San Antonio World Heritage Center Coming Soon!

The World Heritage Center is a project led by San Antonio’s World Heritage Office that aims to add an orientation center and community spaces to the Southside and Mission San Jose area.

Photo Credit: Dunaway Associates and Muñoz & Co.

Revealed in June 2020, the community asked that the center provide history, art, and culture of the community around the missions, according to a survey. The World Heritage Center will now include 10,077-square-feet of indoor-outdoor meeting space, complete the walking trail at Mission Branch Library, and connect the trail from the center to Mission San Jose.

Photo Credit: Dunaway Associates and Muñoz & Co.

About World Heritage Center

The overall project is funded by the 2017-2022 Bond. The project includes a $5 million allocation from the Library and Cultural Facilities proposition as leverage funding for a new facility to provide an orientation center, community space, and other facility spaces as needed and $2.25M from Parks and Open Space for site improvements to support the center.

In May 2021, City Council approved the reallocation of $1.5M from Parks Open Space to support campus-wide improvements to the Mission Drive-In for the World Heritage Center, the Mission Branch Library and the Harvey Najim YMCA. There is additional funding of $845,000 from the Tricentennial Commission for art, design enhancements and interpretive elements for the center as a legacy gift.

The project scope for the new World Heritage Center includes the following:

  • Approximately 10,077 square feet of flexible indoor/outdoor exhibit and meeting space; interior is 5,672 square feet and outdoor veranda space is 4,405 square feet
  • Additional parking along North Loop Drive and Mission Branch Library
  • Drum Circle
  • Completion of walking trail at Mission Branch Library
  • Connection trail (on Mission Drive-In property) from World Heritage Center to Mission San Jose via Roosevelt Ave.

Architects have submitted an updated look at the planned $9.5 million upgrades to the old Mission Drive-In theater, now known as Mission Marquee, and the future site of the center. The new renderings, submitted to the Historic and Design Review Commission for consideration on Wednesday, May 18, give us a look at some of the more detailed art elements in the architecture of the World Heritage Center that pull imagery from native flora and fauna.

Photo Credit: Dunaway Associates and Muñoz & Co.

One of the renderings in the agenda documents shows intricate depictions of a water bird, water flowers, and “nopals,” or cacti, carved into the archways of the World Heritage Center at 3100 Roosevelt Avenue.

Photo Credit: Dunaway Associates and Muñoz & Co.
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