The walls of the cafe building are also making progress now that the foundation and canopy structure are up.
Based on your pictures above it looks like they may be marking out the foundations for the led lighted pavilions that will rise on the side facing Main Street.
I wonder when we will hear of a Grand Opening event planned for the park. That will most likely include a concert and all kinds of fun things.
The walls of the cafe building are also making progress now that the foundation and canopy structure are up.
Just some quick Downtown Parks and Plaza's observations.
The Dallas Historical Plaza with the founders cabin still has no benches or any seating at all, but the multicolored lights for the fountain look cool at night. It seems like the Historical plaza needs an event where a large number of cafe style and tables and chairs are added temporarily as some kind of outside lunch event. There's enough room to pull off something but I believe it would take a inspired enthusiastic group ready to put on some kind of enjoy Downtown outside today event.
Dealy Plaza looks great where they stripped the old white paint off the architectural elements and re-painted. It really looks clean and crisp but the fountains are not yet in operation again yet. I guess they are still working on upgrading the pipes. I did not notice if the side monuments on the far side of Dealy Plaza have been redone as well but as long as its all gets this kind of renovation Dealy Plaza will look a lot better. Now we just need them to clean up that bridge.
There are many little plazas around downtown that are in various realms of falling back into the earth course not all are owned by the city so its hard to force someone else to fix or update their own property. Lets hope that Downtown Dallas the organization will for what ever reason get on this at some point.
I would say the new black benches installed in various areas all over downtown are nice and I hope people get a chance to appreciate the new seating options even the homeless.
I would call the older part of the Arts District out cause have you been and seen the decorative pylons they built decades ago near the current museums on the Ross Avenue side. The design is fine but they have a built in lighted sign area for way finding maps and other advertising potential posters and so far none of them seem to be in any good condition. Some still have maps just curled up inside and at night the lights come on but since the maps are all weathered and falling apart it looks like we forgot they exist, which we did.
They are only four in total so whats the problem maintaining them. It seems like to me if they would update them with LED lighting at the tops instead of the current white lights they would be considered modern enough to build more at the many other entrances to the Grand Dallas Arts District http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&sour...64593301435419
Check out this Google Map i created of Public Art and Architecture. I opened it up so if anyone can add to it please do. The idea behind this is a resource for people to map out a tour of Dallas where Dallas is the museum. Might be the basis of a great Saturday/Sunday Bike Ride or just a walking tour for someone staying downtown visiting Dallas.
I was able to find some great details on some works but others I am completely at a loss for.
Take a look.
I think you forgot to call it the fake founders cabin. Some of you may remember this banner that a home owner at 509 elm hung out his window after they returned the fake historic cabin.Originally Posted by cowboyeagle05
I can recall there being historical facades included in the Main Street Garden facing main. Have they scratched the idea?
If you look back around post #315 in this thread you'll see that those historical buildings are long gone with the block's demolition last year. I think preserving the façades would have made for an interesting streetscape, but the city decided they were in the way.Originally Posted by smudoode
Here's a before photo from one poster pre-demolition.
I dont see what is so historic about those buildings. good ridance to me.
Dallas Gateway Park:
Plans released for Dallas' new Gateway Forest Park
06:33 PM CDT on Tuesday, April 7, 2009
By DAVID FLICK / The Dallas Morning News
Plans for a seven-acre forest at the northeast tip of downtown are being unveiled today, a project that backers say will connect the new Arts District with uptown Dallas — and help city residents connect with each other.
“We’re creating a gateway to downtown that’s environmentally friendly and people friendly,” said Janette Monear, executive director of the Texas Tree Foundation, which is coordinating the renovation. “It’s going to be a great amenity for everyone in that area of the city.”
Fundraising will begin soon for the privately funded $3 million project. Once funded, the expanse of trees, pedestrian walkways, amphitheater and dog park would take about a year to build, Monear said. Supporters are hoping for a 2011 opening.
The project represents a do-over for that space.
In 2004, the tree foundation, in collaboration with the Texas Department of Transportation, planted 1,100 bald cypresses near the intersection of Central Expressway and Woodall Rodgers Freeway. A misunderstanding over who was responsible for watering the trees led the death of most of them by last year.
Monear said supporters have learned from their mistakes.
Besides making sure that responsibility for maintenance is clear — although she said it is still being worked out — the forest will be more park-like.
The design by Lambert Landscape Co. calls for lighting, signage and easier access for police that should make the area safer. The trees will also be native broad leafs, rather than the ill-fated cypresses.
“It’s a space where you can sit down and contemplate,” Monear said.
Or at least contemplate as best you can with two of the city’s busiest expressways soaring overhead.
“It is noisy,” Monear acknowledged. “It’s not like being in the middle of the forest, but it is a forest in the middle of the city.”
The park should benefit from its proximity to the Arts District and to the shops and residences at One Arts Plaza. And the trees should help refresh the air and mitigate the traffic noise.
“It’s all about connectivity. We’re connecting areas of the city and, especially with the dog park, we’ll be connecting people to each other,” Monear said.
“We’ve taken a lemon and we’ve made lemonade.”
This park is going to be an excellent addition to DT, and hopefully will create a nice connection between Uptown, Ross Avenue Corridor Area, and Arts District.
A wise man speaks because he has something to say; a fool because he has to say something. - Plato
I don't mean to say this park isn't a good idea, but we should be real about it.
Here's a prediction. The park on top of the freeway will be more popular than the park under it.
The Gus's BBQ place was in a 115 year old building and was the second oldest original building in downtown. It pre-dated old City Hall. The business inside had been in operation since 1902. Changed hands to new owners only a handful of times. It was most recently run by a Greek, who owned it 30 years or so. Menu had not changed since 1902.Originally Posted by Double Wide
Both of the parking garages, one for the Hilton, the other for the Cokesbury Bookstore were Valet Only. If you had ever driven them you could easily see not many people could ever drive the steep approaches.
The park will become nothing more than a hangout for vagrants. It's been a dream of the homeless for years to have a place to call their own. Now they have it.
Regarding the Forrest Gateway park proposal. I heard a comment about how noisy it would be... I was just thinking when i have been under these bridges a lot of the noise seems to be mechanical noise of the actual bridge.... I just wonder if they could spray something to dampen the noise under the overpasses... or insulate them in some way... That would also help protect the users of the park from the radiant heat coming from the concrete at night in summer.
Originally Posted by CasperITL
Oh don't be so confident they don't have it yet its not finished construction yet. Who knows maybe Obama will save all the homeless from themselves in all the wonder that some seem to have for the man.
Sure homeless will be an issue but the city is aware and so is "DOWNTOWNDALLAS" the ones who write the big checks for the increased security in Downtown Dallas. Believe me they want this park to be a lightning rod to show off Downtown and they will stop at nothing to keep things as clean and shinny as possible to reel in more corporate Headquarters and their money into their coffers.
The advantages of having several corporate headquarters in Downtown is the large amount of money those corporations provide to "DOWNTOWNDALLAS" to make sure things stay as they want them to be.
That would suck. It could totally happen at some point, but seems very unlikely during the first couple of years of the park's existence.Originally Posted by CasperITL
Originally Posted by incrediculous
Did you do that overlay?
Thanks for posting it though so we can better understand the weight of a highway over a park. I agree with others though while this will not be the "greatest park ever" I think its a great use for the land other than whats it's currently being used for. A dog park under a highway is fine with trees a little better and using it to connect districts is even better.
I would like to see a park or use for some somewhat barren land near downtown that plays off the rolling prairies theme more with xeriscape natural plantings. No I don't mean someone's lawn thats over grown. Garland converted some of its concrete islands within intersections to xeriscape plantings and they look good all year around cause it uses plants use to the dry/wet environment we have. No its not full of cactus plants either.
lol. I love that remark.Originally Posted by torycronin
Best of luck to them, and I'm sure it will look better, but not sure how many people ever want to "contemplate" with the clang and bang of 18-wheelers soaring overhead. Are there any examples of successful developments beneath overhead expressways....besides parking..... anything we can learn from past efforts?
And I'll rather see it be a park than parking. That plot is in such an odd location there's not much that can be done with it commerical wise, so adding more greenspace to DTD is a great use. The dogpark is huge plus too. I love going to the other DTD dog park on Canton...and I don't even have a dog.
This is a good idea. We have so much wasted space with the elevated highways. It'd be nice if we could find some use for all of it instead of it being a wasteland or ad hoc homeless shelter. It seems like it could be used for all kinds of recreation space. Just as an example, I think if we could get a basketball court or two set up over near the Canton dog park, it could build on the neighborhood meeting spot there.
Consumers are not [the same as] citizens, and when a system pretends that they are, peculiar and even perverse things happen to decision making and democracy... - Benjamin Barber
nice park. Lets remember to water it this time.
Worst location for the park, ever! Good luck crossing the service roads (3 lanes on the north side, 2 lanes on the south side), with the cars zooming by at 50+ mph. With Griggs Park and the upcoming Woodall Rodgers Park within sight, I don’t see why would anybody want to go here.
Sorry to be a downer, but in my opinion, I’d rather go to a more accessible and quieter park than this. And I live, literally, across the street…
Also, I’m sure the air in this park is not going to be the freshest in town…
Do I spy a road with parking spaces running up the middle?
Thanks. I did the overlay to satisfy my own curiosity, trying to place this park in reality. I don't know that it's a good idea to spend $3 million on a park under a freeway. Why would this cost so much money, anyway? It sounds over-programmed. An amphitheater under a free way. Who are we kidding?Originally Posted by cowboyeagle05
I'm rambling a bit here, but I think the best parks, are the expansive nature city parks you can get lost in. Like Vancouver's Stanley Park, or Central Park. I guess White Rock Lake is the closest Dallas has to those. The Trinity River basin doesn't count, because it's practically inaccessible.
Chicago doesn't have it either. Grant Park is huge, but terribly over programmed and marred by Lake Shore Drive. It's hard to get away from it all here.
Vancouver is really amazing, with Stanley Park and Grouse Mountain. Hopefully Dallas will have that someday in the Trinity River.
Last edited by incrediculous; 09 April 2009 at 12:59 AM.
That Buffalo Bayou or Creek Park trail in Houston that goes underneath the freeway is actually kinda nice. Though not many people hang there (or at least on the Saturday that I went).
Tighten the female dog!
Yup, looks like a nice shortcut for me as I'll be driving home from the Griggs ParkOriginally Posted by NThomas
I agree the amphitheater is a little much yes but I think the Dog Park is an excellent use for this property. Dogs are really really popular with Urban dwellers today and to have a good place for residents to take them is a lot better than those sculpture parks that residents tend to take their dogs in Downtown that are private property in some cases. As for the money this is not a city park per say nor will it be built by the city so if they can raise the money I have no issue considering they will be required to come up with maintenance plan and budget.Originally Posted by incrediculous
The Woodall Park is going to be managed by the foundation and maintained by the foundation. This looks like to me an attempt at proceeding with the rest of the Downtown Parks plan developed half a decade ago by the city. Remember that study suggested gateway parks underneath all the elevated highways on currently under utilized land while adding several distinctive parks in the city center. I like this idea of foundations building all these parks rather than the city trying to do them all. It allows for a neighborhood or other local group to display their own enthusiasm for such amenities which ultimately increases the chances the park will get used.
As for the road I'm sure it will be less than drivable at any speed above 15mph they are not stupid. Probably be a packed dirt road with road bumps to slow anyone down.
Good point. I forgot this was a private, neighborhood endeavor. Kinda feel bad for critiquing it. But they really should re-think that amphitheater idea.
Dog parks and trees are the way to go. Maybe if the tree canopy is thick enough, the freeway won't matter!
Let's just replant the trees and turn on the water to get them growing. If you want to put down a walking path, I see no problem with that. However, there are too many cars connecting or exiting at grade level from / or to 45, 75, Ross Ave, and Woodall rogers. Not a good place to have people/ kids/ dogs trying to cross the street with all the high speed traffic to get to a dog park. The one b/w Deep Ellum and downtown works because you do not have all the exit and on ramps, and do have sidewalks that are easy to navigate.
Last edited by slfunk; 09 April 2009 at 01:24 PM.
Maybe this will be Dallas' own Riverside Park
Originally Posted by NThomas
Here's an idea for the park: use the big white wall on the former library building to project movies on in the summer. Since that end of Main Street Garden will mostly be lawn I think it would work really well.
If they did that they would have to use one of those inflatable movie screens. That big white wall would not work very well at all for projecting movies on to for consecutive viewing. If you do not provide the right surface for the projection the eyes start to hurt during the movie.
But maybe the city will apply for the rights to do such a thing or another organization will sponsor such events. Considering when they designed Main Street Gardens they studied numerous parks and the activities held within those parks. They are well aware of the movies under the stars concepts.
Bryant Park being one the most obvious example:
Has anyone noticed the area where the Gateway Forest Park is supposed to be located? You may recall that most of the trees that were planted by TxDOT (for the previous urban forest project) were supposed to be dead from lack of water. Actually, after spring rains, most of the trees appear to be very much alive... most of them have sprouted leaves and appear to be thriving...
Yes, I was just noticing the same thing yesterday.Originally Posted by BigD5349
3:1 still nobody waters them and they "die" again this summer.
Since we are trying to be a green building and only irrigate with our huge rainwater tanks, we have a type of tree that looks great with water, but somehow shuts down during winter and dry times. Several times we thought they had died, but the landscaper rightly assured us they'd be back. I wonder if TxDOT has planted something similar.
Isn't this a really odd, inaccessible location for a "grand entrance" style park? One doesn't really pass through this area when driving into downtown, so for it to function as a gateway is a little bit of a misnomer. Don't get me wrong, I like the design, and the more parks in downtown the better. I'm just curious as to what exactly it's a gateway from?
They look great! The foundation, or the city, should dump water on these beauties all summer long. It really would be a forest in no time. No need for multi-million dollar park improvements, amphitheaters and dog parks.
If anything just cut a trail through the middle with some branches and add a couple benches, trashcans, and soft streetlights on the pathway.Originally Posted by incrediculous
Sounds perfect but you know they will cut down most of those trees to lay concrete.Originally Posted by NThomas
Well since this project is not controlled by the city we don't really have an option to say what goes there. The Organization is fitting the bill for this new pedestrian gateway so I think we are just gonna have to deal with what they decide to build there. They probably talked to One Arts Center about this project so that's probably more reason its very elaborate compared to a simple trail. After all this is near the Arts District where everything is being built to be the "best" in the world compared with just what works effectively. They will have to pay the bills on maintaining it so its up to them.
All those trees will be transplanted somewhere.Originally Posted by Tnekster
Drove by Main Street Gardens today --- They are moving along... they have the little 'reading rooms" or what ever they are on the Main street side of the park.... The Cafe is about the same state as last week... lots more concrete work around the edges of the park.
Last Tuesday, I parked in One Arts and walked along the Texas turnaround from the eastbound Woodall Rodgers service road to the westbound service road parallel to I-345 and I probably counted close to 20 homeless under the underpasses.
My only concern for the proposed gateway park is how low the overpasses are sooooo low in some parts. With Julius Schepps Park and the Dallas Bark Park, the elevated I-345 isn't that big of a distraction, but with 5 elevated ramps, after actually walking around it, I don't know what the parks department could do to make the gateway park not seem like it's under a sea of freeway ramps.
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