City leaders in Waco are looking to developers for help in transforming a central part of the city.
They have put about 14 acres of prime real estate up for residential, commercial and retail development. City leaders are looking for dense, pedestrian-oriented structures with major public spaces, especially along the river.
Megan Henderson, with the Waco Downtown Development Corporation, is excited about the request for proposals.
“The city went big and bold,” she said. “Developers are going to respond to this RFP (request for proposals) with ideas that we haven’t imagined yet. We’re going to see things that surprise us and challenge us.”
One factor in their favor is the growing national trend of urban living.
"Our fastest growing demographic in this community is young professionals. Young professionals are your number two consumer of urban residential products," Chris McGowan with the Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce said. "It's almost a perfect storm of opportunity."
The City of Waco will hold a conference for potential developers in March.
Proposed master plans are due on June 7 and a winner will likely be chosen by July.