WFAA just ran a quick blurb on today's scheduled Lancaster TIF board meeting with the developers. Everyone grab your knickers and pretend to be shocked: the developers didn't show up. Now looks like a good time for another developer to enter the picture.
This is exciting news. It goes to show what smart reinvestment in the public infrastructure - making it attractive as a place for human beings rather than a traffic sewer - can do for urban real estate.
It's easy to talk about the success of downtown residential growth when you lump in two areas that aren't part of downtown into the article.
Pedantic, maybe, but it bugs me when city people and journalists talk about "downtown growth" and then name things in 7th Street/Cultural District and the Near Southside as evidence for how great downtown is doing. Those aren't downtown - not only do they have their own identities, but they are also physically separated from downtown and when talking about "urban living" and walking around you can't really count them as one place.
Maybe they meant "central city growth," but even somewhat linking something like Museum Place and the Near Southside developments to Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. (an organization which has *nothing* to do with those areas) is not accurate nor fair to groups like Fort Worth South, Inc. who have everything to do with the success of that district.
In fact, there hasn't been a left turn lane on South Main (except in a couple of strategic spots) for years, ever since the city made permanent the guerrilla restriping that myself and other volunteers installed at Arts Goggle years back and removed it from the state highway system. The reconstruction's going to keep that configuration.
The vision for South Main is one of slow, tamed traffic, and a pedestrian-first design. We put things like bike lanes, wider sidewalks, and street parking ahead of a left turn lane on the priorities list, given the restricted road space (not dissimilar from, say, Bishop Arts District and Lowest Greenville).
The last few times I've been downtown, I've found it very interesting how Sundance is diversifying into more retail instead of just restaurant after restaurant. It's something I've hoped to see for a long time, and I hope it goes well.
As for what takes RS's place - this is a long shot, but man, I'd love to see American Apparel stake out that spot. That would be a big draw for downtown. (And a local outlet for my favorite plain logo-free t-shirts.)
Also, that's nonsense. I've expressed a lot of praise for some ongoing and recent projects - two that come to mind are the Sundance Square plaza and new buildings (an utterly *fantastic* project which I have always been extremely positive about) and the development happening on South Main right now like High Point(e), which I praised just, like, *a day or two ago* on this very forum. Heck, *this very project* - the street connector itself - I'm very positive about, just not about the public art component.
I'm actually really happy these days, but I will never not think flying cow horns are cheesy. John provides this forum for discussion, positive and negative, and unless he says otherwise I will provide both depending on my opinions and in keeping with his rules. You can read it and agree/disagree, or stick me in your ignore file (trust me, it works wonders), that's your call.
I remember going to a meeting about this art piece and feeling distinctly underwhelmed. Oh boy, flying cow horns. Because that certainly ties into the history and current identity of the Near Southside.
Maybe it'll look better in person, but I can't help but wish for a bit more forward-thinking piece of art.
(Also very underwhelmed by the art pieces on Rosedale, but that's for another thread.)