If council approves the deal, the Houston Hispanic Forum willlease the building, located on Caroline Street south of downtown,for the next 30 years and be responsible for an estimated $2.6million needed to renovate it. The work will probably take a yearto complete.

"The community doesn't want to lose it," says Rey Gonzales, vicepresident of the Forum."The building needs someone to take care ofit and put it to use."

The Houston Guard had deeded the fortress to the Texas Guard,which occupied it until 1991. Since then it has been used forstorage by Houston Community College. When city council had heardof Forum's plans, it had bought the building from the college tosave it from the wrecking ball.

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