Proposed $175 million plan would make big changes to Stockyards

A proposed $175 million plan would make big changes to the Fort Worth Stockyards.

The investment by Majestic Realty would transform the mule barns into shopping, dining, entertainment and office spaces on roughly 70 acres of Stockyards land.

Supporters call it a much needed facelift, but critics say it could hurt a piece of North Texas history.

A meeting Tuesday night at the Stockyards revealed a first look at the plans. The presentation was made on the dirt floor of the Cowtown Coliseum.

"In keeping with our core values, how do we bring more animals to the Stockyards?” said Craig Cavileer with Majestic Realty. “How do we bring more education, bring a bigger spotlight, other than just the herd twice a day? How do we do more of that?”

Part of the three-year plan will take buildings that have historic value, but are in disrepair, like the mule barns, and spruce them up to be restaurant and retail-ready.

The first phase of development will be Marine Creek, south of Exchange Avenue.

With a lock system, it would become a managed waterway, bustling with activity.

Not everyone applauded the presentation.

Three weeks ago, the National Trust for Historic Preservation added the Stockyards to its list of most endangered historic places.

Historic Fort Worth, business and property owners have tried to make sure new development wouldn't steal the western look and feel of one of Cowtown's most precious tourist attractions.

From the beginning, there has been pushback from historic groups.

During the presentation, the developer said he wasn't interested in pursuing a historic designation for buildings in the plan as a way of preserving them.

That didn't sit well with several people.

The master plan was unveiled to the Historic Stockyards Design District Task Force, who will eventually present their recommendations to city council, who will make the final decision.