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You Wanna Tear Down Central Expressway?

On N. Central Expressway in the 1950s, looking north toward the Loop 12 overpass
On N. Central Expressway in the 1950s, looking north toward the Loop 12 overpass

Speaking of transportation and the suburbs ...

Been meaning to mention this for weeks, but Patrick Kennedy's post on the subject reminds: There's a Facebook page called Save Downtown Dallas: Tear Down Central Expressway -- a subject that's addressed from a distance in the just-adopted-by-city-council Downtown Dallas 360, actually. As in: "The Central Expressway is one example of how the freeway loop divides the CBD from adjacent districts and neighborhoods. In Deep Ellum, however, local artwork helps 'bridge' the divide. ... [But] rectifying the damage the freeways have caused to Downtown and adjacent areas is a long-term and expensive proposition." In other words: Dream and discuss all you want, it ain't happening in your lifetime. I know, I know -- and you were promised jet packs.

But the tear-down U.S. 75 discussion, along with the do away with Interstate 30 talk, does make for some interesting reading. Kennedy's been on about tearing down the freeways that "choke" downtown for year, but it's not so far-fetched an idea: National Public Radio ran a piece only a few weeks ago about how some cities, Cleveland and Seattle and New Orleans among them, are either considering or actually choosing to remove aging freeways rather than repair them. Notes All Things Considered's Dan Bobkoff, "Taking down freeways has gone mainstream," mostly due to money ... which is to say, lack of. Which doesn't stop Dallas.

I spent way too long this morning clicking through links from the Facebook page -- beginning with the most recent, posted last night, about the slice of N. Central through downtown ("between the northern terminus of Interstate 45 and the Woodall Rogers Freeway in downtown Dallas") actually known as Interstate 345. Use it in a sentence. Impress your friends.


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