The TexARKana City Council has heard the first of three readings of an ordinance proposing an “entertainment district” located downtown.
Recently, the Arkansas State Legislature approved Bill 492: “To promote hospitality and tourism; To establish areas of a city or town that highlight restaurant, entertainment, and hospitality options; To establish temporary or permanent designated entertainment districts.”
Exploring new options for growth offered by the state, the planning commission proposed an ordinance “to provide opportunities for increased activities.”
Conducting four workshops and a public hearing, the Planning Commission solicited and considered input from the Texarkana Police Department, the Historic District Commission, Main Street Texarkana, many of the 85 downtown small business owners, and the public at large.
The resulting ordinance would, if passed, allow for a 14-block area of downtown to be designated as an “Entertainment District.” Adults would be able to consume adult beverages out-of-doors that are purchased at local establishments, excluding liquor stores. The ordinance would also allow for road closures that coincide with cultural events like street dances, musical acts, and art exhibits.
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