Tom Leppert, Jeff Morris And The $500,000 Model

Tom Leppert’s having none of Jim Schutze’s negativism. At a private wingding last night to unveil the $500,000 Trinity River Corridor Project model, the Dallas mayor (at left) dismissed the Observer writer’s latest column, which basically says the project’s a big mess that’s going down in flames. “Teddy Roosevelt used to say there are a couple of different types of people,” Leppert said. “The people that take risks and get things done, and the people who criticize them.” Leppert, a former construction exec, said the Trinity is facing the usual delays and regulatory hurdles–“nothing out of the ordinary”–just like all the big projects he’s handled. A little earlier Jeff Morris of Alon USA, which paid for the Trinity miniature, said it happened thanks to fundraising maestro Bill Lively. “Bill Lively taught me that you’ve got to have a model to raise money,” Morris said with a laugh. Yeah, but … don’t a lot of designers throw in the “model” for free?


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15 responses to “Tom Leppert, Jeff Morris And The $500,000 Model”

  1. Tim Rogers says:

    At that gig last last night, Glenn, Bill Lively said, “Okay, you guys win the model war.” There are models, and then there’s this model. Something on this scale, with this detail, with these methods has never been done before. Which is why Charles Kendrick won’t say exactly how he did it. There are only a handful of model makers in the world who operate on this level.

    So who cares if it cost $500,000? I mean, besides Alon USA?

  2. Chris says:

    wait a sec…

    “you’ve got to have a model to raise money”

    I remember a large bond election to pay for this, and then the City saying that all the money is already there….


  3. Gwyon says:

    This is shaping up to be pretty amusing.

  4. Glenn Hunter says:

    BTW, Leppert last night gave the model’s price as $500,000; Morris put it “closer to $600,000.” So, let’s call it at least a half-a-million bucks … but who’s counting?

  5. Nathan says:

    I’d like to see one of our local media outlets catalog the various monies, past, present, and future, going into this project according to their source (feds, private money, muni bonds, ect.) and what they are spent on (flood control, parks, roads, ect.). What do you say D Magazine, DMN, Observer?

  6. DM says:

    Can’t. Keep. Up. With. All. The. Trinity. Model. Threads… must.. work…

  7. Bethany says:

    I think designers only throw in the model for free if you’re like Mick Jagger or something.

  8. Richard says:

    I will 2nd Nathan’s idea. Seems simple enough to do that. Won’t happen though.

  9. Wes Mantooth says:

    I used to build model airplanes as a kid. I bet I could come up with one hell of a model of ANYTHING if you paid me $600,000.00. Jeez.

  10. John M says:

    How long until someone breaks into the model and pours a big bucket of water into the Trinity River?

  11. towski says:

    If the model is so incredibly detailed, couldn’t we use it to find out if the Trinity Project will flood downtown?

  12. dan says:

    How about we hold the praise for this model until it’s actually finished? What’s with the unfinished roads? Where are the levees? Half a million for that? Sorry, I must be ignorant to think it’s not good enough.

  13. Is a half a million dollar model really completely 100 percent necessary? Since the TRP is never gonna happen anyway couldn’t we have helped feed homeless instead -or at least fix the plumbing at the Cotton Bowl?