Among the opportunities of fitting a four-block long retail center at the southern edge of downtown Laredo, is enhancing its relationship with the Rio Grande river. The area between town and river's edge, known as the Vega, is of little use due to periodic flooding, as it is located approximately thirty feet below the main street level. Working with the City of Laredo, this scheme explored the development of the edge as a river front plaza, with below plaza parking which would simply drain and dry-out between floods. This would additionally provide the reservoir of parking necessary to feed a large retail center.
Integrating the new center into the fabric of the City also required understanding and modifying the existing traffic patterns, including street closures, reversal of traffic directions, signalization additions, etc. Small, incremental changes can go along way into knitting the new in with the old.