Archive for April, 2015

2015 Neighborhood Grant Applications

Posted by    |    April 24th, 2015 at 6:21 pm

 
The 2015 Supplimental Grant application is now available for download.

Please go to the drop down “Neighborhood” tab, & click on “2015 OOCCL Neighborhood Grant Application”

Thank you.

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The 1.1 Returns

Posted by    |    April 22nd, 2015 at 4:59 pm

The much-loved-yet-slightly-torturous 1.1 will once again kick off Brew Riot! Put your body through its paces with 3 beer stops along the 1.1 mile route, and celebrate by being the first to crash the gates at Brew Riot!

10295518_10152427184884441_816380508383567915_o

The run starts at Nova, located at 1417 W Davis St., and includes mandatory beer breaks at The Kessler and Bolsa before rushing the gates of the best homebrew competition in North Texas! (check-in for runners is at Nova, as well! You do not need to come to Bishop Arts first!)

Once at the finish line, you’ll be clear to pass the lines of those unwilling to take the 1.1 challenge and be the first to enter Brew Riot! That’s right- your 1.1 registration includes tasting wristband for Brew Riot! Once you check in at Nova, you’re good to go for both the 1.1 and Brew Riot– no waiting at the gate in Bishop Arts!

Registration for the 1.1 is only available online and ends on May 16th or when the event sells out, whichever comes first! No onsite registration is available. Your registration includes:

  • Registration and beers on the 1.1 mile run route for 1 adult
  • Annual membership in the Texas Homebrew Society for 1 adult (this includes your Brew Riot admission)
  • The 1.1 sticker
  • No waiting at the gate for Brew Riot!

As with all good things in life, you must be 21 years of age to participate. Bring your ID. No ID, no entry, no exceptions.

1529988_10152427191624441_7305450686851627525_oMany thanks to Nova, The Kessler, and Bolsa for hosting the 1.1 runners!

 

If you have already joined the Texas Homebrew Society for 2015 and would like to add the 1.1 Beer Run, visit this link. Enter promo code homebrew15 and sign up online before May 16th. Make sure your name on the 1.1 registration matches the name of the Texas Homebrew Society membership card exactly! 

After more than half a century, the streetcar is back in Oak Cliff!

Posted by    |    April 13th, 2015 at 2:57 pm

streetcar1

It’s hard to believe that this day has officially arrived! At 8:40AM, a handful of dignitaries, engineers, city staff, and DART officials met at Union Station in Downtown Dallas to ride the streetcar back to Oak Cliff. I sat beside my close friends and mentors, Luis and Sylvia Salcedo, who were my teammates in helping bring the streetcar to life starting all the way back in 2005. Crossing the bridge was surreal, and at one point I stopped to look over at Sylvia who started crying…

We did it!

It was a “pipe dream” that didn’t stand a chance, but for some reason, the stars aligned and 59 years after its last run, our community (originally built as a streetcar suburb) is now seeing the trolley again.

There are countless numbers of people to thank for helping bring this back, and there’s still a lot of work to be done to make this a strong, and viable form of transportation for our neighborhood, but this is the beginning and the hardest part. Our advisor on the project was a man named Rick Gustafson, the father of Portland’s streetcar line. He was the one that told us from the beginning “you have to get a stake in the ground…the first few miles won’t make any sense, but the momentum will build and slowly the network will take shape.”

 

Oak_Cliff_Transit_Authority_2008_A

Our original Oak Cliff Transit Authority team in August 2007.

And he was right. Though the operational schedule is not ideal, and the existing connection covers a portion of what’s needed, the thing that most don’t see is that this phase 1 was the hard and most expensive part. But it gets us the key ingredients: two streetcars, a trolley barn, initial connections into Union Station, the vital one mile link across the Houston Viaduct, and now with phase 2 (funded by money allocated from Congresswoman Edie Bernice Johnson), that stake in the ground is getting us deeper into the neighborhood with with stops to Bishop Arts set for January. Was it expensive? Yes…but no more than the cost of a single highway on-ramp. And what do we get in comparison to other similarly expensive transportation projects like highway ramps, ornate bridges, or multiple bus lines? We get a mode that developers actually build differently for (read: McKinney Avenue Trolley), that justifies smarter densities, and creates a strong option that gets us around the “parking problem” that our historic buildings have suffered from since the streetcars removal.

As we speak, properties along the length of the streetcar line (existing and proposed), have been in high demand with Dallas County selling off its properties to allow for redevelopment, Oak Farms Dairy selling for denser urban development, and numerous other properties now in transition from brownfields to mixed-use development. I’m confident there hasn’t been a bus line or arterial road created in the last 50 years in Dallas thats triggered nearly as much walkable development as we’re now seeing in Oak Cliff in response to the streetcar’s arrival.  Had we continued with our car-only infrastructure projects we would have maintained our path of sprawling suburban oriented development. The streetcar has been the single most powerful tool for extending the success we see in places like the Bishop Arts District, and Jefferson Boulevard.

The next step is to truly re-stitch our neighborhoods so that our two-car families can become one-car families, saving income while helping alleviate the issues we currently have of trying to cram too many cars into a neighborhood that was built for trolleys. The example I like to give is the Texas Theatre…a building with 660 seats, but 35 parking spaces. The only way to make this space make sense now is to tear down adjacent historic buildings to create parking lots (like what we see at Charco Broiler or the Fiesta grocery store on Jefferson which tore down historically lined street buildings to create a giant sea of parking), but that “remedy” is what makes the area no longer walkable and creates an environment that resembles the suburbs.

There’s far more that needs to be done like reconnecting Jefferson Boulevard, and getting deeper into Downtown Dallas, but for now we have our stake in the ground. It’s a great day for Dallas, and an even greater day for Oak Cliff.

 

 

After half a century the Streetcar is back!

Posted by    |    April 13th, 2015 at 2:06 pm

streetcar1

It’s hard to believe that this day has officially arrived! At 8:40AM, a handful of dignitaries, engineers, city staff, and DART officials met at Union Station in Downtown Dallas to ride the streetcar back to Oak Cliff. I sat beside my close friends and mentors, Luis and Sylvia Salcedo, who were my teammates in helping bring the streetcar to life starting all the way back in 2005. Crossing the bridge was surreal, and at one point I stopped to look over at Sylvia who started crying…

We did it!

It was a “pipe dream” that didn’t stand a chance, but for some reason, the stars aligned and 59 years after its last run, our community (originally built as a streetcar suburb) is now seeing the trolley again.

There are countless numbers of people to thank for helping bring this back, and there’s still a lot of work to be done to make this a strong, and viable form of transportation for our neighborhood, but this is the beginning and the hardest part. Our advisor on the project was a man named Rick Gustafson, the father of Portland’s streetcar line. He was the one that told us from the beginning “you have to get a stake in the ground…the first few miles won’t make any sense, but the momentum will build and slowly the network will take shape.”

 

Oak_Cliff_Transit_Authority_2008_A
Our original Oak Cliff Transit Authority team in August 2007.

And he was right. Though the operational schedule is not ideal, and the existing connection covers a portion of what’s needed, the thing that most don’t see is that this phase 1 was the hard and most expensive part. But it gets us the key ingredients: two streetcars, a trolley barn, initial connections into Union Station, the vital one mile link across the Houston Viaduct, and now with phase 2 (funded by money allocated from Congresswoman Edie Bernice Johnson), that stake in the ground is now getting us deeper into the neighborhood with with stops to Bishop Arts set for January. Was is it expensive? Yes…but no more than the cost of a single highway on-ramp. And what do we get in comparison to other similarly expensive transportation projects like highway ramps, ornate bridges, or multiple bus lines? We get a mode that developers actually build differently for (read: McKinney Avenue Trolley), that justifies smarter densities, and creates a strong option that gets us around the “parking problem” that our historic buildings have suffered from since the streetcars removal.

As we speak, properties along the length of the streetcar line (existing and proposed), have been in high demand with Dallas County selling off its properties to allow for redevelopment, Oak Farms Dairy selling for denser urban development, and numerous other properties now in transition from brownfields to mixed-use development. I’m confident there hasn’t been a bus line or arterial road created in the last 50 years in Dallas thats triggered nearly as much walkable development as we’re now seeing in Oak Cliff in response to the streetcar’s arrival.  Had we continued with our car-only infrastructure projects we would have maintained our path of sprawling suburban oriented development. The streetcar has been the single most powerful tool for extending the success we see in places like the Bishop Arts District, and Jefferson Boulevard.

The next step is to truly re-stitch our neighborhoods so that our two-car families can become one-car families, saving income while helping alleviate the issues we currently have of trying to cram too many cars into a neighborhood that was built for trolleys. The example I like to give is the Texas Theatre…a building with 660 seats, but 35 parking spaces. The only way to make this space make sense now is to tear down adjacent historic buildings to create parking lots (like what we see at Charco Broiler or the Fiesta grocery store on Jefferson which tore down historically line street buildings to create a giant sea of parking), but that “remedy” is what makes the area no longer walkable and creates an environment that resembles the suburbs.

There’s far more that needs to be done like reconnecting Jefferson Boulevard, and getting deeper into Downtown Dallas, but for now we have our stake in the ground. It’s a great day for Dallas, and an even greater day for Oak Cliff.

 

 

Public Meeting Tonight! Tyler-Polk Two Way Conversion and Bicycle Lanes

Posted by    |    April 7th, 2015 at 10:26 am

We need a load of people on bicycles to attend a thoroughfare amendment plan meeting to notify the public about converting Tyler-Polk from Canty to Pembroke Ave BACK to two-ways and adding bicycle infrastructure to Polk St.

Ride you bicycles and bring a friend!

CITY OF DALLAS

NOTICE OF PUBLIC MEETING

TYLER STREET AND POLK STREET

from Canty Street to Pembroke Avenue

PROPOSED THOROUGHFARE PLAN AMENDMENTS

Your input is requested at a community stakeholder meeting on April 7,

2015. This meeting will allow you to provide input on the proposed

thoroughfare plan amendments which include converting Tyler Street and

Polk Street from one-way to two-way roadways. The proposed design for

Tyler Street is two travel lanes in each direction and the proposed design

for Polk Street is one travel lane and a directional bicycle lane in each

direction. The meeting will be held at:

TECO/Bishop Arts Theatre Center

215 South Tyler Street

6:00 p.m. Open House

6:30 Presentation

Dallas, TX 75208

**Overflow Parking will be available at Grace Temple Baptist Church

831 W. Tenth Street Dallas, Texas 75208**

For additional information, please contact Tanya Brooks in the Planning

and Neighborhood Vitality Department at (214) 243-2083 or Lap Trinh in the

Public Works Department at (214) 948-4258.

Jefferson Cycle Track: Traffic Control (while we wait for the streetcar)

Posted by    |    April 2nd, 2015 at 4:17 pm

turnerwinstonoc:

We know how difficult it’s been to deal with the street car construction as bicyclists and drivers (yes, we drive cars too, and pay to build road!)
The city has been very accommodating when we’ve been frustrated at accessing the Jefferson St cycle track during so much change. However, see this post on BikeableDallas.com about new, temporary changes that were just made today to the Oak Cliff entrance/exit of the cycle track to help keep us moving!

Originally posted on BikeableDallas.com:

For the next several weeks, DART will be testing the streetcar vehicles on the new streetcar tracks on the Houston viaduct, Zang Blvd, and Colorado Blvd. Vehicle traffic on Jefferson is being diverted to Marsalis, but the cycle track is still open to bikes. In fact, you may like it more now than ever, since there is a stretch next to Founders Park that will (for now) be open only to bicycles.

We just spent an hour and a half out there with the contractor and other Public Works engineers setting up the temporary traffic control for bicycles to access the cycle track and it should work pretty well until they’re done testing the streetcar.

The cycle track is free of barricades now and signage pointing to the median hop-over has been removed.

20150402_145008 Cycle track looking north to the viaduct

We moved the water-filled traffic barricades around. (Well… not really “we”… I was…

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