Shopping center set to open Christmas season 2022; COVID-19 business loans still available

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By the Christmas shopping season next year, the city of Victoria expects Crossroads residents to have a new shopping center on the north side of the city.

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The first announcement of new retailers is set to be made in December, said Assistant City Manager Mike Etienne during a Victoria Economic Development Corp. Partnership meeting Tuesday morning. The 150,000-square-foot shopping center, located near Home Depot along Zac Lentz Parkway, does not have businesses finalized yet to occupy the forthcoming site.

An offramp is set to be moved farther back along the westbound side of Zac Lentz Parkway to allow shoppers to access the site. Both the ramp movement and shopping center, Etienne said, are set to begin construction in January and be complete within 2022 — an update to the project’s timeline that the Advocate previously reported.

Zero-interest loans of up to $50,000 are still available to businesses affected by the pandemic.

The Victoria City Council approved the loans in an agreement with PeopleFund just over a year ago. About $800,000 in funds are still available, Etienne said Tuesday morning.

The city has provided a total grant of $500,000 to PeopleFund for the program. Of that, $345,000 is provided as loan capital that will be available to small businesses. PeopleFund’s match of $500,000 will go entirely toward the loan capital fund, for the original loan pool of $845,000, the Advocate previously reported.

Only one loan has been allocated, Etienne said.

Weekly VEDC partnership meetings are at 7:30 a.m. Tuesdays at the Victoria College’s Leo J. Welder Center for the Performing Arts, 214 N. Main St. The meetings are open to the public, allow for discussion and include a variety of topics relevant to Victoria and the Crossroads.

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