do in Lubbock they're going to be interested," says Caldwell. And the Lubbock City Council seems to agree these changes plus adding 'Entertainment' to the name will make a significant impact. "I'm excited about it, I think that just that one word is going to attract people," says Councilwoman Linda DeLeon.

There are also plans to add signs along the interstate to point visitors toward the area. All of this of course must first be approved by the city council. It won't cost anything to change the name but it will cost money to change the signs and that number is still undetermined.

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