DDI Job Opening: Manager – Urban Planning


Manager – Urban Planning

The Manager of Urban Planning is responsible for managing and influencing planning initiatives that impact Downtown Dallas including both public and private projects. Development of policy guidelines and recommendations for enhancement and activation of the public realm will drive Downtown Dallas, Inc. (DDI) positions and work products. The Manager of Urban Planning will report directly to the VP of Urban Design and Public Space.


Primary Job Duties:

• Review private and public developments to ensure all positively contribute to the Downtown environment

• Oversite and project management of Downtown Dallas 360 plan – mobility plan update

• Work to identify and implement component of Downtown Dallas 360 plan and CityMAP

• Oversee and manage transportation/mobility planning and partnerships/contracts for DDI

• Oversee public realm improvements including streetscapes, pedestrian enhancements, lighting, etc.

• Manage and grow DDI’s Capital Grant program

• Research and interpret City Code and other regulatory guidelines for DDI staff, members, and stakeholders

• Consult with Downtown business owners and stakeholders on regulatory approvals for developments and permits

• Develop strategies to further enhance and activate public spaces in Downtown

• Develop and implement strategies to encourage walking and cycling in Downtown

• Interface and consult with City of Dallas Bike Manager on bicycle facilities in Downtown

• Work with DDI staff to craft DDI policy statements relating to planning and development

• Navigate City Hall processes and build/maintain City relationships to help private stakeholders, developments, and projects

• Work with DART on public transportation planning in Downtown

• Compile and produce, in partnership with other DDI staff, reports relating to DDI and private development achievement tracking

• Interface with City of Dallas mobility and transportation planners on manners related to mobility, wayfinding, and transportation

• Work with City of Dallas on planning initiatives such as Neighborhood Plus, Downtown Dallas Parks Plan, Downtown Dallas 360 plan, etc.

• Work with surrounding neighborhoods to support planning in adjacent neighborhoods and enhanced physical connections between neighborhoods/districts

• Analyze existing residential trends, demands, and demographics to further development of housing policy stances that will lead to a diverse residential population


Core Competencies:

• Software: ESRI – Arc GIS, Adobe Creative Suite, Microsoft Office

• Ability to interface with property owners, residents, City staff, and elected officials

• Ability to read, interpret, and write City, State, and Federal codes and other regulatory documents

Get to Know: Black Ship Little Katana

We’re excited to announce the start of a new series we’ll publish each month highlighting a different business in Downtown Dallas. First up: Black Ship Little Katana!


A sushi concept from humble beginnings has made its way to the heart of Downtown Dallas.

What started as a kiosk in the Dallas Galleria grew to include prized sushi restaurant Little Katana in Highland Park, inspiring yet another brainchild of restaurateur Odes Kim.

Photo courtesy of: Black Ship Little Katana

Black Ship got its name from the 1852 fleet of four US Navy steamships sent to Japan to open up ports to Western trade. During the journey, the metal ships were stained black by the saltwater and called “black ships” by the Japanese.

Located near the Omni Dallas Hotel and Kay Bailey Hutchison Dallas Convention Center, Black Ship’s atmosphere echoes its namesake – lanterns adorn the ceilings and reclaimed wood panels cover the walls.

The diplomatic mission opened up all of Asia, and Black Ship’s dishes reflect the meeting of Eastern and Western flavors. Kim worked closely with manager and family friend Steven Shin to create the Asian hybrid menu.

“To me, fusion is mixing different flavors together and losing the identity of the original dish,” Shin said. “Hybrid is keeping the essential DNA, but adding a few things to Asian dishes making them more palatable to American markets.”

Photo courtesy of: Black Ship Little Katana

One of the best sellers at Black Ship is the Hot Stone Bowl. Essentially fried rice, the dish offers interactivity not traditionally available with fried rice: guests stir the flavorful rice, protein, and vegetables to achieve desired crispiness. Topped with a fried egg, the dish packs a punch unlike regular fried rice, while evoking the pleasure of instinctual and primal preparation.

While the offerings are widespread, Black Ship is known for fresh sushi and sashimi, prepared with attention to detail the way any true sushi restaurant does.

Hesitant to eat fish in a landlocked city? Shin clears the air – the fish is even fresher than coastal offerings because distributors send the freshest fish inland first. Salmon is the bestseller – Black Ship sells 60 to 80 pounds each day.

Photo courtesy of: Black Ship Little Katana

For libations, popular sakes are available, but the handcrafted cocktails are what shine. The fan-favorite Saratoga Milk Punch is a refreshing and balanced combination of rum, Thai chili peppercorn syrup, coconut milk, and vanilla.

Black Ship caters events, or will rent out its space for any occasion. In addition to the large interior, three patio rooms with climate control are available outside.

You can enjoy happy hour weekdays from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. and live jazz music from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Wednesdays. Free parking is available as well.

If you’re looking for a laid-back, urban atmosphere where everyone can find something to eat, look no further – Black Ship Little Katana has you covered.

For a chance to win a $100 gift card to Black Ship Little Katana, click here http://bit.ly/BlackShipGift and make sure you follow us (@downtown_dallas) and Black Ship Little Katana (@lkblackship) on Instagram!

To book a reservation today, call 214-760-7200.

For information on all things to eat, see, and do Downtown, visit www.downtowndallas.com. And for a comprehensive list of Downtown events, visit events.downtowndallas.com.

Black Ship Little Katana is located at:
665 South Lamar St. Suite 130
Dallas, Texas 75202

Downtown Dallas, Inc. Welcomes Amy Tharp as Chief Operating Officer


Downtown Dallas, Inc. Welcomes Amy Tharp as Chief Operating Officer

New role created as a part of DDI’s vision for the future


August 4, 2016 – Downtown Dallas, Inc. (DDI) is thrilled to announce Amy Tharp as the organization’s new Chief Operations Officer (COO).  In March of this year at DDI’s Annual Meeting, CEO John Crawford announced a transition plan that named Kourtny Garrett as President, to become President and CEO January 1, 2017, as Crawford steps into a Vice Chair role.  Along with the leadership transition, Crawford announced a strategic plan to increase the organization’s capacity, responding to the growth and evolution of Downtown Dallas.  The creation of a COO role is a part of that plan, as well as the recent announcement of the addition of Doug Prude as DDI’s Economic Development & Planning Analyst.


As COO, Tharp will work in tandem with the President and CEO to shape DDI’s strategic goals and annual work program, with a specific focus on operational execution.  She will be responsible for enhancing the organization’s processes and infrastructure, as well as serving in an external role to build public-private partnerships.  Tharp will be engaged in public policy, governmental affairs, and economic development initiatives, as well as special programs like bike share and education that enhance Downtown.


“Amy is a perfect fit for this role,” said Kourtny Garrett, President of DDI.  “From working on Capitol Hill to the Chamber and running the second largest Public Improvement District in Dallas, her background is a highly unique marriage of public policy, economic development, community-organization, and organizational administrative management.  We couldn’t be more thrilled to have her as a member of the DDI team.”


Tharp joins DDI with a Bachelor’s of Business Administration & Management Information Systems from Westminster College.  In addition to serving on McKinney Avenue Transit Authority’s Board of Directors for the past four years, she has many years of valuable work experience including time as the Dallas Regional Chamber’s Manager of Public Policy, working for two Senators in Washington, D.C., and most recently as the President & Executive Director of Uptown Dallas, Inc.  Just this year, Tharp was accepted into the Leadership Dallas class of 2016, made The Dallas Business Journal’s 2016 40 Under 40 list, was inducted into the Dallas Assembly, and also welcomed a baby boy with her husband.


“I love what we were accomplishing in Uptown, and the opportunity to continue advocating for urban improvements is exciting.  Momentum is building in Downtown, and there’s never been a better time to be a part of the team making it happen,” said Tharp.



About Downtown Dallas, Inc.
Downtown Dallas, Inc. is the primary advocate, champion, and steward for Downtown, effecting change by developing  strategies, setting targets, and mobilizing resources that:


  • Stimulate a vibrant and sustainable Downtown environment
  • Improve infrastructure
  • Enhance economic competitiveness
  • Create a culturally inclusive urban center
  • Position the area as a global destination


Our program areas include: public safety; capital improvements; maintenance; economic development; public policy; planning/transportation; and marketing.  For more information, visit www.downtowndallas.com



Megan Spooner, Marketing Manager
d: 214.744.6651  c: 214.862.4537



New Resource Launched To Help Downtown Dallas by Downtown Resident

Contact: 682-207-8419


For immediate release

New Resource Launched To Help Downtown Dallas

Small Businesses Start And Grow

Dallas, TX (August 3, 2016) – The Small Business Development Initiative (SBDI), an innovative, new

initiative to assist small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs for starting and growing small businesses

launched programming with local representation in Downtown Dallas today. Small businesses are a critical

component and major contributor to the strength of local economies. In fact, since 1995, small

businesses have generated 64% of new jobs but most resources to help small business owners are

considered inaccessible, impractical, or too expensive.

According to the United States Small Business Administration (SBA), two primary reasons for small business

failure is a lack of business planning and inadequate access to business credit and funding. The SBDI

focuses on these two areas at no cost to qualified participants as funding is provided through a combination

of grants and sponsorships. With access to a minimum of $100,000 of business credit/funding for every

participant, the initiative is positioned to become a critical resource for small businesses in America.

The free SBDI program includes a local Downtown Dallas representative, Ashley D. Stanley, and provides a

turn-key solution for qualified participants including:

 assistance in developing a written business plan;

 guidance in producing monthly financial statements with a volunteer Chief Financial Officer; and

 accessing business credit and cash funding based solely on the company’s EIN without personal

guarantees or use of the owner’s personal credit.

Unlike other governmental and private resources available, the SBDI will assist, at no cost, a wider variety of

businesses without regard to industry, location or stage of business development:

1. Stage One: Existence (key issues include formation, access to business credit, compliance, etc.)

2. Stage Two: Survival (key issues include cash flow and development of clients)

3. Stage Three: Success (key issues including transitioning owner’s role from day to day “working” to


4. Stage Four: Take-Off (key issue again is having adequate financial resources to grow/expand)

5. Stage Five: Resource Maturity


The Small Business Development Initiative (SBDI) was created through the Business Credit Literacy

Initiative. Visit http://www.businesscreditliteracy.org for more information or to get involved.

July 12th Traffic Update

Due to the Presidential visit and police memorial service at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center, expect road closures in the Dallas Arts District area on Tuesday, July 12th between 5:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Consider alternative routes to gain access to your office or residence.  No additional information is available.

Despite delays and road closures, Downtown businesses are open and we encourage you to support them.

Press Release: Dallas County Buildings to Open Monday, July 11, 2016

Please note this most recent information regarding Downtown traffic operations for Monday, July 11. Here is a link with a map of street closures and traffic circulation plans, http://www.dallascitynews.net/downtown-dallas-traffic-update. Below is a release from Dallas County regarding the opening of several County buildings. We will continue to keep you apprised as we receive updates.

July 10, 2016
Press Release: Dallas County Buildings to Open Monday, July 11, 2016
Dallas – The following county buildings will be open for business on Monday, July 11, 2016:

George L. Allen Sr. Civil Courts Bldg.
600 Commerce St.
Dallas, Texas 75202

Old Red Museum
100 S. Houston St.
Dallas, Texas 75202

Dallas County Administration Bldg.
411 Elm St.
Dallas, Texas 75202

Dallas County Records Building
509 Main St.
Dallas, Texas 75202

All of the above buildings will be open for regular business hours. Jurors summoned to George Allen for jury duty are expected to report for service as specified by the instructions on the original notice they received in the mail.

Contact: Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins