Once More, Crawling Back Down Into the Downtown Tunnels Dallas Loves to Hate to Love

The poor Dallas Pedestrian Network, otherwise known as Vincent Ponte's downtown tunnels and skyways. So unloved, so unwanted -- and if you believe the Downtown Dallas 360 plan (not to mention Laura Miller and Mary Suhm and Jack Gosnell), the leading cause of the death of downtown. Hence the closed-door meeting written about in this morning's News: "A tunnel task force had its first meeting recently to begin a discussion -- and eventually reach a conclusion -- about what to do with the underground."

Nothing's been decided; we're a long way from that. They'll walk and talk the tunnel for a long while yet; I've been told a final decision about what to do with the tunnels is a good two years off. But, of course, there was that note in the 1401 Elm Street plans: "Tunnel access to be closed off per city 2013." Which, despite what the head of the Office of Economic Development said, feels pretty ... definitive.

And, that reminds me: Noah Jeppson, our Friend responsible for the map of the Dallas Pedestrian Network due sooner than later, has a new pet project (I mean, in addition to PARK(ing) Day): a Facebook page to Save the Downtown Tunnels. (Update: Noah wrote this morning to correct me: Corey Rawdon, another downtown resident, is responsible for the Facebook page.) Wrote Rawdon by way of introduction a couple of weeks ago:

The tunnels have received a lot of press recently both from supporters who love and frequent them and from those who oppose them and would like to shut them down. Help us spread the word about the tunnels and show your support by joining this page! Together we can help influence and educate those who feel that the tunnels are not a valuable part of life for downtown residents and employees alike.

And for those who've never visited the tunnels, Noah's put together quite the slide show, which, whenever I look at it and the old map, all I can think is: Carousel is a lie! There is no renewal!

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