Downtown Dallas, Inc. (DDI) is a private, non-profit organization funded through voluntary membership dues, assessment revenue from the Downtown Improvement District (DID), and contracts with the City of Dallas for specific projects and programs.
The Dallas Downtown Improvement District (DID) was created by DDI in June of 1992 to fund important supplemental services and visible improvements to our city center. In 2001, 2005, and 2013, the DID was voted by property owners to be renewed, and has since embarked upon additional initiatives to make Downtown Dallas clean, safe, and fun for the entire community. The DID has been renewed through 2020.
As part of the approved capital improvements program in the 2017 DID budget, DDI is soliciting proposals for projects to improve public spaces throughout Downtown. If selected, proposed projects will receive a matching grant reimbursement from DDI in an amount up to $25,000.
The 2016 Capital Grant Matching Program was a success, supporting several beautification and enhancement projects within the public realm of Downtown. Examples include sidewalk repairs and building entrance improvements at 1555 Elm Street and tree grate repairs near Bank of America Plaza.
DDI is seeking proposals for projects that will enhance the appearance, safety, and functional quality of public spaces throughout Downtown. Projects should address the “transformative strategies” found in Chapter 6 (“Implementation”) of the 2011 Downtown Dallas 360 plan, a City Council-adopted policy document that guides future development and investment in Downtown; access the plan at www.downtowndallas360.com. Projects must demonstrate public benefit and must result in tangible, permanent improvements. The following project types will qualify for the 2017 Matching Grant Program:
- Security Project: the project will improve public security, help deter crime, and enhance the perception of public safety
- Pedestrian Enhancement Project: the project will increase pedestrian safety and comfort in the public right-of-way
- Appearance Project: the project will improve the outward appearance of a building or public space
All proposed projects must occur within the DID boundaries.
All proposed projects must be planned, constructed, and completed by the applicant. DDI is not responsible for the completion of any proposed projects awarded matching grant funds.
If all or part of the proposed project is to be constructed on private property, the applicant must have the signed approval of the owner or owner’s agent or specific evidence that such approval has been granted prior to the award of grant funds. Projects on public property may be submitted without formal approval of the relevant public agency, but the potential of obtaining such approval will be considered by DDI.
All applicants will be required to indemnify DDI and the City of Dallas against all claims. In addition, liability insurance for the applicant, landlord, and contractors (as appropriate) will be required for proposed construction projects. A Certificate of Liability Insurance must be submitted to DDI listing DDI and the City of Dallas as additional insured entities prior to the disbursement of grant funds.
DDI is committed to meeting the City of Dallas Good Faith Effort Plan, in which qualified minority- and women-owned business enterprises (M/WBEs) are involved, to the greatest extent possible, in construction or professional services contracts. Project proposals should strive to include up to 25 percent participation from certified M/WBEs in the City of Dallas. Upon request, DDI will supply a list of certified M/WBE contractors to those applicants wanting to meet the Good Faith Effort Plan.
DDI will accept multiple proposals per year from each qualified applicant. However, the grand total of grant funding an applicant can receive each year will be no more than $25,000.
Proposed projects must be consistent with the design guidelines found in Chapter 4 (“Transformative Strategies”) of the Downtown Dallas 360 plan. Before commencing construction, projects may be required to undergo a design review with the City of Dallas and DDI.
Compliance with Laws and Regulations
Proposed projects should comply with all federal, state, and local laws, ordinances, rules, and regulations. The applicant shall obtain all required local, state, and federal permits prior to commencing construction. DDI is not responsible for obtaining any required permits for the proposed project.
Grant funds provided by DDI will be less than or equal to 50 percent of all costs related to the proposed project, including actual costs of supplies, materials, construction, labor, and associated taxes. Grant awards will range from $1,000 to $25,000 per project. DDI reserves the right to modify grant award amounts to meet program budget requirements; therefore, applicants may be offered an amount less than 50 percent of total project costs.
Projects must be completed no later than six months after the execution of the Grant Fulfillment Agreement. Projects judged to have been substantially complete before January 1 will not be considered.
Once the project has been completed, and the applicant has submitted all required documentation, DDI will reimburse the applicant with its mutually-agreed upon share of grant funds.
To be considered for an award, applicants must complete the application form, limiting responses to the space provided, except where additional materials are specifically requested. Complete proposals must contain all information and materials requested in the Proposal Contents Checklist (see below). Incomplete proposals will not be considered. Proposals will be reviewed for required documentation upon submittal; it is recommended that each proposal be submitted prior to the deadline to ensure that it is complete and will be accepted.
Proposals for the 2017 Matching Grants Program must be submitted by March 24, 2017.
Proposals must be emailed (preferred) to email@example.com or sent to:
Downtown Dallas, Inc.
Attn: Jacob Browning, Urban Planning Manager
Bank of America Plaza
901 Main Street, Suite 7100
Dallas, Texas 75202
Proposal Contents Checklist
- Complete 2017 Matching Grants Program Application
- Map of proposed project location
- Signed approval from the owner (or agent) of property upon which the project will be constructed (if applicable)
- Certificate of Liability Insurance
- Budget Summary (to include job estimates or quotes, if available)
- Copies of acquired permits and/or approvals (if applicable)
- Color photographs of the project area
- Schematic drawings of proposed project
All proposals will be submitted to the DDI Capital Improvements Committee for review and final approval of grant award recipients. No Committee member with a vested interest in a proposal will be allowed to participate in discussions or votes concerning that proposal.
The Capital Improvements Committee will review all qualified proposals and make a final decision regarding grant recipients within one month of the application deadline. The Capital Improvements Committee reserves the right to reject any or all proposals or to approve only a portion of the requested funds.
Finalizing the Grant
Following grant approval, individual grant awards are considered pending until the applicant and DDI sign a Grant Fulfillment Agreement. The Agreement will describe the project, the project budget, and the amount of funding awarded by DDI. Upon execution of the Agreement, the grant is considered finalized and grant funds may be distributed based upon the conditions outlined in the Agreement.
For more information regarding the 2017 Matching Grants Program, contact Jacob Browning at (214) 744-1270 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The urban core of the city has come a long way, and with new projects in the works the progress doesn’t seem to be coming to a halt this year.
On Monday, March 6, we will once again bring well over 1,000 business leaders, residents,
community organizations, and the public sector together at the Downtown Dallas, Inc. (DDI) Annual Meeting with one common interest: Downtown Dallas. This year’s theme may seem simple, “Great Strides,” but those two words encompass a remarkable amount of progress in the heart of our city, along with what we know is coming soon. It’s a play on words describing progress. Great strides are being made with transformative plans like high-speed rail, CityMAP, and 360; infrastructure projects like streetcar and a subway; and more than 100 developments (meaning countless cranes) under way. The theme also is a quip referring to street-level improvements like parks, bike lanes, and walkability improvements that give us even more reason to stride.
Since 2000, we’ve experienced $5 billion of investment in the city center through a variety of residential, hotel, commercial office, and public projects. Nearly 11,000 residents live in the center of downtown, where in 1996 only the 200 living in Manor House apartments called this area home. Within a two and a half mile radius, 50,000 now live, and over 7,000 units are under construction with another 6,400 impending.
Downtown’s employment base and office market remains strong with over 135,000 employees and positive net absorption in 2016. AT&T was a significant retention (and expansion) headline toward the end of last year, and work to advance the AT&T Discovery District will continue into this spring.
Over 100 restaurants and bars opened last year or have been announced to open this year, adding to the 420 already filling our bellies. Fifteen hotels are either announced or under construction, with four more that have opened in the last year. Retail is taking hold as well, with over 200 places to shop in the greater urban core. The opening of Forty Five Ten at the end of 2016 made headlines, and just last month another anchor in the Dallas Farmers Market, Urban Farmhouse Designs, was announced. Four additional large format grocery stores are on the way, and in the center of downtown we anticipate several announcements of unique smaller urban concepts this year—stay tuned.
No doubt the development numbers are impressive and are making national headlines. But what is it that knits our community together? What fills the voids between buildings and defines downtown as a neighborhood and no longer just an office park? In our 2017 DDI priorities, we call this fostering complete neighborhoods. It’s the destinations that unite those working in towers, living in lofts, and visiting our city. It’s our parks, public places, art, and cultural spaces. It’s schools and vibrant streets. And there are great strides to talk about here as well. Today, 52 acres of parks and public greenspace exist in downtown. The parks prioritized in the Downtown Parks Master Plan will add or improve another 17 acres. Our city is connected by nearly 150 miles of bike lanes and trails today, with over 50 miles funded and on the way. CityLab High School, downtown’s new public high school focused on design and community engagement, will commence classes this fall. And our higher education institutions, UNT School of Law, El Centro Community College, and Texas A&M Commerce continue to thrive and grow their urban campuses.
Trends worth noting
Reflecting on 2016, a few trends emerged that we expect will continue strong into this year.
New construction. In 2016, the last of our most challenging redevelopment projects traded, which means of the 40 vacant buildings we began with 20 years ago, only a handful remain and they are all in development. The Statler will begin opening its first phases in just a few months. Dallas High School/Crozier Tech and the West End Marketplace/Factory Six03 are moving quickly toward their new lives as prime office space. The Butler Brothers building is now leasing apartments, and 1401 Elm/The Drever construction progresses with recent announcements such as their hotel, Thompson Dallas Hotel. With the era of adaptive reuse coming to a close, we anticipate a surge in new construction, already indicated on the northern side of downtown along Klyde Warren Park and Ross Avenue. Vacant parcels and parking lots will begin to infill with mixed-use, high-density projects, making areas like the southern areas of downtown ripe for development.
Commercial office re-dos. Last year, several commercial office towers began massive improvements, from building infrastructure to transforming ground floors to engage with the street. Projects like Thanksgiving Tower, 2100 Ross, 400 Record, 717 Harwood, Bank of America Plaza, Ross Tower, and St. Paul Place are embracing the desires of today’s office worker—open floorplans, coworking space, and ground floor amenities shared with the public. And this year, we expect more to follow, like the announcements of renovations at Chase Tower and Trammell Crow Center.
Innovation industries. A third trend reinforced in 2016 that will carry into this year is the growing strength of innovation industries. Whether tech, startup, or a variety of coworking options, more than 350,000 square feet of commercial office space is inhabited by this sector. In fact, at DDI we see this as such an important factor in downtown Dallas’ future that we have adopted it into our mission: foster innovation and technology in all aspects of the urban experience.
Focus on mobility
Last year, we also spent a great amount of time on the update of the 360 plan. Building on the transformative strategies from the original plan adopted by the Dallas City Council in 2011, including housing, transportation, urban design, parks, and public space, the update will first set urban mobility principles to guide current and future local, regional, and state planning. Drafted in partnership with more than 40 local organizations and with input from more than 1,000 touch points through community partners and stakeholders, those guiding principles include:
- Create a balanced multimodal system that can support transit, bicycles, and pedestrians in addition to automobiles.
- Provide a system that does not require a car for short trips, while ensuring that the system is safe, well-lit, comfortable, and accessible for a diverse base of users.
- Improve inter-district connectivity for all modes of travel.
- Encourage mixed-use, pedestrian-oriented design and development.
- Ensure that both regional and local transportation systems support urban design and livability goals for Greater Downtown Dallas.
- Deliver a system that responds proactively to future trends in technology, demographics, and user preferences.
Ultimately, this spring the plan will deliver a pragmatic guide to improve connectivity between our intown neighborhoods, whether walking, biking, using public transportation, or driving, while also delivering vibrancy, continuity, and a “sense of place” at the street level. It will address mobility balance for every street in the urban core, and identify improvements to key connections with close-in neighborhoods.
Very much related, work continues on transportation and mobility issues significant to downtown like streetcar, bike plan implementation and expansion, the DART subway alignment, high-speed rail, and CityMAP.
Downtown Dallas, Inc. (DDI) is excited to announce its 2017 Annual Meeting Presented by HKS, Inc. Our Annual Meeting will be held on March 6, 2017, from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at the Omni Dallas Hotel.
This year we are thrilled to welcome keynote speaker, Greg Lindsay. Author, urban futurist, and Senior Fellow of the New Cities Foundation, Lindsay will share his work related to connected mobility, innovation and the “serendipity” in our cities, all principles that are critical to the next generation of cities, and how we, in Downtown Dallas, can embrace these trends. Lindsay is a senior fellow of the New Cities Foundation — where he leads the Connected Mobility Initiative — a non-resident senior fellow of The Atlantic Council’s Strategic Foresight Initiative, and a visiting scholar at New York University’s Rudin Center for Transportation Policy & Management. He is also a contributing writer for Fast Company and co-author of the critically acclaimed bestseller Aerotropolis: The Way We’ll Live Next.
He is currently Urbanist-in-Residence at MINI’s startup incubator, Urban-X, and has previously advised Intel, Ericsson, Samsung, Audi, Chrysler, and Expo 2020. His work on the future of cities has been displayed at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, the 15th Venice Architecture Biennale, and Habitat III. Greg is also a two-time Jeopardy! champion, and the only human to go undefeated against IBM’s Watson.
With sell-out crowds of nearly 1,500 for the last five years, this event is an opportunity to engage with others interested in Downtown’s vitality, and also to educate clients, colleagues, and employees about the latest happenings and future plans for Downtown. It is the only event solely dedicated to center city issues. It is also a fundraiser for DDI, helping us to achieve our mission through critical programs such as the Downtown Safety Patrol, advocacy efforts, the Clean Team, and economic development initiatives.
Sponsorships and individual tickets are available for purchase here. We hope you will demonstrate your support and join us for an enlightening look at the future of our city!
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
- Foster innovation and technology in all aspects of the urban experience
Our program areas include: public safety; capital improvements; maintenance; economic development; public policy; planning/transportation; and marketing. For more information, visit www.downtowndallas.com
Flowers will die, chocolates are basic, and corny cards aren’t going to cut it! Valentine’s Day is here, and the best way to your significant other’s heart is through their stomach with Fluellen Cupcakes.
The cupcakery is loved by Dallas locals, but is so sweetly satisfying that they are frequently asked to ship their fluffy, flavored cakes around the nation.
“Our cupcakes are bigger than everyone else’s, this is Texas,” said owner Keith Fluellen. “Our cupcakes are light and remind people of when their parents used to bake homemade cake. They taste better because this is my family’s recipe that has been passed down for generations.”
Fluellen’s sells an average of 800 cupcakes per day with the most popular flavors being Wedding Cake, Lemon Delight, and German Chocolate. Fluellen said that people who know German Chocolate love his version of the cake because his recipe is authentic. The cake and icing are made from scratch. They also serve cake pops and gourmet coffee if your sweet tooth is calling after lunch.
Make sure you stop in Fluellen Cupcakes, located at 1408 Elm St., to get some sweets for your sweetie this Valentine’s Day!
For a chance to win a $100 gift card to Fluellen Cupcakes, click here: Fluellen Cupcakes Giveaway, and make sure you follow us (@downtown_dallas) and Fluellen Cupcakes (@fluellencupcakes) on Instagram!
For more information, visit www.fluellencupcakes.com.
For more 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.
Finalists Announced: D CEO’s Commercial Real Estate Awards
A total of 55 finalists were honored in categories for outstanding projects, deals, and industry players.
D CEO magazine has announced the finalists in its 2017 Commercial Real Estate Awards program, which honors outstanding projects, deals, and industry players. Last year was an outstanding one for real estate activity in DFW—and the number and caliber of nominations submitted to the publication reflected that.
The competition was especially fierce but, in the end, 55 finalists were selected for recognition in 16 categories. Winners will be revealed at a March 29 awards gala and featured in the April issue of D CEO.
This year John Crawford, the former president and CEO and now vice chairman of Downtown Dallas, Inc., will be honored with the Pioneer Award. More than $2 billion of investment has been made in Downtown Dallas since Crawford became the nonprofit’s president and CEO in 2007, while the area’s retail absorption has increased by 20 percent and the Downtown residential population has grown by more than 50 percent.
To read the full article and list of finalists, click here.
Read the latest edition of our b2b newsletter, Downtown Monthly, by clicking here.