San Antonio Missions | Texas Public Radio

San Antonio Missions

Tracy Barnet

The World Heritage Designation has put San Antonio’s Missions into the spotlight. Soon there will be something that should give those Missions yet another important perspective.

“We plan on spending at least 40 minutes at each Mission. Concepcion, San Jose, Espada and finish up at San Juan,” said American Indians in Texas--Spanish Colonial Missions Executive Director Ramon Vasquez.

Now that the San Antonio Missions are a World Heritage Site, big money is predicted to flow into the community in the form of tourism. The sites, some of which sit in low-income communities, could provide a spark to the neighborhoods and revitalizing these areas. Already the Archidiocese of San Antonio has leased the land behind Mission Concepcion to a developer to build apartments. 

John Burnett / NPR

This week on Fronteras:

•          A federal task force has moved into the Rio Grande Valley to investigate long-standing political corruption. 

•          NPR’s John Burnett talks to Texas Public Radio about the origins of the federal corruption probe, including concerns that businesses will not bring economic development to the region as long as the corruption is so widespread.

•          Teens living on both sides of the border near San Diego are tackling issues affected young Hispanics, including high school dropout rates and unemployment.

Eileen Pace / TPR News

Over the weekend the United Nations Education, Scientific, and Cultural Organization voted to officially recognize the Spanish Missions of San Antonio, including the Alamo, as a World Heritage Site. It is the first Texas site found to be of"outstanding cultural or natural importance to the common heritage of humanity" by the international body.

Eileen Pace / TPR News

BONN — At a Sunday morning announcement in Germany, after votes were tallied at 6 a.m. Central time in the U.S., the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s World Heritage Committee approved the listing of San Antonio Missions as a world heritage site.

With this, the iconic landmarks of five Spanish Roman Catholic sites, built in the 18th century in and around what is now the city of San Antonio, become Texas’ first World Heritage site, and the 23rd in the United States, joining the likes of the Statue of Liberty, Yellowstone National Park, and the Grand Canyon.