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Linda McMahon: The Trinity—It’s Time

I have seen a glimpse of Dallas’ future. Last week, professional teams for the Connected City Design Challenge wrapped up their final public presentations. I was inspired by the three visions that integrate nature into our urban setting, create strong districts with distinct characteristics, and connect the river to the city.
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Linda McMahon
Linda McMahon

I have seen a glimpse of Dallas’ future. Last week, professional teams for the Connected City Design Challenge wrapped up their final public presentations. I was inspired by the three visions that integrate nature into our urban setting, create strong districts with distinct characteristics, and connect the river to the city.

A few “aha’ moments:

• The Trinity River levee seems like a mountain when you are standing beside it, but, in fact, the top of the levee is the same elevation as downtown.

• The original Trinity River is alive with wildlife; it’s amazing that such nature is so close to our city.

• The ability to create an urban forest under the freeways holds incredible promise and would totally change our view of freeways and how to knit the downtown area to the river.

The discussion around our freeways transportation needs was important and needs to be further elevated. The majority of traffic coming through downtown on Interstates 35 and 30 are not coming into Dallas but are pass-through traffic. Diverting traffic around the fringe of the city would improve our quality of life, open up more areas for development, and help us meet the challenge  of our growing population.

This is not something that can be accomplished easily or quickly, but should be analyzed and prioritized. Many people want to throw a toll road into the discussion, but the issue is larger than building a toll road within the levees.

I have seen a beautiful vision of Dallas with gleaming buildings, walkable neighborhoods adjacent to workplaces, and nature beautifully integrated. A river connected to our city as planned by our founders could be in our future. It’s time to make some hard decisions about transportation.

Linda McMahon is president of The Real Estate Council. Contact her at [email protected].

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