Archive for October, 2008

2010 NBA All-Star Game Coming to DFW

October 29, 2008

The DMN reports that we are getting the 2010 NBA All-Star Game. The game itself will be held in Arlington.

OK, so we won’t host the actual game. But we should host the auxiliary week-long events at venues that really bring in the tourists and spenders.

This is long overdue. The game hasn’t been here since 1986, which was way back in the NBA tight-shorts era (see right).

Many cities that have held the All-Star game in recent years are much smaller than Dallas. While refraining from bashing other cities, it’s more than overdue.

The NBA All-Star game is a chance to show off the city to the rest of the country and the world. There are also a couple of other events that I’m pretty sure are coming to Big D; more should be announced in the coming weeks.

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James Fantroy, R.I.P.

October 26, 2008

James Fantroy, the former city councilman for District 8, passed away today. He did a lot of good in southern Dallas, and I’m glad that Channel 8 and the DMN at least tried to talk about it and not just the controversy.

For those that don’t know, he is responsible for (among other things):

  • The Wal-Mart on Wheatland near 67.
  • The new Target and coming shopping center at Hampton & Wheatland.
  • The Inland Port in southern Dallas County.
  • The new South Central police division and station near Camp Wisdom & Lancaster.
  • The new fire station on Hampton, just north of Wheatland.

On the last city council, he was the only one to speak up in support of our efforts to get rid of the hot-sheet motels.

When I last saw him and got a chance to talk with him, I’m glad I got to thank him for helping to give me a start when no one else would. I appreciated the talks and encouragement when I first made my way into Dallas politics. I won’t forget the talk we had the night of the election in 2005.

Thanks for spending time and sharing with me when you didn’t have to. One day it will all make sense.

This Kid has a Great Future Ahead of him

October 26, 2008

In Palm Beach County, FL, Kathryn E. Cunningham/Canal Point Elementary has their own TV channel. According to their youtube page, since the beginning of September of 2008, KEC TV has been covering the presidential election for the students at the school.

Check out 5th grader Damon Weaver’s interview of VP Candidate Joe Biden. Great stuff!

(h/t to Huffington Post)

My Electoral Map – Friday 10/24

October 24, 2008

Here’s my map as it stands today. I have 259 solid electoral votes for Obama; one of the main reasons this race is nearly over is because of such a high solid number.


This map shows that Obama has increased his lead by picking up Ohio and Missouri.

Unlike the polls, I believe that McCain has no shot in Pennsylvania; I also have a feeling that North Carolina will go to McCain.

Leaning Obama states: Nevada, Colorado, New Mexico, Missouri, Ohio, Virginia, Florida.

Leaning McCain states: Montana, North Dakota, Indiana, West Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia.

Possible states to shift to Obama in the next 10 days: Indiana (11 votes).

Dallas County Commissioners See through the Smokescreen

October 22, 2008

Yesterday at Dallas County Commissioner’s Court, the commissioners voted 3-2 to not fund their portion of the Inland Port Plan.

While I agree that there should be some sort of plan in place, I disagree that the county should have majority control in creating and enforcing it.

It’s not about being against plans for a given area; I do support proper area planning. On the City Plan Commission I chair a committee whose main function is to facilitate the planning process for more than 20 neighborhoods associated with the Trinity River Project. I also chaired the CPC’s ad hoc committee for the City’s Form-Based Zoning Plan, which is now the subject of much debate. But this “planning” effort coming from the County, and Price in particular, smelled like something totally different.

The whole thing smelled like a power grab from the beginning, under the guise of efficiently planning the area. According to the article, The Allen Group has already spent more than $6 million in infrastructure, engineering , and other studies. They also are a proven entity, having done this type of development in California with a high degree of success.

The neighboring cities, Wilmer and Hutchins, didn’t want the county running the plan. I’m not the biggest fan of the Allen Group either, so I’m really trying to look at this issue in an objective manner.

Why do I call it a power grab? Because it was reported in a news story in June that the City of Hutchins actually applied for and received the $290,000 in question via a grant from NCTCOG. The article says it was diverted to the county. Price retorts in that article that Hutchins would only have to pay $1,000 for their portion of the new plan, but doesn’t address what happened to the grant.

This issue is very similar to what has Price has tried to do over the years in southern Dallas. If history is any predictor of future behavior, the smaller surrounding cities would have zero input on this plan.

The grab is strikingly similar to the construction of a bridge that Price tried to block in Hutchins. Trains would block ambulances from servicing the residents at times of emergency, but fortunately Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson made sure that it was built.

The piece of big news that is somewhat lost in this issue is Judge Jim Foster actually stepped up and voted against Price. To which Foster received a threat from Price that there would be a new county judge within two years. REALLY? Really? No duh. Getting a new county judge has nothing to do with Price – there was going to be a new judge anyway. A lot of capable people will be running.

So now that the county is not part of the plan, will Hutchins actually get their $290,000? Only time will tell.

Early Voting Starts Today

October 20, 2008

Here’s all the info you need to vote in Dallas:

*Check on your registration – You can view your ballot ahead of time (link)

* General Election Info (link)

*When and where to early vote (link)

*Demonstration of Touch Screen Voting Machine (Flash player required) (link)

*Services Available to Voters with Special Needs in Texas (link)

*League of Women Voters’ Online Voters Guide (link)

Colin Powell Endorses Barack Obama

October 19, 2008

On Meet the Press, ex-Secretary of State Colin Powell has endorsed Barack Obama for President.

Powell served as President Bush’s secretary of state from 2001 to 2005. Check it out. The second vid is the interview after Powell’s appearance on Meet the Press.

100,000 in St. Louis? $150 Million in One Month?

October 19, 2008

The Wall Street Journal reports that Barack Obama drew 100,000 people in St. Louis yesterday. The crowd started at the arch and stretched for the entire Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Park. The pics are below.

Then the Obama campaign reports that $150 million was raised in September. The average contribution was $86, with over 630,000 new donors!

I have never seen so many people energized for any election as I have seen over the past spring and summer. Let’s make sure it translates into votes!

Dead Man’s Curve: It’s Time to Go

October 15, 2008

By now, many of you have seen footage of the tanker crash and fire on Dead Man’s Curve in South Dallas. This is where 175/CF Hawn makes a 90-degree turn before its merge with 310.

Check out the street view. You can see the skid marks on the highway.

View Larger Map

For those of us that drive it regularly, Dead Man’s Curve is treacherous. For every accident, there are likely several close calls. Negotiating this curve in the rain will make you contemplate your life insurance policy. Seriously, it’s long overdue for this curve to be torn down. There are plans to do so as part of the Trinity Tollway project, but that’s not scheduled until 2010.

As it stands, the highway merge will be shut down for at least six months.

The road should have never been built in this fashion. This unfortunate accident gives us a chance to end a terrible piece of road construction once and for all.

My Electoral Map – Tuesday 10/14

October 14, 2008

Here is my electoral map as of today.


This map shows that Obama has increased his lead by picking up Florida and Colorado. I’m still not sold on Ohio being in Obama’s column. Florida is still very close, but I think that the enthusiasm for Obama in South Florida will outweigh what happens in Central Florida which tends to be more conservative. With McCain pulling out of Michigan, the state goes solidly for Obama as does Wisconsin.

Leaning Obama states: Washington, Nevada, Colorado, New Mexico, Virginia, North Carolina, Florida, Minnesota.

Leaning McCain states: Missouri, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Georgia, North Dakota.

Possible states to shift to Obama in the next two weeks: Ohio (20 votes).