John Scovell

  • Blogs

    May 3, 2013

    Six Years Later, Reunion Tower Observation Deck to Reopen With a New Look

    Reunion Tower will finally be reopening "soon," with a slew of renovations planned to make it bigger and glossier. Judy Pesek, a partner at the design firm responsible for the project, laid out the planned renovations to a crowd gathered on the tower's observation deck. The renovations will include ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 2, 2012

    Why Wait for Mike Rawlings' Trinity Toll Road Speech When We Know What He'll Say?

    Yesterday Joe told you that Mike Rawlings, our mayor, is having a press conference today to announce how he feels about the Trinity River Toll Road. So guess who's got to go to the damn thing at 12:30? OK, OK, I'm doin' it. Wow, everybody doesn't just need to get in a big huge wad about it. I'll g ... More >>

  • Blogs

    March 23, 2011

    At Last Night's Debate, David Kunkle Wasn't About to Let Mike Rawlings Steal His Script

    Photo by Sam MertenLeft to right: Mayoral candidates Mike Rawlings, Edward Okpa, Ron Natinsky and David Kunkle​Former Dallas Police Chief David Kunkle came out swinging at Tuesday evening's mayoral debate at the Fairmont Hotel, with most of his barbs aimed at ex-Pizza Hut CEO Mike Rawlings. Th ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 8, 2010

    "Dallas Tomorrow" Scheduled for August 3

    The Trinity Trust​I know, I know -- it's a few weeks off. Still, write it down in your Trapper Keeper: Beginning at 5 p.m. that Tuesday, the Dallas Bar Association's Public Forum Committee is holding a three-hour what's-up-Dallas at the Belo Mansion featuring quite the foursome: Mayor Tom Leppert, ... More >>

  • News

    October 1, 2009
  • Blogs

    September 16, 2009

    While Breaking Ground for Convention Center Hotel, Mayor Tom Leppert Unveils Updated Design and Becomes Bellhop for a Day

    Sam MertenCaption contest!It took Mayor Tom Leppert approximately two years to accomplish what no one else in Dallas could: begin building a convention center hotel. And hundreds of assorted politicos, city officials, business leaders and supporters were on hand Tuesday afternoon at the site of the ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 10, 2009

    Vacant Buildings Downtown Still Vacant. But At Least Now They Belong to Someone Else.

    1604 Main Street, now off the market​Eleven months ago, Mayor Tom Leppert gathered the media beneath 1604 Main Street to detail his plan for dealing with 36 vacant buildings downtown. We've spilled plenty of virtual ink documenting the doings with two of the more high-profile properties, but this ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 1, 2009

    The Mayor and His Pro-Hotel Friends Want You to Vote No Early Because "The Future of Dallas is in Our Hands Right Now"

    In my inbox this morning, I received an e-mail from the Vote No! group, who are packaging Proposition 1 and 2 together. For those needing clarification, Proposition 1 will approve a charter amendment prohibiting the city from "owning, financing, constructing, or operating a hotel or other lodging f ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 28, 2009

    Citizens Council President Says Trinity Vote Was About Whether There Would Be a Toll Road at All, Not Keeping it Outside the Levees

    As we mentioned yesterday, tomorrow's cover story in the paper version of Unfair Park features Mayor Tom Leppert. One of the more fascinating interviews we grabbed while researching the piece was with former city council member Donna Halstead, who since 1998 has been president of the Dallas Citizens ... More >>

  • Blogs

    January 15, 2009

    Ann Margolin Leads the Pack As City's Finance Report Deadline Looms

    As we mentioned a while back, District 13 city council candidate Ann Margolin appeared to be the heir apparent to Mitchell Rasansky with a long list of notable supporters and a strong résumé. And as the 5 p.m. deadline approaches for candidates and committees to file their finance reports, Margoli ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 11, 2008

    Who Doesn't Have Something at Arts Magnet With Their Name On It?

    During today's closed-door meeting of the Dallas Independent School District board, the trustees will tell superintendent Michael Hinojosa whether or not they, ya know, trust the dude. As in: The board will "deliberate the appointment, employment, evaluation, reassignment, duties, discipline, or di ... More >>

  • Blogs

    November 20, 2008

    Post-Makeover, Union Station's Reincarnated in Wolfgang Puck's Image

    Patrick Michels Mayor Tom Leppert and City Council Member Sheffie Kadane tenderly declare Union Station open for business. After a $23-million renovation, Union Station is back in business downtown, this time as a Wolfgang Puck-catered feed lot for hungry Hyatt guests. The 93-year-old building has ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 28, 2008

    A Really Long Post About Last Week’s Council Meeting. Worth Reading, Though. Swear.

    Brian Harkin John Wiley Price and John Scovell showed up last week to defend Mayor Leppert’s hotel, but it was council member Vonciel Jones Hill who stole the show. At last week’s meeting, the city council approved selling bonds to refinance the convention center and spending another $4 million ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 27, 2008

    Friends of Unfair Park: Your Morning Cup of Joe

    Those who know me from my days at Dallas Blog might be familiar with a semi-regular segment I introduced called “Virtual Coffee.” The idea -- linking to stuff around the Web and providing commentary -- was hardly original, but I hoped it would provide an outlet to quick-hit items that either I d ... More >>

  • News

    October 16, 2008

    DISD Parents Unite and Take Back Your Schools From the Money Guys.

    Despite the $84 million shortfall and the axing of 550 teachers, it's business as usual at DISD headquarters

  • Blogs

    October 6, 2008

    How to Get Big Business Interested in DISD: Threaten Its Bond Money.

    Jack Lowe, DISD school board president For eight months, while the Dallas Independent School District was fiddling its way into financial conflagration, we heard radio silence from the business community. But now the Dallas Citizens Council and chambers of commerce are suddenly flapping around like ... More >>

  • Blogs

    September 30, 2008

    Good Lord, Who Isn't Supporting Ann Margolin's Bid for City Council?

    Ann Margolin Sure, the city council elections are still more than seven months away, but candidates are starting to file, and none may be more significant than Ann Margolin. After spending a year on the Dallas Park and Recreation Board representing District 13, Margolin quit the board and filed to r ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 15, 2008

    For Better or Best, Dallas Citizens Council Opens the Book on Its Past

    Last December at the annual meeting of the Dallas Citizens Council -- a private, sometimes secretive body long powerful in local affairs -- outgoing president John Scovell said, “We’re changing back to the good old days.” He was talking about Tom Leppert getting elected mayor, among other thin ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 25, 2008
  • Blogs

    June 16, 2008

    Woodbine to Get Convention Center Hotel Deal This A.M. (OK, Maybe)

    Daniel Rodrigue Look, we all know Ray Hunt's 33-percent chance is a little better than most folks' 33-percent chance. Good God, just look at all the things on the city council's Economic Development Committee agenda for this morning -- so many items, matter of fact, that there's even a caveat: "Ite ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 16, 2008

    A Peek Inside the Ugly Convention Center Hotel Bidding Process

    Ray Garfield As mentioned earlier this morning, the city council’s Economic Development Committee will name the convention center hotel developer today -- behind closed doors in executive session, the Dallas way. And, yes, odds are it'll be Woodbine Development emerging from those closed doors as ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 5, 2008

    "Puck at Reunion Tower"? Now, We Like the Sound of That.

    Daniel Rodrigue Ray Hunt, whispering sweet nothings into the ear of his new favorite chef, Wolfgang Puck, at today's press conference at Union Station. For more photos from today's event, check out our slideshow. The announcement today of the partnership between Hyatt Regency Dallas, Woodbine Devel ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 3, 2008

    Because Anything's Gotta Be Better Than Antares, Right?

    Hyatt Regency Dallas Does this have anything to do with some city council members' reluctance to tear down Reunion Arena? We're clearing the schedule Thursday morning -- hard not to when you receive word that at 10:30 in the a.m., John Scovell (big bossman at Ray Hunt's Woodbine Development Corpor ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 2, 2008

    Kicking a Dead Horse: Just Why's the City Council Trying to Save Reunion Arena, Anyway?

    Hey, take a close look at the ridiculous grand-standing going on over Reunion Arena, and then ask yourself the key question about our city council: Would I buy a used car from these guys? Led by Ron Natinsky, who's calling for a special meeting next week, and Dwaine Caraway, the majority on the cou ... More >>

  • News

    March 27, 2008

    The Dwaine Caraway Show

    Starring that new breed of politician who wants to root out your crack houses, close down your whorehouses and pull up your pants

  • Blogs

    November 6, 2007

    Drunk on Victory, At a Price

    Might as well learn to live and love the Balanced Vision Plan. Almost there: 383 precincts in now, and Mayor Tom's got 40,983 out of the 77,296 votes cast. Which leaves a mere 36,313 for Angela Hunt. And only 17 precincts left to go. It's over: The Trinity River toll road wins. By 10 miles. Matt ta ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 18, 2007

    Hey, Blow, We're So Done Doing Your Homework

    I swore to myself Tuesday I wasn’t going to get into any more intimate blog-a-logs with Steve Blow at The Dallas Morning News. I've had enough; you probably have too. But I guess I can’t ignore this. Again. I have the cover story in this week’s paper version of Unfair Park quoting a 5-year-o ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 15, 2007

    You, Me & Dupree

    You need more Scovells? We got 'em! Meet Dupree, who does not need a couch upon which to crash. I sit up in the cheap seats in the city council chamber collecting the political equivalent of sports trivia. This week I was there waiting for an item to come up when a handsome young fellow with a famil ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 26, 2007

    Is it Too Late to Give Tom Leppert a Nickname?

    Tom Leppert prepares for a mayoral forum. We are so kidding. Or...are we? I attended mayoral forum other night at Paul Quinn College, where about 100 students and faculty gathered to hear the candidate posse tell their stories. I had been away from the forum scene for a while, and things have change ... More >>

  • News

    April 19, 2007

    Don't You Wish Your Mayor Was Hot Like Me

    Dallas' mayoral wannabes are all nice guys. Where's the fun in that?

  • Blogs

    November 27, 2006

    News Hard on Preston Hollow. Finally.

    A federal judge recently found the principal of a North Dallas elementary school guilty of 1940s-style racial and ethnic segregation. In a civil suit, Judge Sam Lindsay ruled that Preston Hollow Principal Teresa Parker had systematically herded black and Latino kids into segregated classrooms to app ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 22, 2006

    Bond Girl

    So, about that Mary Suhm speech to the members of DowntownDallas this afternoon at the DP&L Flats... In short, the city manager explained, over a lunch of miso soup and dry chicken and cookies, that it's going to cost some $477,185,913 to complete the downtown initiatives that are now part of the 20 ... More >>

  • News

    October 27, 2005

    Spike Dance

    The Hunt Oil people were shakin' their booties at City Hall last week

  • Culture

    March 4, 1999

    Pickin' Cotton

    While Dallas fools around with the Olympics, the Cotton Bowl crumbles

  • News

    October 15, 1998

    The Race Not Run

    Republican Bill Hill is running against Democrat Rick Reed for district attorney. Don't think you have a choice.

  • News

    December 18, 1997

    Mr. Mayor, Meet Your Nightmare

    Frustrated, fed up, and ready to fight, Laura Miller trades muckraking for a run at City Hall

  • News

    December 4, 1997
  • News

    November 27, 1997

    Bad boys

    The voters could care less. But someone's gotta win the runoff for the last lowly DISD board seat

  • News

    November 20, 1997

    One Fine Mess

    Elected by no one, John Scovell and a clique of Dallas business leaders brought you DISD's most infamous cast of characters: Yvonne Gonzalez, Dan Peavy, Bill Keever, and Sandy Kress. Thanks a lot.

  • News

    March 6, 1997

    Chaos theory

    A politically dysfunctional DISD board heads into a May election that's looking so scary, few voters or contributors want to go near it

  • News

    June 27, 1996

    Leave it to Keever

    DISD's new leader has ambition and ideas--if anybody'd let him finish a meeting

  • News

    April 6, 1995

    Who ya gonna call?

    City Hall's top brass use taxpayer-provided mobile phones to call sweethearts, power brokers, and Pizza Hut.

  • News

    March 9, 1995

    Desperate dealing

    City scrambles to finance arena privately--and steal racetrack back from Fort Worth

  • News

    January 26, 1995

    The racer's edge

    Hunt alliance gives weaker track developer big edge

  • News

    January 5, 1995

    The Arena Papers

    Inside the secret City Hall files: A tale of dupes and deception