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ASARCO Smokestacks Will Come Down Next Year

Two weeks ago, I asked you to take my poll, please, about how you felt about the ASARCO smokestacks – should they stay or should they go?  About 57% of you said they should stay.  Unfortunately, it looks like the smokestacks across I-10 from UTEP are not long for this world…

ASARCO smokestacks will be torn down

The future of El Paso’s City Hall might still be up in the air, but the future of the ASARCO smoke stacks is certain – they are coming down.  Trustee Roberto Puga, who is in charge of remediating the site across I-10 from UTEP, said yesterday that the “Save The Stacks” group did not meet the requirements to save the stacks that were set up more than a year ago.

Puga said that while the Save the Stacks group led what he called an admirable effort to save the iconic structures, in the end, they didn’t submit a proposal that met all the criteria.  Robert Ardovino with the Save the Stacks group said his group still hopes Puga can find a solution to saving the smelter’s stacks.

KTSM asked residents around town how they felt about the stacks.

One westsider said she had heard that it has caused diseases in the past and she believes that if its something that is not good for society, it just needs to go.  Another resident said if a better use of the space can be found, then she doesn’t have an attachment to the stacks.

El Paso City Reps had the chance to take full ownership of the site last week, but voted against buying the land and the stacks for 10 – 15 million dollars.  City Rep Susie Byrd said she thinks there would’ve been more support on council to buy the ASARCO sit, but the price tag of 10 million dollars to buy it was too much.

Byrd did propose a resolution to support the stacks without buying them, which passed, and she said she still has hope that Puga will see the community support for saving the stacks, and work with the community to find a way to preserve them.

The stacks are scheduled to come down sometime next year.

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