City Council Endorsements – 2017

City Council Endorsements – 2017

The Coalition for a New Dallas launched more than two years ago with the mission of revitalizing our city’s neighborhoods and restoring its urban core through public policies that improve mobility, generate economic development, and enhance the quality of life for residents.

We strongly believe in replacing highway I-345 with urban boulevards and mixed-income, mixed-used development. We adamantly oppose the construction of a high-speed toll road in the floodplain of the Trinity River. Fair Park must become a year-round economic engine for the surrounding neighborhoods and city at-large. And DART, the longest and least efficient transit system in the country, needs to be overhauled so that ridership and the bus system are prioritized over coverage and sprawling rail lines.

We’ve been fortunate to have effective champions at City Hall and look forward to expanding that support after this year’s city council election cycle. Below are the Coalition’s endorsements for 2017:

District 1: Scott Griggs
District 2: Adam Medrano
District 3: No endorsement
District 4: Carolyn King Arnold / Dwaine Caraway
District 5: Dominique Torres
District 6: No endorsement
District 7: Kevin Felder / Tammy Johnston
District 8: Tennell Atkins
District 9: Mark Clayton
District 10: Adam McGough
District 11: Candy Evans
District 12: Sandy Greyson
District 13: Jennifer Staubach Gates
District 14: Philip Kingston

You can confirm your district and polling place here. Early vote has begun, and you can vote at any polling location through May 2.

Election Day is Saturday, May 6, and we invite you to join us at an Election Kickoff Party on May 3rd at the Rustic. RSVP here, and invite your colleagues, neighbors, and friends.

Here’s to a better, more connected Dallas.

Secretary Foxx on “the Road to Opportunity”

Secretary Foxx on “the Road to Opportunity”

U.S. Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx spoke before the Transportation Research Board about the importance of transportation’s role in economic opportunity and community building. Click the link here, or see the full video below:

The Road to Opportunity – Anthony Foxx, Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation from The Academies on Vimeo.

The Legacy of the U.S. Highway System

The Legacy of the U.S. Highway System

NPR’s “The Diane Rehm Show” had on a special guest in U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx last Thursday to discuss the impact of the American highway system. Here’s a clip:

When the country’s urban freeways were constructed, they were often routed through low income, minority neighborhoods. Instead of connecting us to each other, Foxx says many of these highways were intentionally built to separate us. He says it’s a legacy the country has struggled to address and it’s one Foxx hopes to begin to repair.

To read the full transcript or listen to the segment, click here.

Why Even Build Highways?

Why Even Build Highways?

Joseph Stromberg at Vox asks one important question: why did we build highways across our American cities anyway?

“The 48,000 miles of interstate highway that would be paved across the country during the 1950s, ’60s, and ’70s were a godsend for many rural communities. But those highways also gutted many cities, with whole neighborhoods torn down or isolated by huge interchanges and wide ribbons of asphalt. Wealthier residents fled to the suburbs, using the highways to commute back in by car. That drained the cities’ tax bases and hastened their decline.”

Read the article in its entirety here.

What Do Highways Have to Do With Poverty?

What Do Highways Have to Do With Poverty?

The Atlantic dives into the relationship between highways and poverty in America, following a talk at the University of Arkansas’s Clinton School of Public Service:

“[Cities] have tried to tear down barriers that prevent all of their residents from reaching their full opportunity. Sometimes those barriers are highways. Sometimes they’re something else entirely. Tearing down a highway isn’t the only way to make a city healthy again. But building a new one—or expanding an existing one—seems a surefire way to make a city sick.”

Read Alana Semuels’ full article here.

Dallas Politics 2.0

Dallas Politics 2.0

Dallas Observer’s Jim Schutze discusses the new era of Dallas politics in this column.

“Two extremely interesting new organizations appeared more or less at the sides of the Musketeers, if not directly behind their banner — The Dallas Green Alliance and The Coalition for a New Dallas. Each of these organizations was led by people with serious political chops, several of whom had already fought and acquitted themselves honorably against City Hall and the old Citizens Council cabal, taking scalps on contentious issues like The Dallas Arboretum’s colonial ambitions for White Rock Lake, fracking in parks and preservation of the Great Trinity Forest,” Schutze writes. “All of that is probably inside baseball for most people in the city. Who dominates the City Council, what happens to the toll road, who gets his ticket punched at City Hall: Those are pretty arcane considerations. But when I look at those early bubbles in the pot, I can’t help thinking how different life becomes for everybody when a place matures and becomes capable of sustaining real politics, real competition.”

We highly recommend reading his entire article.

Thank You

Thank You

The crowd at the sold-out Bar Politics with Josh Kumler, an event hosted by the Coalition.
The crowd at the sold-out Bar Politics with Josh Kumler, an event hosted by the Coalition.

The Coalition officially filed its papers on February 10, making us just five months old. In those five months, we’ve generated more than 6,750 Facebook likes, hosted 10 events at unique venues throughout the city, and created a video that has been viewed more than 42,000 times (donated by generous—and talented—volunteers). We’ve also accumulated hundreds of volunteer hours who made thousands of phone calls which helped elect a new city council that has dramatically changed the conversation regarding the design of our city, the impact of elevated highways, and the future of neighborhoods.

In late June, a new Dallas political leadership began with the swearing in of our city council. At the same time, the Coalition geared up to launch a new era of civic engagement in Dallas. Typically, political organizations only get involved during elections. But now that the campaigns are over, we must transition from turning voters out to the polls to turning citizens out to City Hall. It’s imperative that we keep our elected representatives accountable. These efforts will also ensure that we maintain the civic engagement infrastructure we built heading into election season and build off of it. Out of the six open city council seats, we’re proud to say we have three new city council members—Carolyn King Arnold, Mark Clayton, and Adam McGough—who publicly support the Coalition’s efforts.

Thank you for helping build the Coalition into one of the most impactful organizations in Dallas. But much remains to be done, and we are excited to continue building this movement and changing the future of the city we call home.

Our Recommendations for June 13 City Council Runoffs

Our Recommendations for June 13 City Council Runoffs

The Coalition is committed to restoring neighborhoods and rebuilding the city’s urban core by replacing I-345 with boulevards that improve local transportation and unlock economic development. We are fortunate to have committed leaders at City Hall who will champion our efforts, but we need more support. The Coalition is making recommendations in two of the four June 13 City Council runoffs.

In District 10, Adam McGough and Paul Reyes both support our efforts to responsibly replace I-345 with boulevards. Both candidates will be strong advocates for rebuilding Dallas’ urban core, so the Coalition will not be endorsing in this race.

Similarly in District 7, Tiffinni Young and Kevin Felder demonstrate an understanding of the urban challenges facing Dallas. The Coalition will not be endorsing in this race either.

In District 3 and District 8, however, there is a clear distinction between the candidates with regard to their views of how best to address the challenges facing our city’s urban core.

In District 3, the Coalition recommends Joe Tave. Tave is committed to strengthening neighborhoods and improving the quality of life in District 3. He will fight for transparency and accountability at City Hall, while working to improve funding for Police, Fire, Code Compliance, Animal Services, Parks, Libraries, and Senior Services. Tave has been a proud resident of southern Dallas for 23 years and supports the Coalition’s efforts to remove I-345 and reconnect neighborhoods.

In District 8, the Coalition recommends Dianne Gibson. Gibson has earned her title as “Miss Community,” devoting her life to public service and working with neighbors to improve social services and strengthen neighborhoods. Gibson has been a proud resident of southern Dallas for 32 years, and is committed to replacing I-345 in order to generate needed economic development and bring jobs back to Dallas’ urban core.

Our Recommendations in Dallas City Council Races

Our Recommendations in Dallas City Council Races

Coalition for a New Dallas is heartened to see that many candidates for Dallas City Council believe in restoring and reconnecting neighborhoods — in putting the needs of Dallas first.

Because of this, CND is making recommendations in four of six Council races with no incumbent. We also want to voice our support for a candidate in District 5 who clearly shares CND’s vision for a new Dallas.

 

District 4: We recommend Carolyn King Arnold. Carolyn is a longtime educator who has lived in the District 4 neighborhood for 35 years. She has worked tirelessly to improve the district. She has been active in the Glen Oaks Homeowners Association, has led the Oak Cliff Leadership Council, and served on the Crime Watch Executive Board. She will fight to build her neighborhood, improve property values, and bring jobs back to Dallas. She believes in spending tax money where it counts: in rebuilding her district—not on big-dollar projects that don’t produce economic benefit for the people.

 

District 5: We recommend Sherry Cordova. Sherry is a retired professor of early childhood education who has lived in the district for 34 years. She has worked for decades on neighborhood issues such as the renovation of Gateway Park and traffic safety concerns at DISD schools. She worked with citizens, subject matter experts, city planners, and the City Council to establish the first tree ordinance in Dallas. Sherry has also served as Vice President of the City’s Environmental Health Advisory Commission. Sherry will be an advocate for restoring neighborhoods and rebuilding Dallas’ urban core.

 

District 7: We recommend Baranda Fermin. Baranda has helped develop southern Dallas since she joined the faculty at UNT-Dallas in 2012. She is an educator with 15 years’ experience in bringing together resources and people to restore the economic, educational, and cultural landscape of urban communities. Baranda is involved in many efforts to improve District 7. She is currently the president of the South Blvd.-Park Row Historic Neighborhood Association. She works and volunteers with South Dallas WINS education work group, Our Friends Place, Dallas Summer Musicals, and the Junior League Dallas. Her goal is to make the district integral to the business of the city of Dallas, whether we’re re-imagining roads, business development, or education. She’ll fight to build the recreation center off Ferguson Road and restore Fair Park as the cultural center of the city, while prioritizing the development of sustainable — not seasonable — jobs for the surrounding neighborhoods.

 

District 9: We recommend Mark Clayton. Mark has lived in his District 9 neighborhood for 12 years. He is a small businessman who has worked hard to better his neighborhoods. He and his wife partnered with the North Texas Food Bank, as well as a local grocer and church, to establish a food pantry at their local elementary school. He is a member of the Casa Linda Neighborhood Association and volunteers with East Dallas Development Center. Mark will fight to keep White Rock Lake beautiful, improve property values, repair local streets, and bring jobs back to Dallas.

 

District 10: We recommend James White. James has lived in his neighborhood for 17 years and has shown a passion for improving his district. He has been active in the Woodbridge Homeowners Association for a decade. He is working to extend the Cottonwood Trail. His leadership led to the inaugural Woodbridge Art Festival with Richland College last year. James will fight to strengthen neighborhoods by repairing streets, improving public safety, and increasing the connectivity of the district with more trails and transportation options.

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