Plan 1 SM

Last night’s Preston Center Task Force meeting laid bare their purpose — development.  It’s funny how way back when, this body was begun to study traffic and parking in the Preston Center area and yet, as we’ll see, these critical concerns from neighbors have been kinda pushed into the back seat by development.

Back in February 2015, I outlined the need for a Zone Zero that would concentrate on developing the overarching calculations for what’s possible given the current infrastructure.  How could existing roads best be optimized?  What traffic patterns need to emerge? Once you’d optimized raw traffic flows, then you could measure impacts of development and resulting capacity increases against that baseline.  Roadway optimization is something that must be done before development impacts are assessed.

Last night, near the end of the meeting we saw one slide outlining the three-stage project TXDoT and NCTCOG will be embarking on IN THE FUTURE to address the optimization of traffic flow (here’s my plan from July 2015) and the central parking garage.  Their work will be barely begun as the Preston Center Task Force draws its last breath in June.  The Task Force was invited to be a part of that new project but several members responded that this “was beyond their scope of work.”

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My previous two posts covered the parking issues being raised (and how much the perception varies from reality) and St. Michael’s prayers to upzone one of their Frederick Square properties to accommodate a 250,000-square-foot office high-rise. Well, it ain’t over yet!

The other side of the complaint coin is traffic, or more specifically how much time does it take to get from Point A to Point B on Preston Road or Northwest Highway. Existing speeds for both roadways are 35 miles per hour. For example, that should translate into roughly six minutes to travel the 3.4 miles from Inwood to Shady Brook Lane along Northwest Highway without hitting a single traffic signal or slow-down. Unfortunately, you are almost guaranteed to hit a majority of the 11 traffic signals on this route, spaced on average one every 1,631 feet or 0.3 of a mile. Good luck with that!

Let’s continue the example.

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Anteks Curated not only has a gorgeous selection of gifts, but it will host the Friends of Wednesday's Child luncheon kickoff Jan. 27.

Anteks Curated not only has a gorgeous selection of gifts, but it will host the Friends of Wednesday’s Child luncheon kickoff Jan. 27.

Surely you’ve heard of the amazing nonprofit Friends of Wednesday’s Child. This group does such important work for children who are lost in the shuffle of foster families, looking for a permanent home where they can thrive. They work to improve the lives of these children through education, enrichment, and support, and they do such a wonderful job!

If you’re considering supporting an area nonprofit that is proven to change the lives of children who need it most then you’ll want to support Friends of Wednesday’s Child at their luncheon kickoff Jan. 27. Anteks Curated inside the Plaza at Preston Center will host the reception, which will have wine and hors d’oeuvres, along with the opportunity to shop the beautiful accessories and gifts inside Jason Lenox’s Park Cities outpost of his well-known store in the Design District.

So go, shop, celebrate the great work Friends of Wednesday’s Child does the with luncheon chair Cachet Weinberg and honorary luncheon chairs Amanda and Brint Ryan at Anteks Curated. All you have to do is RSVP to rsvp (at) wedchild (dot) org.