Texas Trees Foundation Charrette

May 30, 2019
5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
Architecture and Design Exchange
325 N St Paul, Suite 150
Dallas, TX 75201

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The Southwestern Medical District is a major economic hub for the City of Dallas, with a 1,000-acre campus comprised of 3 major hospitals; 36,000 employees; and 2.9M clinic and ER visits per year.  However, the district is faced with numerous environmental, infrastructure, and safety challenges that impact health and wellbeing. High traffic volumes and only 7% tree canopy result in poor air quality, warmer temperatures, ground pollution, automobile accidents, and unsafe pedestrian conditions. There are 9-miles of missing sidewalks, and 55% of existing sidewalks are missing landscape buffers.  Inconsistent lighting and disjointed street crossings make basic pedestrian circulation extremely difficult and dangerous, and 52% of the district lacks bicycle access.  

To address these challenges, the Texas Trees Foundation led a master planning effort to reshape the district’s street and pedestrian infrastructure. When fully realized the plan will create a safe, thriving and healthy community where one can live, work, play and heal and include: 23 acres of streets reclaimed for pedestrian use, including wider sidewalks, shared-use paths, park space and sidewalk cafes; 6,500 trees planted within the public realm; 21 miles of sidewalk added along streets; 73% of streets with a 6’ or greater pedestrian buffer, creating a safer and more comfortable walking environment; 80% (16.8 miles) of streets that support integrated bicycle infrastructure; and 1.2 million cubic feet of rain captured and treated by rain gardens.  

Two signature projects are slated for near-term implementation. Harry Hines Boulevard, the central “spine” of the Southwestern Medical District, will be reshaped to add: 1) an arboretum in the center median as well as increased tree coverage and diversity to increase the tree canopy and further mitigate urban heat island effects; and 2) Infrastructure for bikes and pedestrians to allow for the safe, comfortable passage of automobiles, public transit, bicyclists, and pedestrians. The cloverleaf interchange at Harry Hines Boulevard and Inwood Road will be reconfigured to create more connected green space, improve pedestrian and bike access through the district, and create a central public space anchor for the district. PWP Landscape Architecture has been commissioned to develop a vision plan for the reconfigured intersection and has developed a set of alternatives that the Texas Trees Foundation will be vetting with the public, as well as various partners and agencies. We would like the design and
planning community to provide input and feedback as well.

Please join Texas Trees Foundation, AIA Dallas, APA and ASLA for a discussion and charrette to outline opportunities and challenges of reshaping the interchange at Harry Hines and Inwood.  A light reception and networking will kick off the evening, followed by a short presentation, then break-out groups to consider the potential options to address the implementation of the Medical District Master Plan with regard to the Harry Hines and Inwood exchange.:

FACILITATORS:

PETER PARK has led innovative land use, urban design, and transportation practice for over 25 years in both public and private settings. He specializes in solutions that balance development needs with unique community and design quality concerns. He is the Director/Owner of Peter J. Park, LLC, a city planning and design practice based in Denver, Colorado. Since 2013, the firm has advised public, private, and non-government organizations in various cities including Houston, Los Angeles, Austin, Milwaukee, Memphis, Oklahoma City, Denver, Mexico City, and Chennai. Peter’s work focuses on creating walkable urban places of lasting value through the replacement of in-city highways with enriched street networks, effective transit-oriented development, and form-based codes. Peter served as Planning Director of Milwaukee and Denver and oversaw the removal of an elevated highway in downtown Milwaukee, numerous TOD planning efforts in Denver including the development of Denver Union Station, and comprehensive citywide zoning code updates in both cities. Peter was the 2012 Lincoln Loeb Fellow at the Harvard GSD and currently an Adjunct Associate Professor at UC-Denver.

MARIA LANDONI is a landscape architect at PWP Landscape Architecture, where she has contributed to a breadth of projects at many scales, including the Southern Expansion of Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, the LinkedIn Headquarters in Silicon Valley, and One Vanderbilt in New York City, among many others.  With a background in horticulture, urban design and landscape architecture, Maria owes her passion for design to her childhood spent in Buenos Aires and the Patagonia where she was fascinated by the juxtaposition of urban landscape and spontaneous nature. She brings over 12 years of experience to her design work, and feels that landscape architects have a unique ability to create places of great meaning and health in the moments of intersection between people and nature, particularly in urban sites. Maria has been awarded numerous awards including a National ASLA Honor Award in General Design in 2015. She holds an Associates Degree in Horticulture from the Universidad de Buenos Aires, a Bachelor of Landscape Architecture from Cal Poly Pomona, and a Master of Landscape Architecture from U.C. Berkeley.

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