Ross Avenue facelift brightens gateway to Dallas Arts District
Sunday May 13, 2012
Dallas Morning News – by DEBBIE DENMON
DALLAS — Finally, progress for the planned facelift along Ross Avenue in Dallas.
That’s the main street leading into the city’s world-renowned Arts District.
Residents say a walk to museums once meant passing businesses with burglar bars. Now, there are signs of luxury living, with $300,000 town homes under construction in the Bryan Place neighborhood, where the city says image is everything.
Bryan Place is a walk away from downtown Dallas. “We call ourselves the Gateway to the Arts District,” said resident David Allen.
It’s two minutes away to be exact, as cars travel under Central Expressway, a new mural indicates Ross Avenue is being revitalized.
Allen sits on the neighborhood association board, and he helped push for change — for good reason. “Well, this place had bars on the windows,” he said. “It was terrible.”
A well-traveled road is now on its way to a better image.
The City of Dallas rezoned Ross Avenue, which shut down more than a dozen used car lots and auto repair shops considered eyesores, making room for new business.
“It’s the first neighborhood restaurant,” Allen exclaimed. “Right actually in the neighborhood.”
This zone permits only mixed-use development that will update the 21st century look the city is striving for.
Veletta Forsythe Lill is the former Dallas City Council member who spearheaded the project back in 2005. “You are seeing the fruits of it today by the townhomes, apartments, small businesses that are coming in,” she said.
For example: A nearly 400-unit luxury apartment complex called The Icon took the place of two nightclubs and a motorcycle bar, and it’s only two minutes from downtown.
“It’s definitely beautified the whole area for sure,” Allen said.
The aesthetically pleasing shift greets motorists and pedestrians as they leave Ross Avenue and head into Arts District.
You will soon see a public art piece worth more than $100,000 under North Central Expressway at Ross Avenue. The work will link downtown Dallas and the Arts District to show how serious the city is about changing the image.