Monday, May 7, 2012

When Sprawl is Denser than the City


You may have seen the IH-345 tear-out presentation I gave to the CNU-NTX chapter.  The above image is the study area in question, immediately adjacent to downtown Dallas.  It consists of 245 acres of land.  On these 245 acres, the city of Dallas receives a measly $3.5 million in tax revenue per year.  The reason?  It's mostly vacant land, parking lots, and right-of-way.  On these 245 acres, there is only $19.9 million in improvements within the study area.  That equates to $80,000 per acre.  In other words, that is one small cottage (or IKEA prefab house) per acre of land.  No wonder so many of the office towers went belly up.

Taking out this section of freeway opens up over 180+ acres of land for redevelopment.  64 of which is currently public right-of-way.  118 is parking lots and vacant land, ie highest and best use of freeway adjacent land according to the market.  Evidence of a dysfunctional system.

Downtown land is less valuable than sprawl.  And it's because of the inner city highways.