Enhanced Services from Downtown Dallas, Inc.

Downtown Dallas, Inc. (DDI) continues to observe, listen, and respond to the needs and concerns of Downtown. The below highlights are enhancements to DDI services that have already been implemented or will be implemented next week.

PUBLIC SAFETY + HOMELESS OUTREACH

  • Daily hours for the Downtown Safety Patrol are from 6:30 a.m. – 11:00 p.m. DDI is providing additional security coverage at Main Street Garden, Belo Garden, and Pegasus Plaza from 9:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. at each location (168 hours of weekly additional security presence).
  • There is now a dedicated off-duty DPD officer at Main Street Garden daily (four-hour shifts / 28 hours per week).  Also, DDI is providing additional DPD patrols and resources weekly in Downtown.  As a reminder, DDI already funds off-duty DPD officers seven days a week from 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 p.m.
  • City of Dallas Park Department has increased their deployment of Park Rangers to provide additional patrols throughout Downtown parks.
  • Safety Patrol is adding 18 new full-time security professionals.
  • Homeless Outreach Team has grown to three members (Manager, Coordinator, and Street Outreach Specialist). This team dedicates over 80 hours a week to meaningful engagements with individuals experiencing homelessness. Within the last 45 – 60 days, DDI’s outreach team has successfully connected 17 individuals experiencing homelessness to long-term service recovery programs.
  • We have launched the Homeless Fellowship Program by hiring an individual who is sheltered at The Bridge Transitional Unit as an independent contractor to join the DDI Street Outreach Team during engagements with shelter-resistant individuals.
  • DDI continues to work with the City, surrounding neighborhoods, and scooter operators to address concerns related to scooter operations throughout the area. DDI is hopeful that additional information regarding scooter operations will be communicated next week.

CLEANING + MAINTENANCE

  • Daily hours for the Clean Team are 6:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
  • Clean Team has added three new full-time positions.
  • Clean Team continues to provide sanitization of high-touch items in the public space and parks such as tables, benches, playgrounds, and trash receptacles.
  • DDI is providing funding to double the frequency of our power washing contractors’ efforts, and will be purchasing additional power washing equipment for Clean Team to begin utilizing on an on-call basis starting in September. As a reminder, DDI already provides over 250,000 square feet of power washing each month; this enhancement will ensure roughly 500,000 square feet of sidewalks are washed monthly. Pressure washing services are provided throughout Downtown with a focus on pedestrian corridors. Additionally, Clean Team will begin daily washing of hot spots as needed.
  • DDI has purchased and is installing 16 park rules signs that are being deployed to Pacific Plaza, Main Street Garden, Pegasus Plaza, and Belo Garden. Expect to see increased enforcement of park rules.

These are just a few of the enhanced services you will see from DDI immediately. Stay tuned for more information on upcoming plans and enhanced programs next week! As always, report issues as you see them right from your phone on the See Say Now app, available on Android and iPhone. You can also reach dispatch at 214.741.1151. Have ideas or feedback? Email us at info@downtowndallas.com.

Downtown Dallas, Inc. Welcomes New Hire Matt Thomas

Matt Thomas Headshot 2017

Downtown Dallas, Inc. (DDI) warmly welcomes Matt Thomas to its team as Communications Director.  In this position, Matt will oversee the organization’s content creation, communications, media relations programs, and community relationships.

Matt Thomas has worked as a broadcast journalist in Dallas/Fort Worth for more than a decade.  His career started right out of high school with internships at two radio stations.  He then moved to New York City, where he attended college and spent time interning at some of the biggest radio stations and network news operations in the country.  Matt returned to North Texas, where he continued his broadcast career as an airborne traffic reporter and news anchor at local radio stations.  In 2005, he accepted a position as a full-time street reporter and anchor at the NewsRadio station in Houston.  There, he covered several high-profile stories, including all of the Enron fraud and conspiracy trial, the Andrea Yates murder retrial, and Hurricanes Rita and Katrina.  Matt spent weeks covering the aftermath of Katrina by providing live reports to listeners from New Orleans.

He returned to North Texas in late 2006 to accept a position at KRLD radio and the Texas State Network.  Matt’s street reporting, anchoring, and leadership skills in his more than a decade at the station resulted in numerous Texas Associated Press Broadcasters and Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards for excellence in journalism.  Most recently, he was named “Best Reporter” by the Texas AP Broadcasters and he received the prestigious Charles E. Green award by the Headliners Foundation of Texas for his on-scene coverage of the deadly attack on police officers in Dallas in July 2016.

Matt is now transitioning to his new role as Communications Director for DDI. “I can’t think of a better way to continue to share stories that have an impact than joining the DDI team and using new media platforms to highlight the great things that are happening in Downtown Dallas and the surrounding districts,” Matt said.

Matt produced and hosted more than 200 original shows in conjunction with DDI and former CEO and current Vice Chairman John Crawford during a critical period of transition for the city’s core.  Each Sunday on KRLD, Pulse of the City highlighted an area of Downtown Dallas experiencing new development and activity.  “Downtown Dallas and the neighboring districts have come such a long way in my time here, and it is absolutely thrilling to be here to help DDI and this tremendous staff share all the great things that are happening now and are yet to come,” Thomas said.

Matt grew up in the Denton area, and has always had a great love for the buildings that make up what USA Today has named the “Best International Skyline.”  In addition to storytelling and Downtown, Matt is passionate about golf, the Texas Rangers, and animal rescue operations in North Texas.  For the past several years, he has helped emcee the annual “Basset Shuffle” event benefitting North Texas Basset Hound Rescue.  In addition to his three rescue dogs, Matt has a wife and toddler who are the joys of his life.