The El Paso Passport Agency, located less than ten blocks from the U.S.-Mexico border, celebrates its grand opening today. As the State Department's newest passport facility, the El Paso agency will provide a valuable service to area residents by facilitating cross border travel.
By offering expedited service, the El Paso agency will make it more convenient for U.S. citizens to get a passport if they are traveling within 14 days or have a life or death emergency. Currently, applicants in this area of the country who need expedited service must travel several hundred miles to Houston or Tucson. The new agency complements the existing passport acceptance services provided by post offices and the District Clerk's office.
The El Paso Passport Agency is one of several agencies made possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 -- or the "stimulus act" -- and with the support of Congressman Silvestre Reyes. Its opening resulted in the creation of 34 jobs in El Paso, and we are proud to say that the majority of the agency staff is from El Paso.
The new agency is conveniently located Downtown in the newly renovated, historic Anson Mills Building at 303 North Oregon Street in El Paso, Texas. The building sits on the original site of the 1832 Ponce de Leon ranch. Architect Henry C. Trost constructed the original structure in 1910-1911. At the time, the Anson Mills building, referred to locally as the "Mills" building was the second concrete-frame skyscraper in the United States and the tallest building in El Paso. It is located across from San Jacinto Plaza. Local businesses and community groups are working with local government to revitalize El Paso's downtown and the State Department is proud to be part of that effort. The El Paso Passport Agency staff looks forward to serving area residents and to facilitating their travel plans as we head into the summer travel season.
For more information about passports and visas, please visit travel.state.gov.