East Dallas residents can help determine the future of our neighborhoods by participating in public meetings seeking ideas and feedback.

Hearings will be held on the Neighborhood Traffic Management Study, which will create a plan for how a sound-wall will be installed along Central Expressway and how streets between Greenville and Central will be configured.

Other public hearings will be held by the Community Development Commission before it recommends to the City Council how to spend millions of federal dollars for programs in Dallas.

Traffic Study Underway

The long-awaited traffic study got underway in late November, and the City’s consultant, Kimley-Horn and Associates, is working with our staff and residents to create a plan to lessen the impact of non-resident traffic through some East Dallas neighborhoods and to protect them from noise from the reconstruction of Central.

The study covers the area bounded by Central, Mockingbird, Greenville and Henderson. Some community leaders would like to expand the study area to Fitzhugh. If other areas outside of the study are affected by proposed traffic changes, they will be addressed.

The study’s goal is to build community consensus for the plan that is the best solution to neighborhood traffic management issues identified with the help of the public.

A series of meetings will be held in January and February to work toward reaching consensus on the plan. Sessions concerning general issues (Series 1) will be held Jan. 8, 9 and 11; alternatives will be reviewed Jan. 29 and 30 (Series II); and a final recommendation will emerge at two final gatherings Feb. 18 and 19.

The agenda at meetings in each of the first two series will be the same, so residents are encouraged to pick the two most convenient. Meetings will be 7-8:30 p.m. at these locations.

Meetings Series I:

• Monday, Jan. 8, Ridgecrest Baptist Church, 5470 Ellsworth.
• Tuesday, Jan. 9, James Bonham Elementary School, 2617 N. Henderson.
• Thursday, Jan. 11, Belmont Towers, 5619 Belmont.

Meetings Series II:

• Monday, Jan. 29, Ridgecrest Baptist Church, 5470 Ellsworth.
• Tuesday, Jan. 30, Belmont Towers, 5619 Belmont.
• Thursday, Feb. 1, James Bonham Elementary School, 2617 N. Henderson.

Locations for series III meetings (Final Recommendation) will be announced later. If you have any questions or comments, contact Alex Wong at 670-4654.

Federal Funds Available

The City’s Community Development Commission, chaired by Hollywood-Santa Monica resident Rob Parks, will hold 16 public hearings to help establish priorities for several federal grant programs that provide tens of millions of dollars to the City for AIDS services, homeless assistance, housing, public improvements in low-income areas and other programs.

Community Development Block Grants have been provided for improvements to parks, streets and sidewalks in East Dallas. They also have helped low-income residents repair their homes and have funded after-school programs in our community.

The first step toward seeing that money is available later this year and is put to use in our neighborhoods is for people to attend these public sessions and make their voices heard. Meetings most convenient to East Dallas residents are:

• Thursday, Jan. 4, Dallas City Hall, City Council Chambers, 7:30 p.m.
• Tuesday, Jan. 16, Dallas City Hall, Room 6ES, 6:30 p.m.
• Wednesday, Jan. 17, Pleasant Grove Library, 1125 S. Buckner, 6 p.m.
• Thursday, Jan. 18, Dallas Central Library Auditorium, 1515 Young, 2 p.m.
• Saturday, Jan. 20, Samuell-Grand Recreation Center, 6200 E. Grand, 10 a.m.
• Monday, Jan. 22, Vickery Baptist Church, 5814 Ridgecrest, 7 p.m.

For information, call the Community Division of the City Controller’s Office, 670-4550. Those with special needs should contact the City’s Office on Disabilities at 670-5208 (V/TDD) 48 hours before the meeting.

As always, if our office can help you and your neighborhood, please call us at 670-5415. Our e-mail address is mcdaniel95@aol.com.