City News Roundup

Trinity River park plans are unveiled and more Dallas city news

Trinity River park plans are unveiled and more Dallas city news

Rendering of Harold Simmons Park in Trinity River basin
Harold Simmons Park in the Trinity River basin. Photo courtesy of Trinity Park Conservancy

In Dallas news, a developer gets pushy, a grand jury comes down with an indictment, and plans for a new park are unveiled.

Here's what happened in Dallas city news this week:

Botham Jean indictment
Fired Dallas cop Amber Guyger was indicted for murder for killing her neighbor Botham Jean. Guyger is out on bond awaiting trial, which could be scheduled more than a year from now.

A Dallas County grand jury upgraded the original manslaughter charge. District Attorney Faith Johnson said her office believed the shooting was a murder case all along, but said it was the Texas Rangers who made the initial decision to file it as a manslaughter charge.

Prosecutors spoke to more than 300 witnesses in their investigation. Johnson stressed that a murder charge "is intentionally and knowingly committing that act" while manslaughter is a "reckless" action.

Oak Lawn development
For nearly three years, Lincoln Properties has been foiled in its plans to upzone lots in Oak Lawn for Lincoln Katy Trail, a proposed 323-unit apartment building. Their plan has been rejected by the neighborhood group the Oak Lawn Committee, as well as The City Planning Commission.

But on December 13, they're going back to the Planning Commission for another try.

The proposed project is in District 14, nestled on Carlisle between Hall and Bowen. Council member Phillip Kingston, who represents the area, is opposed to the apartments after initial silence on the subject. Former City Council member Angela Hunt is representing the developer.

Candy's Dirt speculates that this return to the Planning Commission means one commissioner has likely changed their mind about the project and wants a rehearing.

D4 runoff
Voters in District 4 will return to the polls on December 11 for the runoff election to determine who will replace Dwaine Caraway.

The vote is between former council member Carolyn King Arnold and Keyaira D. Saunders. The two candidates received the most votes out of a field of 13 on Election Day.

The District 4 seat was vacated after Caraway resigned amid a guilty plea of felony charges.

Trinity River park
The Trinity Park Conservancy unveiled its plans for Harold Simmons Park, the park being installed in the floodplain adjacent to the Trinity River. The plan will work with the river, accommodating the fact that it floods regularly, by putting amenities on high ground. The one thing it will not include: a roadway.

The landscape architect for the project is Michael Van Valkenburgh, a Harvard professor whose resume includes numerous parks in New York; a water treatment facility in New Haven, Connecticut; and the Garden on Turtle Creek in Dallas. The groundbreaking is set for 2020, and the opening is planned for 2022.