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Economic Development

Editorial by Linda Brown, Economic Strategic Solutions

The city of Dallas foresees continual growth in the area and is working to add new employment opportunities and residents in the coming years. The City’s Comprehensive Plan projects that another 200,000 households and 400,000 jobs will be added by the year 2030. Dallas is directing this growth into new developments and redevelopment sites throughout the area — including its southern sector.

In the last few years, Oak Cliff has become a focal point for development in Dallas, as City officials have realized that further growth should be concentrated on the southern end of Dallas — an area that offers large tracts of quality, developable land and a viable workforce population.

Oak Cliff has experienced an upward trend in its economic vitality over the last decade or so, when the City of Dallas placed heavy emphasis on southern sector development. Infrastructure improvements, including the interchange at I-30 and Cockrell Hill Road and access roads, as well as proposals for new access roads along portions of I-20 in South Oak Cliff, are opening up accessibility and vast tracts of open land for new development.

The 900-acre Pinnacle Park, the Mountain Creek area and the Dallas Executive Airport are all experiencing expansion initiatives by the City. Stonebridge Office Park, Southport, and across Cockrell Hill Road are prime industrial parks, and further tenants are expected for the business parks that have been developed on the other side of I-30 over the last 10-plus years. Other smaller industrial and business parks dot the map of the area, with many still offering vacant land to potential developers. Prime land is also available for development within the Gateway area of Oak Cliff — including the old Burnett Field site adjacent to the great Trinity River Corridor.

Plans for the expansive Trinity River Corridor continue to progress. For years, the Trinity River has served as a barrier between the northern and southern communities of Dallas. In 1998, Dallas voters approved a $246 million bond issue for this significant urban development effort. The institution of the Trinity River Corridor Project in Dallas is vital, as it will address a number of regional concerns, including flood protection, environmental management, recreation, transportation and community/economic development. The initial $246 million investment is expected to advance the venture of the additional $1 billion available.

In the center of the Trinity River Corridor stands the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge, designed by internationally renowned architect, sculptor, and engineer, Santiago Callatrava. The bridge connects the north and south sides of Dallas (connecting Oak Cliff with Downtown) by linking the banks of the Trinity River.

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