Cultural integration through adaptive-use in El Paso, Texas: Architecture can serve as an educational threshold that brings two diverse and complex cultures together and in the process, architecture can help to integrate cross-culturally
North, Chad Garrett
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This program attempts to analyze some of the fundamental elements which affect the downtown area of El Paso, Texas. The issues outlined and discussed are those which will help facilitate the advancement of the area into a multi-use facility. The area under study is referred to as "The Union Depot District. " The district is already in existence and would utilize an adaptive use process to enhance and restore it to its original state of when it was first built. The foundation and philosophy for developing such an area would be to bridge the gap of two immensely different cultures and create a state of coexistence. Multiculturalism is a fundamental political, economic and moral issue within the communities of both El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. The Issue of multiculturalism should and does address all of the components 2 which affect the human interest and needs in the area. The revitalization of the Union Depot District will benefit both the political and economic realms within the community. The issues dealt with in this thesis will describe how this area can benefit in the city culturally and offer economic gain. This program takes into account that the two neighboring communities are different economically, and should be treated this way. The recent North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) plan is to bolster the economy of the United States, Canada, and Mexico through more open trade practices. NAFT A will create a free flow of goods, services and investments among each country involved. Along with the economic gain that NAFT A will bring to the international boundary of Mexico and the United States, the border cities will also become more urbanized and, as a result, more specialized. As a result of increased trade opportunities under NAFTA, both EI Paso and Ciudad Juarez anticipate economic gam and further urbanization. By understanding the diversity of the two conunwlities of EI Paso and Ciudad Juarez, a better wlderstanding of multiculturalism will occur.