Add the conservative think tank the Manhattan Institute to the list of influential organizations that believe Dallas needs to tear down I-345. In a newly published report, the Manhattan Institute names 10 infrastructure projects across the country that “deserve a green light,” including the removal of the elevated freeway splitting downtown and Deep Ellum. From the report:
What: Demolition of 1.3 miles of urban freeway in central Dallas, to be replaced with a surface boulevard
Why: Downtown Dallas, about 1.5 square miles, is circumscribed by a five-mile freeway loop that consumes large amounts of valuable real estate and makes pedestrian access to downtown unpleasant. Though primarily a commercial area, the downtown has seen substantial residential growth. Areas immediately beyond I-345, the northeast section of the freeway loop, have also experienced substantial resi- dential growth and revitalization. The demolition of I-345 would connect these two growing neighborhoods and also free up 245 acres of downtown land for high-density, taxpaying development. The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) estimated an increased land value of $2.5 billion from removal, a minimum of $1 billion greater than any other studied scenario.
Price: TxDOT estimates the price as ranging between $100 million and $500 million.
Status: The Dallas city council and TxDOT are both studying the impact of removing the freeway.
Justification: The existing infrastructure is obsolete.
There you have it. Out with the obsolete.