Steve Blow has the best take I’ve read on the home rule debacle. I said it.
Last month, I wrote this in the Lakewood Advocate about the city’s current effort to rewrite Dallas’ conservation district ordinance and the damage it will do to historic preservation. Read the city’s proposal. I’ve put together this comparison chart to highlight the differences between the current CD formation process and the city’s proposed changes.
Today the City Plan Commission is being briefed on this proposal. I sent this letter to Plan Commissioners:
You know, I was really trying to keep an open mind about the Support Our Public Schools campaign to make DISD a “home rule” district. (You can read my initial thoughts on the topic in this month’s Lakewood Advocate Magazine.) I liked the idea of an open, honest, public conversation about the pros and cons of home rule, and who doesn’t love a good referendum? I particularly liked the idea of creating self-regulated sub-districts within DISD, so East Dallas could have its own school district.
I’ve gotten several requests for more information about the proposed conservation district changes (UPDATE: Read Proposed Conservation District Ordinance Changes.) Melissa Kingston has done an excellent, thorough job of analyzing city staff’s proposed changes to the conservation district process. She has kindly agreed to let me repost her analysis.
In 2013, my service on the Dallas City Council will come to a close. I am writing to thank you for your support these last eight years, and to introduce you to my good friend Philip Kingston, who will be running for my seat.
The Dallas Museum of Art just announced museum admission will be free, starting in January.
This is awesome. This is going to open up the museum to an entirely new group of people who’ve never set foot in a museum. For residents, it’ll become a new destination, and for conventioneers and visitors, a great introduction to Dallas.
This is yet another step towards a new, better, cooler, funner Dallas. Klyde Warren Park, to me, was step one: a fun park with lots of stuff to do, that’s free to the public. The combo of KWP and the DMA will be terrific. Play at the park, hit the museum, come back to the park for dinner. Very fun.
In a perfect world, here’s what else would be free: DART. The Nasher. The Zoo. The Arboretum. Neiman’s. (A girl can dream.) Add a robust system of bike lanes and I think Dallas can be the coolest city in the country. Yeah, I said it.
Dallas is not a bike-friendly city.
Over the last two years, the city has been taking baby steps to change that: We completed a new bike plan last year, put several millions of dollars into the upcoming bond package for hike and bike trails as well as several “complete streets” projects, painted bike lanes and “sharrows” on a handful of city streets, and proposed a vulnerable road user law that will protect bicyclists from cars.
But this isn’t nearly enough. Continue reading