Measuring Mayor Mike Rawlings' Lake Against ...Reality? Really?
This mailer hit select mailboxes yesterday. Note the dazzling lake, lower right-hand corner.
Ah, watercolors. They are just so great. Yesterday, two days before the Saturday City Council elections, a slick campaign mailer hit select households (not my own) with some wonderful watercolors of the Trinity River project, courtesy of our mayor, Mike Rawlings.
As people (not many) head to the polls Saturday, the mayor wants them to know how beautiful this thing is going to be. And it really is. It's a beautiful watercolor. I wanted to show it to you, in case you're not a select household either.
It looks like a big beautiful lake that stretches all the way across the foot of downtown. Sort of? The watercolor just shows a corner of it, but you get the impression it goes way out beyond what the picture shows. And it looks really great, like downtown Dallas all of a sudden is at the shores of Lake Michigan. Or at least lake Pontchartrain.
But here's the deal. I showed you the Juggler Under the Overpass council briefing earlier in the week. I will reproduce it again below. When I saw the mayor's beautiful watercolor of the lakes he says he's going to build downtown, it kind of jogged my memory.
I thought I remembered that way down in the appendices of the Juggler Under the Overpass briefing they said they didn't have any water to put in the lakes. The Juggler Under the Overpass people suggested we dig wells and pump the water up from underground, also hoping for some rain during certain limited seasons of the year.
Because of the absence of water to put in the lakes, however, the Juggler Under the Overpass people said the lakes might have to be somewhat smaller than earlier designs have called for, at least during what they called "Phase I," which you and I might call, "The Foreseeable Future" or "Real Life."
I went back and looked at the appendices, and ... ouch! The lakes the Juggler Under the Overpass people said we could have during Real Life look kind of like puddles.
But, listen. I will show you the mayor's version of the lakes, which really reflects his talents as former CEO of an ad agency. And then I will show you the version suggested by the Juggler Under the Overpass people. You be the judge.
And think about this. What does it say when the Juggler Under the Overpass people are the ones we have to depend on for reality?
This is the lake shown in the mayor's watercolor. See how it kind of stretches all the way across downtown. Looks really great, doesn't it?
This is what the Juggler Under the Overpass people said the lake would look like until someone finds more water to put in it. The dark blue areas are water, and the rest is dirt.
Here is another version. The sort of purple areas are where we thought water was going to be. The dark blue areas are where water really could be, assuming they can drill a well and pump enough water to get that much coverage. If the well water runs out, then presumably people would have to go out there and just run around in the dirt, but there could be a guy from the city with a hose or something.
This is the West Dallas Lake. The blue part is actual possible water.
OK, this one made me cry. This is what one of the lakes would really look like, according to the Juggler Under the Overpass people. And, like I said, I think they may be the ones we have to take seriously.