Archive for the ‘Trinity River’ Category

My Take on Metal Recyclers in the Trinity River Corridor

March 3, 2009

I listened and watched very intently to today’s City Council Briefing, regarding the issue of metal recyclers in the Trinity River Corridor. Some went on and on about the metal businesses and how they should stay in the same place.

95% of the focus was about how wrong the city is to ask recyclers to move off of South Lamar Street in South Dallas and other areas. Very little was said about the residents that have had to put up with these places for decades.

No one disputed the visual blight and the noxious fumes that are emitted by metal recyclers. While their services are obviously needed, there are too many of them located in a small area of south Dallas and Cadillac Heights.

The fact is that most of these places have been allowed to exist in lower-income communities in Dallas.

The Trinity River Project is not just about businesses, it’s also about residents. It’s easy to say metal recyclers should stay where they are when you are blessed enough to live far away from where they wreak havoc on communities.

Times change, and from time to time various areas of Dallas are rezoned. As a result, sometimes businesses have to cease operations in that are within a given time period.

Why all the fuss over South Lamar? With the exception of the closing of Woodward Paint and Body, there was a lot less outcry when Ross Avenue was rezoned. I hope there is not a double-standard at work in the City of Dallas.

Something has to be done, and I believe the City Council as a whole will realize that it’s time for these places to go. At the very least, the bad actors should be made to shape up or ship out. They cannot continue to exist in their current state.

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The Trinity River Project – So Much Work to be Done

February 27, 2009

It’s been a while since the Trinity Trust model was unveiled, but I saw it for the first time yesterday.

As you know, I was an early critic of the project. I realized that the voters have spoken and we are moving forward. But as I began to look at the project on my own, my view changed over the course of years.

At the City Plan Commission, I chair the Urban Design Advisory Committee and our task is to review 23 different areas that are associated with the Trinity with respect to zoning and design.

We are on plan #4. Again, there are 23 study areas. There’s a lot of work ahead of us, and I hope to be there to see it through to the end.

Back to the model. I did my best to get the entire model on my phone, and even in panoramic view it was impossible.

Seeing Oak Cliff, West Dallas, South Dallas, and other areas together on a 40 foot by 15 foot (my estimate) wall map along with the model reminded me of the work we must get going on the City Plan Commission and in this city in general. Townview High School, Pinkston High School, Cedar Crest, Fair Park, downtown Dallas…it’s all connected.

The Trinity River Project is about more than a tollroad. It’s also about more than a park. It’s also about positively transforming the lives of the citizens of Dallas. I hope everyone keeps an open mind and seeks to find out info on their own as this project moves forward.

Designing the Trinity

November 16, 2007

I went to the Designing the Trinity conference today at City Hall. At several points, I was truly amazed.

No trinitinis for moi, but in the next few days I will tell you about some of the amazing things I saw. Dallas is realizing that the best ideas don’t always originate in Dallas. More to come.

Eddie Bernie Johnson’s Historic Victory

November 9, 2007

District 30 Congresswoman Eddie Bernice Johnson is doing what you need to do is Congress.

By a 79-14 vote, the Senate today completed the first override of a veto by President Bush, enacting a $23 billion Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) bill into law over his objections.

The Atlanta Business Chronicle summed it up best:

The Water Resources Development Act authorizes Army Corps of Engineers projects dealing with regional water planning, water storage, flood control, storm protection, environmental restoration and inland navigation. The Water Resources Development Act is supposed to be authorized every two years, but Congress has not re-authorized the legislation since 2000.

In Georgia, there are extreme drought conditions and the water resources have been very poorly managed due to bad weather and overbuilding. I’m glad the Dallas area is not in that position.

That’s how you govern. Thank you Ms. Johnson for making sure that water-related projects in Dallas and the rest of the country go forward.

The Mayor Vows to Deliver

November 7, 2007

Tom Leppert says he’ll deliver on the Trinity River Plan. Dave from the DMN writes more here.

I believe in him. No Mayor has ever been thrown into the fire like Leppert. I believe his word more than any other Mayor since I’ve lived in Dallas. Give him time – he just got there.

A Final Analysis

November 7, 2007

This morning I’ve been doing what I do post-election. I always analyze the numbers, with a focus on the larger Southern Dallas Council Districts (3,4,5,7, and 8).

Here are the breakouts. They are not “official” county numbers, but you have to know the little pockets of Oak Cliff and South Dallas to break out some of the precincts. To give you a feel about these margins, the districts not listed below won by an average of 400 votes. However, if you take out Districts 9 and 14 Vote No was far ahead on the averages. This is as in-depth of an analysis as you’ll see out there.

(The ‘Precincts Won’ are the amount won by the Vote No side)

District 3 TOTAL
For (Vote Yes) 6104 ; 46.7%
Against (Vote No) 6956; 53.3%
Precincts Won 37 of 74; 50%
Margin: 852 votes

District 4 TOTAL
For (Vote Yes) 2352 ; 45.4%
Against (Vote No) 2828; 54.6%
Precincts Won 26 of 35; 74.3%
Margin: 476 votes

District 5 TOTAL
For (Vote Yes) 2823 ; 47.2%
Against (Vote No) 3157; 54.6%
Precincts Won 24 of 34; 70.6%
Margin: 334 votes

District 7 TOTAL
For (Vote Yes) 1854 ; 45.4%
Against (Vote No) 1526 ; 54.6%
Precincts Won 7 of 38; 18.4%
Margin: 328 for Vote Yes

District 8 TOTAL
For (Vote Yes) 1533 ; 48.3%
Against (Vote No) 1640; 51.7%
Precincts Won 15 of 36; 41.7%
Margin: 107 votes

South Dallas was the only place in the south that Vote Yes won a significant number of precincts. They did do well in some pockets of District 3 and 8. The margins in Council Districts 3 (Dave Neumann) and 4 (Dwaine Caraway) had margins that were higher than the average.

Anyone that says that this wasn’t a hard-fought election was kidding themselves. It wasn’t a “civic smackdown” as was written in one article today. What this race came down to, as many races do, is the actual campaigning. And it’s about winning the precincts that matter.

And this is clearly where Dwaine Caraway shined. From sending specific people in certain neighborhoods to glad-handing at polling places. He wasn’t just working District Four, he was all over southern Dallas. You now know what I know – Dwaine is the best campaigner in southern Dallas and one of the best in the City. I think the best are Carol & Laura Reed, Dwaine, Ed Valentine, and Rob Allyn. Caraway put people in the places they needed to be, and his “in-game” adjustments are always the best. Hate all you want, but he is the Michael Jordan of the southern campaign game and the numbers always bear out. His team wins, and people all over the city are noticing.

The people involved can make or break elections. And there you have it.

More to Come

November 7, 2007

Thanks for the calls & e-mails about my live blog from last night. Look for a little more Trinity River Vote analysis later this morning.

I’m Glad it’s Over

November 6, 2007

This campaign brought out some tactics that truly disgusted me, which I blogged about last week.

The Vote Yes effort in the Black parts of Southern Dallas was a joke. To be effective in any campaign, you must win your own neighborhood. What did all that money pay for if you can’t win where you live and you had minimal people working? From the stupid Laura Miller flyers, to telling people things like “you’ll have to pay a toll to get out of Oak Cliff.” If people want to ignore stuff like that, fine. Whatever it takes, huh? Just like the anti-Tom Leppert flyers from this June. But the facts remain. And Vote Yes found out it is who you hire in the south, as many a good person in the past who wanted to win a campaign in the south has realized.

I have faith that the people on this City Council will do the right thing with respect to this project. A lot of good things will come out of this project, and now we must all work together to make sure that it will be the best project possible.

Early Voting -Dallas Prop 1

November 6, 2007

For (Vote Yes) 9,570 43.68 %
Against (Vote No) 12,341 56.32 %

Observations about Early Voting

Far North Dallas and Southern Dallas voted heavily toward Vote No.
Lakewood and parts of near East Dallas favor Vote Yes.However, some heavy voting places in East Dallas and Far East Dallas I-30 corridor are voting No at a good clip.
Vote No is pretty strong in the Garland Road corridor.
Kessler Park and Mountain Creek are voting No
South Dallas is voting Yes but the numbers are quite low compared to other parts of the South.

I’ve heard that turnout was strong in various precincts today, and these numbers are so low that this can still go either way.

Live Blogging the Election Results

November 6, 2007

Check back after the polls close tonight. I will be live blogging the election results. This is part of what I do when I help to run campaigns, so look for me to put some insight behind what the numbers mean.