I think this will have a great impact on the area in the way of foot traffic and making it look and feel more urban. I know it's not popular in the neighborhood, but I give the developers credit for pushing through with a project that will be huge for the Southside.
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It's not my favorite building in town, but I can really respect it for what it is and what it was when it was built - a replacement for a very dated facility that was destroyed in the tornado and a modern breath of fresh air in an era when so much of what had been built in and what was proposed for downtown came from the Schwartz camp. It really is beautifully laid out against the skyline on an approach from the west and I love watching it come into view as you traverse Belknap from the east. The lighting package has changed a great deal from the original, but I'll never forget its presence on a foggy or cloudy night in those first few years.
I watched the Landmark implosion from just south of Morton and 10th next to city hall. The bridge implosion happened around 10:00 at night and, from 12 miles away as the crow flies, it sounded like it was happening in my backyard.
A great compilation of Westchester footage with some taken from drones:
It's been awhile, but I've heard stories of the police department buying vehicles just because the CCPD funds were available and storing them for years because there wasn't any general fund money available to outfit them for police work and maintain them.
The Council should ask the CCPD board to take a hard look at this.
How on earth do some flowers and trees and grass rack up $15M in maintenance?
I'm assume you're joking and I haven't had a chance to dig any deeper, but I'm guessing the deferred maintenance involves infrastructure and not routine maintenance. Given that the conservatory is in such bad shape that it's not usable, that's likely where the problem starts. Again, where's the accountability in letting it get that bad?
I'd hate to see an admission fee, especially one as high as $12 for adults and $8 for children. This would simply make the gardens inaccessible for many families.
I was a little taken aback by the fee starting that high, but it's in line with other cultural facilities around town (do a little research, it's eerily similar to one nearby) and likely in line with what they need to get a handle on the negligent maintenance issue.
I'd rather pay an additional $1/mo on my property tax or water bills.
I'm on my city's parks board and we have a similar donation option. It was great when every household was automatically enrolled and there was an opt out option. That was eventually determined to be illegal, so everyone was removed and it became an opt in option. The education process to get people to opt in is grueling and it's taken years to get it back up to even a third of households being enrolled.
Soliciting pledges from locals that support the other cultural institutions in town would be great, but the only way it would work would be to completely turn management over to a private non-profit and get things as far out from under the city bureaucracy as possible. Think about it: would you give the city any more of your money given their track record?
This is the Crockett/Norwood/Morton/University block. It's the same developer, so I didn't expect much different in the way of design. I believe the first floor is the location of FOODHALL - similar to Legacy Food Hall in Plano, a food court with local restaurants (and some Dallas restaurant spin offs that I'm sure people will find a way to bitch about), indoor/outdoor seating, live music. Sort of the next evolution of the food truck park fad. Somebody mentioned it earlier in the thread, but I'm sure this is going to make the ongoing parking issues even more interesting.
Task force considering revenue opportunities for the gardens, including an admission charge
Most troubling info in that article is the $15 million in repairs they've been sitting on. Accountability is just another word in the dictionary for the CoFW.
Didn't really find another topic to put this in. $101 million facility paid for with CCPD funds was supposed to be a cash cow by providing other cities with a training facility. Nearly 3 years in and the fire department has brought in $35,000 in rentals and the police department has brought in nothing because they only recently created a fee schedule. On top of that, both departments have been allowing other cities to use the facility free of charge.
Bud Kennedy had a good write-up on the building today: