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Dallas Mayor calls for inventory of city-owned land to turn into parks, playgrounds, affordable housing

mayor eric johnson
mayor eric johnson

Mayor Eric Johnson on Monday requested an inventory of vacant, unused, and underused city-owned land to determine what can be transformed into a park, playground, sports court, or affordable housing.

Mayor Johnson made the request in a memo to City Manager T.C. Broadnax. The mayor, who has made parks a top priority of his administration, previously announced his intention to request the inventory in his State of the City Address earlier this month.

Dallas has become a national leader in developing innovative green spaces and has continued to improve its parks and programming for families in the city. New parks such as Carpenter Park, West End Plaza, and South Oak Cliff Renaissance Park have replaced former sites of surface parking lots and illegal dumping grounds.

According to Trust for Public Land, the City of Dallas and its nonprofit partners have brought new parks and trails within a 10-minute walk of nearly 300,000 residents over the last few years.

However, more than a quarter of Dallas residents still do not live within a 10-minute walk of a park. Mayor Johnson has made it a goal to ensure that all Dallas residents have access to parks, trails, and other green spaces.

“I believe now is the time to take our efforts to the next level,” Mayor Johnson said. “Through land already owned by the City of Dallas, we have opportunities to create new green spaces and improve neighborhoods across our city.”

The mayor encouraged the city manager to work with Trust for Public Land and the semi-independent Dallas Park & Recreation Department to compile the inventory.

“This is a project worth our city’s time and attention. Creating new public spaces out of land we already own can improve the health and quality of life of countless residents, children, and families across Dallas,” Mayor Johnson said. “We must be proactive, and we must be bold. We are dreamers, not speculators. We must also be a city of doers, and not perpetual planners.”

Read the mayor’s memo here.

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