Where's that Trinity Trail Council Approved a Year Ago? Still Buried Under City Hall's Big Lie.

Categories: Schutze

From 1998 when the Trinity River Project was first presented to voters as a racially unifying parks project, there has been a tension, to put it very politely, between the promise and the real agenda. As a matter of fact, I don't really use the word tension. I prefer lie.

And the lie doesn't die. Right now we have an important case in point involving trails that the council approved a year ago along the river through downtown to link major trail systems already complete north and south of the downtown stretch.

Last year the mayor joined council members Angela Hunt and Scott Griggs, and together they persuaded the rest of the council to fund the new trail segment through downtown. Once complete, a paved trail linking Dallas' still virtually segregated hemispheres would be the first physical delivery on the promise former Mayor Ron Kirk made 15 years ago of a park to bind the city's divided heart.

That promise has always been and will always be a sales pitch to mask a lie. The real agenda for the Trinity River Project is a semi-private highway to enable lavish redevelopment of land deliberately divided and sealed away from South Dallas -- more of the same, in other words, an ugly past reaching forward to corrupt what should be a better future.

Even though the council voted a year ago to fund the trail, the city manager is not proceeding with it, citing some kind of change she thinks needs to be made. Let me give you my own two-bit theory. The toll road partisans use private entities such as the Trinity Commons and Trinity Trust Foundations to foil and defeat any attempt to turn the riverfront into a real park. The last thing they want is a bunch of beer-drinking citizens down there along the river with their dogs and Frisbees thinking it belongs to them. Instead, the partisans intend to keep the river downtown clean of citizenry so nothing will stand in the way of that road when they finally get a chance to build it.

Look at their record: The upshot of the two big projects the partisans have pulled off -- the Calatrava bridge and the white water feature -- is that the entire river through downtown is now virtually inaccessible to canoeists and kayakers. By building high-concept diversions at both ends of the downtown stretch they have managed to annihilate recreational use between those points.

The Dallas Morning News has a good editorial today about all this, urging the city to proceed with the downtown trail, but it contains a very understated insight that I want to bring up into relief for you. Apparently the News' editorial board has been calling City Manager Mary Suhm and her immediate underlings all week trying to get them to explain why the trail is on hold. No one will call them back.

Now, on the one hand, there is a psychological term that describes the feeling of an alternative press journalist when he finds out that the snooty bastards at the city's only daily can't get a call returned, called Schutzenfreude. On the other hand, I can't avoid pointing out that the refusal of staff to move ahead with an authorized project is the other side of the same coin we saw recently in the fracking-in-the-parks controversy, where staff did go ahead and pursue a deal that the City Council had expressly told them not to pursue.

The staff at City Hall does not work for us, because it does not take its orders from our elected representatives. It takes its orders from the Park Cities. And what might those orders be?

Sell the damned parks to the oil drillers if you have to, just don't raise any taxes that our businesses in Dallas will have to pay. Keep your dirty masses yearning to be free away from our toll road. Let us build our walled plague city in the old Stemmons industrial corridor so that we can continue to live large near our arts district and not to have to look at you.

And under the city manager system, the staff says, "Yessir, yessir and yessir."
What's our role in this? Pay them. Do you see anything amiss here, or am I just a whiner?

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I too have been trying to get a phone call from city hall. I'd like to know what is going on with the wave park. We are coming up on two years since the park was supposed to get a redesign. And a year since construction was supposed to start and ... Well we know the story... No construction, no phone calls, and mean while islands are starting to form behind the second wave diverting the current making the launch area something less than calm,    ... Sylvan still closed . No construction on California crossing, no alternative to Sylvan...


Considering Angela's declaration of riding into the sunset with bridges burning behind, maybe they are waiting until she exits the building???

ThePosterFormerlyKnownasPaul topcommenter

I like the watermark on the graphic : "Preliminary Rendering of Initial Concept. Subject to Change."  It is a good thing that it has been upgraded from: "Initial Preliminary Feasibility Rendering of Unrefined Initial Conceptual Focus Group Acceptance Task Force. Of course it will be changed to suit our hidden agenda."

Why not just go ahead with: "Sucker Bait.  We really have no intention of doing this but we need something to get the masses and agit-props to shut up."


"Border River Gas Wars - Dallas"  the next show coming to A&E!

 It will run in a time segment between two other new shows: "Duck Drilling Dynasty Redneck Wars - Texas", and "Real Housewives' BigFoot Noodling, Arkansas".


...feel like I was at a bar when I got punched out by Dallas city hall before the lights went out...who gets my next jab for the people???


While we're on the subject, who is it that wants to buy the Frank Crowley Courts Building/land, initiating debate about building a new County courts building?


and the waves something less than ideal, designed fro, etc. The e.coli is still high with no signs warning of the potential dangers.


Remember, she actually did support the toll road in the last dog fight election. Glad she finally came around and changed her mind.

JimSX topcommenter

Excellent question.


@JimSX While we're on the subject of questions... is no news good news for JWP? Is anything developing or is the story dying a slow, painless, death?

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