Downtown Dallas is going to be celebrating New Year's Eve with two special events and preparations are already underway.
These events are expected to increase traffic in the Central Business District — particularly around Reunion Tower and Dallas City Hall.
The festivities are two-pronged:
- 7 pm-12:30 am: Dallas New Year's Eve City Hall Party on the Plaza, where a countdown begins leading up to the stroke of midnight.
- 11:59 pm: Reunion Tower launches its Over the Top Fireworks Show, described as "the only 360-degree, panoramic fireworks spectacular in the Central time zone."
Isn't that such a prototypical Dallas claim? It can't just be great fireworks — it's the only spectacular in the Central time zone.
So to clarify: We are not trying to compete with the big kahuna in New York's Times Square, and whatever is taking place on the West Coast. But we're kings of the CST. Our fireworks can beat Chicago, Nashville, St. Louis, Minneapolis, and Kansas City. They'll be better than San Salvador, Guatemala City, and the entire Yucatan. Better than New Orleans.
Beginning at 11:30 pm, some downtown buildings are joining forces to enhance the fireworks with preliminary sky action. CST, Reunion Tower, Hunt Realty Investments, and Downtown Dallas, Inc. have partnered to bring vibrant hues of pink and teal to the skyline.
Just before the clock strikes midnight, participating buildings including AT&T Headquarters, the Omni Dallas Hotel, Bank of America Plaza, and Thanksgiving Tower will go dark for one minute, as a prelude to the 10-minute show, which will feature more than 4,000 pyrotechnic special effects.
Is this a good time to bring up that fireworks are terrifying to animals and wildlife, and result in many pets in Texas getting loose, with some hit by cars and others ending up in the shelter? And that cities in Texas should choose the humane route by using silent fireworks which are visually exciting but mostly noiseless?
In any case, pet owners are advised to keep their animals inside on New Year's Eve.
If you're not headed downtown, you can listen to the musical score via a simulcast on ALT 103.7 FM; watch it on NBC 5; or watch a live stream on Reunion Tower's YouTube, Facebook, or Instagram accounts.
If you are headed downtown, be advised that there will be street closures, as follows:
- Young Street between Griffin and Ervay 6 pm-12:30 am
- South Akard Street between Wood and Canton 6 pm-12:30 am
- South Ervay Street between Young and Canton 6 pm-12:30 am
- Marilla Street between Wood and Evergreen 6 pm-12:30 am
- Browder Street between Young and Canton 8 am-12:30 am
- Hotel Street between Reunion Blvd East and Memorial Drive 8 pm-12:45 am
- Sports Street between North Drive and Memorial Drive 8 pm-12:45 am
Police will be on hand to direct traffic in and around those closures, including the worst part: the post-midnight eastbound traffic on Commerce Street and Young Street.
DART is also giving free rides from 6 pm until the end of service on December 31 on DART buses, light rail, Paratransit Services, and the Trinity Railway Express (TRE rides from EBJ Union Station to CentrePort/DFW Airport Station only).