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Don’t Drive in Downtown Dallas

Downtown is now basically inpenetrable.

This morning I dropped my girlfriend off at her office and then drove to where I’m typing this blog. I can just about see her office from my window. But the trip took 15 frustrating minutes — possibly more; I might have blacked out when the DART bus attempted a three-lane change at a stop — because downtown is essentially surrounded by a moat of street construction. To get from there I had to navigate through three separate, unconnected construction projects, all three being managed not even remotely as efficiently as snack time at a daycare center. And that’s just on the route I was taking. There are no good ways to get into downtown at the moment (believe me, I’ve tried all of them) and no good ways to move around the city once there.

Here is the problem: I hate driving but I have to because our mass transit system isn’t great. It’s too far to walk or else I would try it. And even if it wasn’t too far, the construction issues are worse in that regard, as I believe Matt has covered in great detail in his Dallas Hates Pedestrians series, and as a pretty persistent pedestrian I know all too well. Part of this shows that Dallas is on the come up, or else there wouldn’t be so much construction, right? OK, but it also shows that we still embarrassingly fail to do the absolute bare minimum. And I know it is worse, so much worse, south of downtown.

And the absolute greatest thing about all of this is the streets will still be terrible, maybe even worse, when this is done. Which council member do I need to gripe at?

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