September 17, 2014

"Welcome to Dallas: Paradox City" – A Tale of Motordom

Jeff Tumlin (a San Francisco-based contributor to our Next Generation Transportation Certificate) tweeted:

How did the @dallasnews become the most sophisticated US paper on local planning and transport issues?

That was an irresistible invitation to click, whereupon we found this column by Mark Lamster, the Dallas Morning News architecture critic.  (It’s impressive that they even have an architecture critic.)
Here’s an excerpt:

Instead of building those highways that are so expensive, Dallas might fix its own streets and signals, which are in such disgraceful condition, to make those streets more amenable to entrepreneurs of all scales. As the urban planner Jeffrey Tumlin recently told a rapt audience of concerned Dallasites at a transportation summit organized by the American Institute of Architects and the Greater Dallas Planning Council, these kind of street repairs actually create more jobs and local economic impact than large highway building projects, in which so much money goes for heavy machinery. And yet, when I asked Dallas City Councilman Lee Kleinman when the city would get its streets repaired, this was his response: “Not in our lifetime.” Perhaps he would change the city’s tag line to “Big Things Don’t Happen Here.”
But that’s not really Dallas. And unfortunately that can’t-do spirit does not seem to apply to the building of the Trinity Toll Road, which stands as the acme of Dallas’s circular, self-defeating logic. At the same time that the city is spending millions to develop the space between the levees into an urban playground, it is moving forward with a plan to drive a massive highway through that space, cutting the city off from the very amenity it is building.

Whole tale here.

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Leave a Reply to Ron SCancel Reply

  1. Hmm..Kinda sounds like the Vancouver region with the building of the Port Mann and the Massey Tunnel, our versions of the Trinity Toll Road