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Old August 29th, 2008, 03:12 PM   #41
city_thing
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Is the carpark really part of the design?... that's very, Texas.



I really like this awesome grass wave thing though. This whole development is 'the shit'.

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Old August 30th, 2008, 10:55 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by city_thing View Post
Is the carpark really part of the design?... that's very, Texas.

O god...let me give you the "history" of the "Car Park"

from long ago......

What's wrong with this picture?


October 31, 2003

By STEVE BROWN / The Dallas Morning News

The Meyerson Symphony Center anchors the Arts District and dominates the northeast corner of the downtown skyline.

But right across the street from the Meyerson is another landmark that's often overlooked.

The jumble of rust-streaked concrete columns between Flora Street and Ross Avenue is all that's left of a developer's dream.

In the 1980s, a Chicago builder started work on twin 50-story skyscrapers. But a real estate crash killed the deal, and nothing was built but the foundation.



Allison V. Smith / DMN


The foundation of Lone Star Plaza is artistic in its own right, but it's all that was ever built of planned 50-story towers.
The site is emblematic of the Arts District's history with the private sector.

Almost $500 million has been spent on infrastructure and cultural facilities, but private developers have for the most part been out of the game.

"We are still waiting for the economics of development in the Arts District to catch up with the cultural amenities that are on the ground," said developer John Sughrue, who owns several properties in the area. "Everyone thought it would happen a lot sooner."

Now, with the opening of the Nasher Sculpture Center and the building boom in nearby Uptown, developers are taking another look at the Arts District.

"The Nasher has refocused attention on the area," Mr. Sughrue said. "And I think people expect to see things happening down there."

High hopes are nothing new in the Arts District. In the 1980s, you couldn't have found a hotter chunk of real estate on the planet.

Before the Dallas Museum of Art – the first cultural facility there – opened its doors in 1984, developers were buying up land between Ross Avenue and Woodall Rodgers and making big plans. Land quickly hit almost $300 per square foot.

Properties traded and flipped, and architects designed futuristic towers for every corner.

Along with the art museum and the symphony hall, proposals for the district included millions of square feet of office space, hundreds of rental units, and lavish shops, studios and galleries for artists.

Developers including Lincoln Property Co., Bright Banc and Metropolitan Structures of Chicago announced plans for almost a dozen office towers for the district.

The construction plans reached the point that art critics fretted that all the skyscrapers would keep the DMA's sculpture garden in perpetual shadow.

Such worries were misplaced.

In the end, only one office tower – the 50-story Trammell Crow Center at Ross and Harwood Street – was built. And much of the Arts District remains pretty much as it looked in the early 1980s.



This 50-story tower never made it off the drawing board.

Prime development tracts are still occupied by crumbling parking lots, scruffy vacant land and decrepit buildings.

Phil Montgomery, whose P.O'B. Montgomery & Co. was instrumental in early coordination of the Arts District, said the area never gained the critical mass of private sector construction needed to spur continued building.

"But I think having the Arts District helped stabilize downtown a lot more than if we had done none of that," Mr. Montgomery said.

And he credits the Arts District with kicking off the housing boom in the nearby State Thomas district of Uptown. "The creation of the district meant a lot to Uptown and all those new housing units."

Dallas architect Graham Greene still hasn't given up the notion of building luxury housing in the Arts District. He and partners own the block across the street from the Nasher Sculpture Center at Flora and Olive streets.

In 1998, Mr. Greene announced plans for condominiums and retail space on the site.

"We have delayed development of our site because of Sept. 11 and the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq," he said. "But we haven't given up our plans."

Mr. Greene wants to eventually develop an eight-story building on the block with about 80 residences.

"We believe that residential development is the best thing that can happen for downtown Dallas and the Arts District," he said. "If there was less uncertainty about the economy, we would move forward."

A landmark, of sorts

Another prime Arts District development tract – the Stonehenge-like Lone Star Plaza site across from the Meyerson – is in the hands of Dallas real estate investor and developer Craig Hall.

While Mr. Hall has shown that he's not afraid of taking risks with other investments, so far he hasn't pulled the switch to start work on the Lone Star Plaza site.

He's owned the building site, which sits on top of an underground parking garage, since 1995.

"I still think I'm two or three years away from building something there," said Mr. Hall, who has hired architect HKS Inc. to design a 12- or 13-story office building with residential space on top.

"Unfortunately, the market down there is just not ready for office and residential construction," he said. "I think the Nasher Sculpture Center is fantastic and a tribute to Ray Nasher that he did it.

"But I don't think it will have an immediate impact on development in the area," Mr. Hall said. "In any other city, it would be a home run."

The largest undeveloped tract in the Arts District is held by another experienced developer, Lucy Crow Billingsley.

She has almost 10 acres at the east end of the district at the end of Flora Street.

Ms. Billingsley said her family began assembling the land in the late 1970s with an eye toward building high-rise office, hotel or residential space.

"I imagined back then that downtown Dallas would have tremendous growth, and the heart of the city would have expanded to the Arts District," she said. "But it never happened."

Ms. Billingsley said she still hopes to build high-rise residential on the land someday. And she's held discussions with the Dallas Museum of Natural History about perhaps locating there as well.

"But I'm real flexible," she said. "If something doesn't transpire, we will wait and see what the development and resurgence of downtown calls for."

Work in progress

Mr. Sughrue isn't waiting.

His Brook Partners is converting the former Southwestern Life Insurance Co. building at Ross and St. Paul across from the DMA into first-class office space and a wholesale apparel mart.

In the 1980s, the block was slated to be demolished to make way for a row of skyscrapers. Twenty years later, the old buildings are getting a new look.

And Mr. Sughrue is selling a small block at the north end of his property to a cultural group.

"There is going to be a priority placed on proximity to these incredible cultural institutions," he said. "We believe we are getting closer to the day we can support high-rise residences or an additional office tower.

"We're close, but that's not today," he said.

Mr. Sughrue blames runaway land speculation and the real estate market crash in the 1980s with keeping the Arts District off most builders' maps.

"Land values in the Arts District today are more than 50 percent less than what they were 15 years ago, but they are still too high for most retail and residential development," he said. "If current trends continue, we are going to see quality private development again in the Arts District."

These are the towers that are supposed to be on the "Stonehenge" parking garage that is left that looks NOTHING like the render up top.
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Old September 22nd, 2008, 06:10 PM   #43
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Dallas Center for the Performing Arts lands $15 million windfall, improves design
08:02 AM CDT on Monday, September 22, 2008

By SCOTT CANTRELL / The Dallas Morning News
[email protected]

The Dallas Center for the Performing Arts has landed its third-largest contribution and a new, improved design for outdoor spaces around the Winspear Opera House and Wyly Theatre, now under construction.

Thanks to a $15 million gift from Sammons Enterprises Inc., the 10-acre park in the downtown Arts District will be named the Elaine D. and Charles A. Sammons Park.

In response to criticism of initial designs for the park, French landscape architect Michel Desvigne and the Chicago firm JJR have produced a simpler, calmer plan that is more coherent and will compete less with the adjacent buildings, designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architects.

Scheduled to open in fall 2009, the center's Winspear was designed by Foster + Partners, the Wyly by REX/OMA (Joshua Prince-Ramus and Rem Koolhaas). The adjacent 19-year-old Meyerson Symphony Center was designed by I.M. Pei.

The two largest gifts to the performing arts center came earlier in the fundraising campaign: $42 million from Margot and the late Bill Winspear for the opera house and $20 million from Dee and Charles Wyly and Cheryl and Sam Wyly for the theater. To date, the campaign has raised more than $325 million toward a goal of $338 million.

"To get a gift of this significance at this point in the campaign is really remarkable," Mr. Lively said. "It gives us the incentive and momentum to push to the end."

Founded by Mr. Sammons in 1962, Sammons Enterprises evolved out of a stock-life insurance company. At one point, Sammons Enterprises included everything from financial-services companies to hotel properties to bottled water, and it was one of the first investors in cable television.

Today, Sammons Enterprises is a diversified holding company that employs more than 4,300 in the United States, Mexico and the United Kingdom. One of the largest privately held companies in Dallas, the firm has operations including insurance and construction-equipment companies and the Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa in Asheville, N.C.

Since Mr. Sammons' death in 1988, his wife, Elaine, has been chairwoman of the company and a philanthropist and arts patron. A contribution from the couple helped establish Dallas' Sammons Center for the Arts, which provides permanent office and rehearsal spaces for 12 performing arts organizations and is used by more than 40 groups for performances, rehearsals and meetings.

"Sammons Park will be a refreshing venue for all the people of Dallas – those attending the symphony, opera or theater, as well as families and those who work and live downtown," said Sammons Enterprises CEO Robert Korba. "It will host cultural events, outdoor art exhibits and outdoor performances."

A 'calmed' design
The previous design, unveiled in September 2006, drew a dismissive review from longtime Dallas Morning News architecture critic David Dillon, who described what was then called Performance Park as "a potpourri of discrete elements in search of a larger idea."

"Performance Park turns [out] to be more miniature golf course than grand civic space, with water hazards, tiny fairways, everything except the flags for pin placement. ...

"The park is overwrought and unresolved, with no clear center, no hierarchy or crisp spatial definition."

Stung, the performing arts center and its landscape designers regrouped and assembled a peer-review panel including Frederick Steiner, dean of the University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture, and Dr. Dillon, who by then had left the staff of The News.

"We as a group, with our clients, revisited the design," said Debra Mitchell, senior vice president of JJR, the site architect of record. "We undertook a number of things that I would say calmed the design.

"With two such prestigious buildings, it needed to be very calming and simple and not detract from their magnificence."

Gone are the earlier design's fussy groupings, clearly conceived as naming opportunities, in favor of more open spaces with fewer trees and water features.

The plan creates a clear axis between the Wyly and Winspear and punctuates lawns among paved walkways with crisp patches of native grasses and perennial flowers. The only water feature is a rectangular fountain, to the right of the opera house entrance.

Park plans
The plan envisions the aluminum-fin canopy extending well beyond the opera house, shading movable tables and chairs. It also calls for free wireless access throughout the park.

In the middle of the long, wide slope into the underground entrance to the Wyly will be a zigzag, handicapped-accessible ramp, its switchbacks interspersed with more native plantings.

The park is expected to be completed by October 2009, when the opera house, theater and the outdoor Annette Strauss Artist Square open. A lineup of opening events will be announced soon.

"What we have envisioned all along is that this be a very democratic space," Ms. Mitchell said of the overall plan. "It should feel welcoming to anybody. If I were coming in from a suburban location to downtown with my family, I should feel free to walk down the street, enter the plaza, buy a newspaper and enjoy it.

"We want this to be not only a big, splashy, premier performance place, but a space that is well used by Dallas citizens around the year."

Designs for the Annette Strauss square are being reworked in response to noise concerns from the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, which performs and has offices in the Meyerson Symphony Center. The performing arts center design calls for moving the outdoor performance space behind the Meyerson, with its stage backed up against the northwest corner of the opera house.

And still to come from the city of Dallas are plans for the large urban park envisioned for a deck covering a two-block stretch of Woodall Rodgers Freeway northwest of the center.
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Old September 25th, 2008, 01:18 AM   #44
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New Photos

Winspear
(check out the Red Glass.....ooooooooo)










Wyly






Both from another angle
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Old September 25th, 2008, 04:01 AM   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by city_thing View Post
Is the carpark really part of the design?... that's very, Texas.

lol......truly texas-like
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Old September 25th, 2008, 06:15 AM   #46
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seriously? Car park is the only thing you idiots are looking at? I mean, you have these theaters and parks and your worried about a car park that every city has, and those cities usually have 10 to 15+. I mean, seriously. WTF?
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Old September 25th, 2008, 09:19 PM   #47
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Here is the real photos of the angle everyone is throwing a fit about. And there is your parking garage, we call it Stone Henge. It is the base of what was going to be a 50 story tower in the late 80's tower boom in Dallas. Now it is closed and many kids use it for a skate park.
image hosted on flickr
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Old October 2nd, 2008, 11:53 PM   #48
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Very Texas.
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Old October 4th, 2008, 03:57 AM   #49
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Very Texas.
I don't think this word means what you think it means.
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Old October 4th, 2008, 08:15 AM   #50
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Very Texas.
Really? I mean, if shown this view for the first time and having no idea what any of this was, you would think Texas?
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Old October 6th, 2008, 12:26 PM   #51
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cars + freeways + giant car parks = Texas.

Sorry dude, I know Texas has some great places and is more than just a giant homage to the auto industry. But you guys really are mad about trucks and stuff...

Anyway, this is getting off topic. This is a great development, very exciting for Dallas I suspect.
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Old October 7th, 2008, 09:35 PM   #52
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cars + freeways + giant car parks = Texas.
No, the Equals the United States of America where the State of Texas and California are as big if not bigger then 3/4th of the countries in Europe. We have to drive everywhere in our own cars because our country is to big for trains going everywhere. Seriously, you Europeans do not understand the USA internal workings at all, it is nothing like Europe.

Besides, you only see one car park, and it is small, very small.

And that is not a freeway, it is a connector between 3 freeways. European morons.

And we dont all still drive trucks, come look at a used car lot, it only has trucks because everyone is trading them in for fuel efficient smaller cars. You seem to think that you know everything about this region of this country based on stereotypes you hear, im surprised you didnt ask where we keep our horses!

Last edited by Big Texan; October 7th, 2008 at 09:41 PM.
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Old October 7th, 2008, 09:55 PM   #53
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when i said very taxes i meant in a good way i love everything about USA i been to lots of states, i know europe is different from US much old and out of date.
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Old October 8th, 2008, 05:13 AM   #54
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Quote:
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when i said very taxes i meant in a good way i love everything about USA i been to lots of states, i know europe is different from US much old and out of date.
o.... then Cheers!
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Old October 9th, 2008, 08:26 AM   #55
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What a great project. Dallas looks great btw
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Old October 10th, 2008, 06:59 AM   #56
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I'm not even going to bother with a reply
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Old October 10th, 2008, 08:55 AM   #57
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now if that damn woodall rogers park will get built.
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Old October 11th, 2008, 09:50 AM   #58
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it should be built soon
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Old October 14th, 2008, 04:48 AM   #59
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With the Wyly, Insulation now covers the entire building. Soon we'll start to see the final siding put in place.
image hosted on flickr


image hosted on flickr


Thanks to NThomas76207
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Old October 14th, 2008, 04:49 AM   #60
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And on the Winspear, More red tiles, more angles. Plus, the overhang is starting to take shape.
image hosted on flickr


image hosted on flickr


image hosted on flickr
image hosted on flickr


image hosted on flickr


Thanks to NThomas76207 again
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