Exciting things are happening in the historic Stockyards of Fort Worth, Texas. Local family business – Hickman Companies – has partnered with Majestic Realty Co. to preserve, protect, enhance and engage one of the largest tourist destinations in Texas. As one of the most talked about projects in DFW, five key points stand out.
- The primary focus: Hickman Companies’ overall goal is to preserve, protect, enhance and engage the Fort Worth Stockyards National Historic District that our city is proud to call the “soul” of Fort Worth. Above all things, the primary focus is to keep the Stockyards an authentic and beautiful part of our city’s heritage, and a safe place for families to learn about Texas history and the western lifestyle. Hickman Companies, with the partnership of Majestic Realty Co., plans to accomplish this through strategic enhancements and targeted preservation of buildings that have deteriorated over the course of time, while staying true to the character and history that is the essence of the Stockyards.
- Positive changes: From day one, Majestic-Hickman has taken measures to restrict the types of buildings that can be added to the Stockyards District. Prior to this effort, there were extremely limited regulations governing what could be built. Anything from high rises to used car lots could have been built on the Stockyards District grounds. However, through the initial effort of this project, the City and Majestic-Hickman took important steps to add protections to the Stockyards district with more protections on the way.
- The project perimeters: While the project will focus on several key areas of the Stockyards, certain elements in the district will not be included in the Heritage project. The Stockyards Coliseum, the iconic Stock Yards gateway sign at the corner of Main Street and Exchange Avenue and other iconic buildings will not be touched. Majestic/Hickman’s key focus will be expanding on the unoccupied lots toward the east of the district and adaptively reusing the Mule Barns and other iconic structures within their property. Efforts will also be geared toward bringing appropriate shops, unique local restaurants, hotels and office tenants to the area.
- With preservation comes education: For years, local schools have visited the Fort Worth Stockyards to learn about Texas history, and to see a glimpse of what life was like in decades ago when the Stockyards were a center of western and ranching commerce. While the Herd Cow Camp Program is still running smoothly, some buildings that house numerous field trips throughout the school year are starting to crumble. It will not be long before these buildings age to the point where it is no longer safe for our children to experience certain aspects of the Stockyards history. Majestic-Hickman plan to restore the damage and ensure that these important structures stay intact and safe for years to come.
- This isn’t the first Stockyard project for Hickman: Holt Hickman’s heart and soul lives in our city’s Stockyards National Historic District. From housing the Fort Worth Herd on his Stockyard properties at no cost, to investing $1,000,000 in the Livestock Exchange Building renovations, Hickman loved the district just as much as anyone in the community. Hickman Companies chose to take on this project in order to preserve the authenticity that Holt Hickman loved dearly. This is Holt Hickman’s legacy.