SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) – Leaders of the Alamo Citizens Advisory Committee (ACAC) vow to move forward with a plan to tell the complete history of the Alamo using the ‘vision and guiding principles’ previously adopted by the panel. That includes the redevelopment of Alamo Plaza and a new museum.
The Committee met Wednesday for the first time since the Texas Historical Commission (THC) last week denied a permit to move the Cenotaph from its current location on the northern section of Alamo Plaza.
“This is not about any one element,” said San Antonio City Councilman Roberto Treviño who serves as a tri-chair of the Alamo Citizens Advisory Committee. “This is about the entire project, so we’ll continue to try to move forward methodically and thoughtfully.”
Several members voiced their displeasure with the THC and Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick who addressed the Commission before the vote last week, blocking plans for the relocation of the Cenotaph. Patrick urged the THC to deny the request for a permit. He also vowed to lead efforts to get funding from the Texas Legislature next year to fund a project that would better tell the story of the Shrine of Texas Liberty with the focus on the 1836 Battle of the Alamo.
“An unfortunate miscalculation by the THC is that they feel that they can pick elements that can and cannot be included in this plan. We communicated that that’s not how this works,” said Treviño.
ACAC tri-chair Lionel Sosa said the decision by the THC will further delay the Alamo project .
“They have broken an agreement and we will not stand for it,” said Sosa. “It’s going to cost time and money to taxpayers, to the people of Texas, to the people of San Antonio, and to the retail businesses,” he said.
ACAC member George Cisneros says the history of the Alamo is so much more than the 13-day siege and battle. He noted that it’s a place where people lived.
“It is a cemetery, it is a battleground, it is a commercial zone and those are all things that are part of the character and blood of San Antonio,” said Cisneros.
Part of the discussion also turned to ownership. The Alamo belongs to the people of Texas and the Texas General Land Office is the custodian of the Alamo, but committee tri-chair Sue Ann Pemberton said, “The City still owns the Plaza. The City still owns the Cenotaph.”
Treviño said the Cenotaph is staying put. “Barring any miracle, that’s not changing.”
However, he did say attorneys are looking at various options as the committee tries to determine how to move forward with the project.
“Our city attorney’s office, our attorneys over at the General Land Office and others are working hard to find those legal avenues to get a better understanding,” said Treviño.
The committee tri-chairs will draft a statement reaffirming plans to move forward with the project using the vision and guiding principles adopted by the ACAC. Committee members will review the statement before it’s released to the public.