Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Trinity River Project: Let's Build Up, Not Tear Down

The Wall Street Journal, Saturday December 13, 2008, ran, "A Street Named by Public Desire Causes Political Gridlock in Dallas," by Ana Campoy. The article describes how the City of Dallas wanted to rename Industrial Blvd as part of the Trinity River Project. The plan is to build an attractive bridge over the Trinity River, create a park, and develop adjacent commercial property. You can see illustrations on the website of the Trinity River Corridor Project.

But someone made the mistake of saying, "let's have a public vote on a new name." They wanted a name related to the Trinity River Project, but they failed to specify that requirement and were blind-sided by a Hispanic agitator who wanted the street named after Cesar Chavez, who has no connection to Dallas.

With low interest in voting for renaming a street, the agitator worked hard and got 52% of the vote for renaming the street after Chavez. This name had nothing to do with the Trinity River Project and made a mockery of the plan to put it to a popular vote. The Dallas City Council had to step in and pick Riverfront Boulevard for the new name. The Wall Street Journal reported the agitators started bad-mouthing the Anglo community.

It's a shame to see some members of the Dallas Hispanic community working to embarrass Dallas and stir up racism.

The core idea of the Trinity River Project is great. Dallas needs some signature public works that serve as visual symbols of the city. New York City is loaded with visual symbols that appear frequently in movies; Dallas needs some.

As I mention in my Texas Ascendant blog, the Dallas metroplex needs to strive for greatness. We all need to work together to build up Dallas and Texas.

Robert Canright

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