City and Museum of the American Railroad Inch Closer to Derailing That Lawsuit

MAR_Depot_at_Night_Jan_23_2011.jpg
Via.
The boy and I swung by Fair Park Sunday, and on our way out we drove past the Museum of the American Railroad. Which reminded me: The museum and the city of Dallas, which sued to get those trains chugga-chugga'd to Frisco back in January 2010, were set to go to trial ... let's see ... why, at the end of June, matter of fact. But it was my understanding that the May 31 groundbreaking in Frisco, first announced mid-May, had pushed back the litigation just a bit. And, sure enough: When I went to look at the case file earlier today, Judge Martin Hoffman has prepared a notice of intent to dismiss.

Come September 12, all things go according to plan, this case will just disappear. How the heck did that happen?

"Well," says museum attorney William Brotherton, "we had another mediation, the attorneys put together a proposed settlement agreement, the board of trustees for the museum approved it, and we're just waiting for the city council to approve it."

That's the Dallas City Council, which is on summer break and won't meet again till August, at which point city attorneys will more than likely take the council behind closed doors to spell out the settlement agreement. Till then, Brotherton says, he can't say anything about what's contained therein, except to say settling the suit "just made sense for both parties. It's a fair deal to both sides."

I asked: So, when's the moving date to Frisco?

Brotherton says, sorry, he can't say yet.

"It's in the settlement agreement," he explains. "But until that's all made good, we'll just have to keep it confidential for now."
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8 comments
Mistarobato
Mistarobato

The museum has spoken with forked tongue so many times I've lost count. So let's look at the facts. They did a minimal amount of dirt work at Frisco back in May, nothing sense. They said that if the trains were not gone by August 1st, the city could have them. And they said last year that they would be kicking off a major public fund raising campaign, which I have yet to hear one word.

The city needs to seize the trains and the land and give LaPrelle the boot. Enough is enough.

dallasmay
dallasmay

Whatever happened to "If we're not out by next August, Dallas can just keep the trains!"

Jim Bob Guthrie
Jim Bob Guthrie

I think the museum is pretty cool.  But I had never heard of it until the lawsuit!   It is going to cost a fortune to move those trains to Frisco.   I don't see how a defunct company could afford to do that, if they can't pay the rent to Fair Park.

Nose2Much
Nose2Much

The City kept saying they were just going to keep the trains if the Museum was not out by a certain date.  The Museum never agreed nor even said Dallas could have the trains in jest.

Nose2Much
Nose2Much

Jim Bob, going back to 1947 there was never any rent charged to the Museum of the American Railroad.  This is consistent with how all of the other museums at Fair Park are treated.  The Museum told the City that they could not afford the outrageous and egregious bond being asked to secure move out by a date that the Museum told the City they could not meet.  The Museum has never been defunct but the money dedicated to the move had been insufficient until a recent fundraising effort and some special financing fell together.  Enjoy the trains and experience the expanded site in Frisco when the move is complete.

dallasmay
dallasmay

No, actually that was a quote from the Museum's CEO last year.

dallasmay
dallasmay

http://blogs.dallasobserver.co...

"The museum had hoped to maintain "status quo" till this is sorted out. And it offered several times during today's hearing to sign a contract that has August 1, 2011, as a "drop-dead date" for its leaving Fair Park. If it's not gone after that, said Brotherton, the city was more than welcome to seize the 37 trains at the museum and sell them on eBay."

Nose2Much
Nose2Much

No, the Museum's CEO said the City wanted to keep the trains if the Museum did not meet an unrealistic move out date.  The Museum never considered or would have agreed to the City keeping something they wanted to sell for scrap.  This collection is recognized as one of the nine best railroad collections in the US.

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