This has got to be some sort of a Texas State Fair related joke. The Dallas County Commissioners apparently want a new attraction, a 21st Century version of the famous Ferris Wheel at Fair Park, in downtown Dallas. They want to construct a huge rotating obervatory in Founders Plaza, to sit on top of the parking garage built under the plaza in 2008. Supposedly engineers for the plan say it can be supported. The “huge rotating observatory” enthusiasts says this is what cool cities like London and Paris, maybe Vienna, have.
OK, so we have no money for basic city services, we had to cut services and raise taxes last year. Remember September ’10 when the Dallas City Council voted 8-7 to increase the property tax rate by more than 6.5 percent to fund millions of dollars in street maintenance, park upkeep, recreation center programs and a host of other services? Just last month, the Dallas County Commissioners approved a pared-down budget for next fiscal year that has no tax increase in it, but chopped more than 150 positions, popped higher health insurance fees on employees, and offered no pay raises. The $486 million operating budget for the 2012 is 1.6 percent smaller than the current budget.
Remember the bond forfeitures? Dallas county has failed to collect millions in unpaid court judgments, never bothered to assess interest on forfeited bonds, and then charges bondsmen way cheap rates (compared to neighboring communities) for court fees.
But we need a Ferris Wheel?
This is the United States, not Europe, in the 21st century where, if someone is injured on this 21st Century contraption, they sue the city.
This is just ridiculous and I urge everyone to voice their opinion. How will this contraption make downtown Dallas a better place to live? Improve real estate values? It won’t. Better transportation, parking, not so many dang one-way streets, and planning will.
So fess up, this was really an early April Fools joke, right?
Thank God: Commissioners still need approval from the city Landmark Commission. That phone number is 214.670.4538. Speak up now, or we’ll be paying more in taxes for this thing come 2012.
— Daily Local Real Estate Dish By Dallas Real Estate Insider — Candy Evans at CandysDirt.com