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Dallas Architecture and Real Estate Insights

by Douglas Newby, Real Estate Broker

Dallas Architecture Blog discusses Modern Architecture and Mid Century Modern Homes, Dallas Neighborhoods, Dallas Real Estate and the Aesthetics of the City.

Amazon HQ2 = Trinity Groves

Amazon HQ2 = Trinity Groves

Which city will Amazon select for their second headquarters? It is easy to understand that Trinity Groves and Dallas surpass other cities in Amazon’s corporate requirements for Amazon HQ2. More important to Amazon employees, Trinity Groves surpasses the high expectations and anticipation they have for their Amazon HQ2 location.  One of five favorite reasons that Amazon will select Trinity Groves for HQ2 is that, rather than developers, it was innovators and visionaries who created Trinity Groves.  They specifically envisioned this site as a location for a corporate headquarters in the middle of a vibrant neighborhood in the center of Dallas.

Amazon HQ2 Trinity Groves 21st Century Site on the Trinity River

Proposed Amazon HQ2 at Trinity Groves site
The Amazon HQ2 proposed site is at the foot of the architect Santiago Calatrava-designed Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge spanning the Trinity River.

 

The Trinity Groves site for the Amazon HQ2 headquarters is on the development side of the Trinity River and next to a park larger than the entire city of San Francisco. It is here that the Trinity Groves principals have been assembling 80 acres, rezoning it, and establishing incubator concept restaurants for the early phase vibe of the location for a corporate headquarters.

 

Incubator High Concept Restaurants at Trinity Groves
High concept incubator restaurants draw a diverse and vibrant audience to Trinity Groves.

 

 

1.  Interconnected City Trails and Paths Extend Trinity Groves Walkable Neighborhood

Ron Kirk Pedestrian Bridge over Trinity River at Trinity Groves
The Ron Kirk Pedestrian Bridge for pedestrians and cyclists also spans the Trinity River adjacent to the Santiago Calatrava-designed Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge.

 

Maybe it was from my experience during my first several years as a real estate agent, not owning a car, that I came to understand a neighborhood as a place where one can easily walk or ride a bike to explore its boundaries. An intimacy with the terrain and neighbors develops when one is walking or on a bike. The Trinity Groves neighborhood offers a rich smorgasbord of attractions and areas of interest one wants to explore. Dallas is a great choice for a city. Trinity Groves is an inspired choice for an Amazon HQ2 neighborhood.

Trinity Groves Neighborhood is Connected and Cool

Architect Santiago Calatrava makes engineering look like art.

The Trinity Groves neighborhood is located at the foot of the Santiago Calatrava-designed Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge and it is at the convergence of pedestrian paths and city trails that lead to high culture, dense urbanity, pastoral golf courses, fashionable restaurants, hardwood forests, major league sporting events, a horse park, in addition to the immediate incubator concept restaurants and innovative retail that is intermixed with the Amazon HQ2 site. Few cities have a neighborhood with as much cycling mobility or as many desirable destinations with pedestrian proximity.

Intermingled Cafes at Amazon HQ2 Site

Dallas Cafes at Trinity Groves in Dallas
Dynamic restaurants at Trinity Groves create a dynamic audience.

 

Without even venturing into the neighborhood, one will find intermingled with the Amazon HQ2 site 18 high concept incubator restaurants and 12 innovative retail concepts such as Steam Theory, a craft-brew chef-owned restaurant, or Bing Box that serves snow cream, a shaved milk ice.

An Easy Walk to High and Low Culture

Plensa Exhibition at the Nasher Gallery

Nasher Sculpture Garden at Nasher Sculpture Center
The art of Spanish Artist Jaume Plensa, exhibited inside the Nasher Sculpture Center and outside in the garden

 

The list of cool places and activities evoking high and low culture within walking distance of Amazon HQ2 is astounding: professional basketball, professional hockey, concert venues, a golf course, theaters, museums, a sculpture garden and Asian art collection. The Amazon HQ2 site is remarkably close to many fabulous, fun and meaningful places.

 

Art Galleries – 0.5 MilesArtist Winston Lee Mascarenhas at Design Center Art Gallery

Winston Lee Mascarenhas at his art opening
Opening of the artist Winston Lee Mascarenhas show at one of the dozens of Design District art galleries

 

Art galleries are integrated into the Trinity Groves Amazon HQ2 site and more are just a few blocks away in the Design District.

 

Design District – 0.9 Miles

Artist Allen Kirsch has art exhibition at Holly Hunt Gallery
Holly Hunt Design Showroom hosts exhibition of artist and interior designer Allen Kirsch.

 

The Dallas Design District and Dragon Street are celebrated for their important art galleries and interior design showrooms. This district is located less than a mile from the Amazon HQ2 site at Trinity Groves.

 

Union Station — 0.9 Miles

Union Station is a rail and transportation hub for Dallas, Downtown Dallas, and the Amazon HQ2 at Trinity Groves.  High-speed rail, traditional trains, Dallas rapid transit, buses and other modes of transportation emanate from this location.

 

Sports Arena – 0.9 Miles

American Airlines Center in Victory Park, Dallas
The American Airlines Center in Victory Park is the home of the Dallas Mavericks and Dallas Stars and a venue for touring artists.

 

Amazon HQ2 at the Trinity Groves location will enjoy the proximity to The Dallas Mavericks professional basketball team and the Dallas Stars professional hockey team at the American Airlines Center.  The AA Center is also a great venue for concerts and events.

 

Klyde Warren Park – 1.2 Miles

Yoga and other activities at Klyde Warren Park in Dallas
Frenetic energy, bustling sidewalk cafes, concerts, families frolicking, and neighborhood residents vigorously relaxing are all found at Klyde Warren Park. Yoga at the Park

 

Klyde Warren Park connects the Arts District with the Uptown restaurants and residences. Lining the park are glass-walled restaurants and terraces. Restaurants and a series of food trucks extend the park atmosphere for families and professionals, in the spirit of the Amazon HQ2 Trinity Groves atmosphere.

 

Kessler Park – 1.2 Miles

Kessler Woods is an enclave of modern architect-designed homes in Dallas, Texas.
Kessler Woods is a collection of architect-designed modern homes including this one by architects Mark Domiteaux and Laura Baggett.
Historic Home in Kessler Park
Historic home in Kessler Park high on a hill overlooking Stevens Park Trail and Golf Course.

 

Kessler Park is known for its historic estate homes that are sited on lovely topography and along curving streets along with clusters of adjacent architect-designed modern homes being built in Kessler Woods. These neighborhoods extend the architecturally and historically significant modern and original buildings of the Trinity Groves location for the Amazon HQ2 site.

 

Stevens Park Golf Course – 1.4 Miles

Stevens Park Golf Course is nestled in a charming Dallas neighborhood.
A view of Stevens Park Golf Course as seen from surrounding homes

 

From Amazon HQ2, your golf cart will take you to a beautifully established and renovated Stevens Park Golf Course that is placed in the middle of a neighborhood with beautiful and surprisingly affordable homes that surround it.

 

The Perot Museum – 1.4 Miles

View across Downtown Dallas to the Perot Museum
Centered in the distance is the Perot Museum that delights thousands of Dallas students and adults every month who love nature and science.
The Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Dallas
The Perot Museum of Nature and Science

 

The Perot Museum of Nature and Science was designed by Pritzker Architecture Prize award-winning architect Thom Mayne. This is a museum that employees of Amazon HQ2 will particularly appreciate.

 

Arts District – 1.5 Miles

A view from the Winspear Opera House to the Meyerson in the Dallas Arts District
Dallas Arts District has the largest collection of buildings designed by Pritzker Prize award-winning architects.
The Meyerson Symphony Center
The internationally acoustically acclaimed Meyerson Symphony Center is perfect for the world-renowned conductor Jaap van Zweden and for performances by musicians including Wynton Marsalis.
The proposed Amazon HQ2 site at Trinity Groves is only 1.2 miles from the Meyer Symphony Center.
The architect I.M. Pei-designed Morton Meyerson Symphony Center in the Dallas Arts District.
Dallas audience before a Dallas Theatre Center performance at the Wyly Theater
Architects Joshua Prince-Ramus and Rem Koolhaas, the architects of the Seattle Library, designed the Wyly Theatre to have 24 different stage and audience configurations and a three-story wall that can open up to view the entire Arts District.
Dallas Museum of Art in the Dallas Arts District
The Dallas Museum of Art
Chihuly Glass Sculptures in the entrance of the Dallas Museum of Art
When the entrance of the Dallas Museum of Art was reoriented to overlook the anticipated Klyde Warren Park, artist Dale Chihuly‘s glass was acquired to celebrate the grand entrance and reception area.
Winspear Opera House in Dallas
The red cylinder of the Winspear Opera House is a beacon of the Dallas Arts District.
Patrons at the Winspear Opera House in Dallas
The Opening Celebration of the Winspear Opera House

 

The Dallas Arts District has the largest collection of cultural buildings designed by Pritzker Architecture Prize award-winning architects. The Wyly Theater was designed by architect Joshua Prince-Ramus and Rem Koolhaas, who also designed the Seattle library. The Winspear Opera House was designed by architect Sir Norman Foster. The Nasher Sculpture Center was designed by architect Renzo Piano and landscaped by architect Peter Walker. The Dallas Museum of Art was designed by architect Edward Larrabee Barnes.  Gensler is the celebrated architectural firm designing the Amazon HQ2 Trinity Groves development.

 

AT&T Corporate Headquarters – 1.8 Miles

An employee at Amazon HQ2 could always walk to the AT&T headquarters and knock on the door if the latest oversized optic fiber connections have a glitch.

 

Grab a Bike

Grab one of the thousands of rent-a-bikes available and you are able to easily ride to the shores of White Rock Lake where you can sail, row, paddle or ride to the medical district, Texas Horse Park, the Great Trinity Forest (great hardwood forest), the Trinity River Audubon Center, national bird counting sites, or university campuses.

 

A Bike Ride Away

Bishop Boulevard before SMU football game

Homecoming Parade on Bishop Boulevard at SMU
Rain or shine, only a few miles from Trinity Groves, SMU Boulevard draws students, alums, and residents of Dallas by foot or bike to celebrate autumn even if they are not attending the Saturday SMU football game on campus.

 

Further explore the Amazon HQ2 Trinity Groves neighborhood boundaries on a bike. To the south, the Trinity River and Park is lined with residential areas, restaurants, and golf courses. To the north, the Katy Trail and Santa Fe Trail make a loop around entertainment, cultural and education facilities.

 

The Bishop Arts District – 2.8 Miles

Bishop Arts is 2.8 miles from Trinity Groves

Those living and working in the Amazon HQ2 Trinity Groves neighborhood can ride their bike to the Bishop Arts District. The chef-owned restaurants in Bishop Arts are destinations for those who live across Dallas.

 

The Medical District – 2.1 Miles

Trinity Groves is 2.1 miles from UT Southwestern
William P. Clements Jr. University Hospital. On another day when the sun is low on the horizon, streaking across the floors, and with modern furniture in a room here, it almost makes getting sick worthwhile.

 

UT Southwestern Medical Center provides the finest care and great research from its innovation, technology and talent. It has had the most Nobel Laureates in the country. UT Southwestern conveys medical triumphs and personal comfort. The aesthetic of its recently designed Clements University Hospital is the envy of luxury hotels. And it is only a bike ride away from Amazon HQ2 at Trinity Groves.

 

The Arts Magnet and Talent and Gifted Schools – 2.1 Miles

Trinity Groves is only 2.1 miles from the Dallas Arts Magnate High School

The Dallas Arts Magnet School is known for graduating many successful artists including Norah JonesEdie Brickell and Erykah Badu, who still return to perform and inspire current students. The Magnet School for the Talented and Gifted has been one of the highest ranked public schools in the country. The academic success of the diverse student body and artists who have studied here will appeal to those at Amazon HQ2.

 

Farmers Market – 2.3 Miles

Trinity Groves enjoys the Dallas Farmers Market, only 2.3 miles away
The Dallas Farmers Market includes fresh fruits and vegetables, enticing restaurants, and a venue for culinary exploits and events.

 

Fresh food has long been a part of Texas history and a current interest of those who will be working at Amazon HQ2. Texas has been the origin of many great grocery stores including Whole Foods, Fiesta, Central Market, H.E.B. and Tom Thumb. There are restaurants in Dallas that enjoy farm-to-market deliveries. The Dallas Farmers Market allows fresh produce and heritage meats to be delivered from the farm to your kitchen. The Farmers Market, just down the street from Deep Ellum, is now surrounded by new residences.

 

Deep Ellum – 2.8 Miles

Deep Ellum is a 100-year-old district of historic one- and two-story historic commercial buildings that have been converted to retail, restaurants and historic four-story buildings converted to residences with new ten-story residential developments taking place.  Deep Ellum has additional edge and history and is within an easy bicycle ride from the potential Amazon HQ2 at Trinity Groves.

 

Fair Park – 3.7 Miles

Art Deco Building at Fair Park in Dallas, 3.7 miles from Trinity Groves
Fair Park has the largest collection of Art Deco buildings in the United States.
Amazon HQ2 employees will love Big Tex at the State Fair
Big Tex welcomes you.
Art Deco buildings that Amazon HQ2 employees will enjoy
While still used for exhibition spaces during the State Fair of Texas, the remainder of the year Fair Park is enjoyed as a park and visited for its museums, Music Hall and special events.
Dart Rail will be a transportation convenience for Amazon HQ2 employees.
Just as Trinity Groves has a rail line and pedestrian paths that go through it, Fair Park has access from a Dart Rail and the Santa Fe pedestrian and bike path.

 

The largest Earth Day celebration in the world is at Fair Park, with 75,000 attending. Fair Park is the home of the State Fair of Texas and also the largest collection of 1936 Art Deco buildings in the world. It is along the Santa Fe bike path and at the DART station making access easy for Dallas residents and those at Amazon HQ2. At Christmas time it is here that 2,000 bicycles and gifts filling a 90,000 square foot space are given to thousands of needy children.

 

Knox/Henderson – 3.8 Miles

Restaurants at Knox Henderson will be enjoyed by those at Amazon HQ2.
On Knox Street one can find stylish sidewalk café restaurants like Le Bilboquet or the first Starbucks that was opened in Dallas. Down the street, on Henderson Avenue, one can have their single origin coffee pulled at Houndstooth.

 

Even before Amazon HQ2 was a glimmer in the eye of Dallas, one of the first streets of chef-owned restaurants and owner-run shops was on Knox Street and Henderson Avenue. Major retail like the Apple Store, and new residential development are being added to this quaint mix.

 

SMU – 4.9 Miles

Gerald Ford Football Stadium at SMU in Dallas
Surrounded by museums and dormitories is the SMU football stadium with one end open to the neighborhood.
Amazon HQ2 will enjoy being close to the SMU campus
Dallas Hall was the original building at SMU, which recently celebrated its centennial.

 

In a city of fabulous universities, SMU is within the neighborhood. From the anticipated Amazon HQ2 at Trinity Groves, one can go to lectures, concerts, events, theater, the George W. Bush Presidential Library, the Meadows Museum which has the largest collection of Spanish art outside of Madrid, the Lyle School of Engineering Innovation Lab, or enjoy the festivities on the boulevard on the SMU campus before a football game.

 

Angelika Film Center and Mockingbird Station – 5.0 Miles

Those at Amazon HQ2 will enjoy attending film festivals only 5 miles from Trinity Groves.
Movie stars and directors are introduced on the steps of the Angelika Theater that hosts film festivals, art films and mainstream movies.

 

Angelika is always a great place to see independent films, foreign films and Academy Award-winning films. It is also the host of the Dallas International Film Festival, the USA Film Festival and the South Asian Film Festival. From the Amazon HQ2 site at Trinity Groves, one can arrive by bike or by DART, which has a stop at Angelika Theater and Mockingbird Station.

 

SMU 50-Meter Pool – 5.2 Miles

SMU Indoor pool is only 5 miles from the proposed Amazon HQ2 site
SMU Robson and Lindley Aquatics Center 50-Meter Indoor Pool and Diving Well
Original outdoor SMU pool
The outdoor 50-meter swimming pool and adjacent 10-meter platform diving well have been the aquatic courtyard of SMU, providing views of the Lyle School of Engineering building, the Cox School of Business building, SMU dormitories, the SMU Boulevard and the church steeples of the Perkins School of Theology.

 

This new SMU Robson and Lindley Aquatics Center, with its 50-meter pool and 10-meter diving well, is adjacent to the DART Rail and the Katy Trail which connects to the Trinity Groves Amazon HQ2 site. Here the nationally ranked SMU women’s and men’s varsity swimming and diving teams compete, and age group swimmers train as do the Dallas Aquatic Masters swimmers. This indoor pool and diving well will be complemented by a new 50-meter outdoor pool and 10-meter diving well adjacent to it.

 

White Rock Lake – 6.9 Miles

Amazon HQ2 sailers will only be 6.9 miles from White Rock Lake.
The Corinthian Sailing Club, site of Jim Stillson, former SMU varsity and US National Diving Team coach, retirement celebration.
View of White Rock Lake
White Rock Lake

 

Head west from the Amazon HQ2 site at Trinity Groves on the Katy Trail and you reach White Rock Lake in 6.9 miles.  From the Amazon HQ2 site at Trinity Groves, head east on the Santa Fe Trail and you also reach White Rock Lake in 6.9 miles. In either direction, you will enjoy the 9-mile loop around the lake. White Rock Lake is a destination for walkers, runners, cyclists, roller skaters, skateboarders, and it is part of the classic segment of the BMW Dallas Marathon. At White Rock Lake there is the Corinthian Sailing Club and the White Rock Boat Club for sailors, and picnic tables along the shores to take in the view and enjoy friends. At White Rock Lake you will see rowers training, kayakers and weekly sail boat races.

 

Texas Horse Park – 7.3 Miles

You will enjoy going from the saddle of your bicycle to the saddle of your horse at the Texas Horse Park as part of Trinity Park.

 

Trinity River Audubon Center – 8.9 Miles

Amazon HQ2 nature lovers will love the Audubon Center.

Amazon HQ2 walkers and hikers will enjoy the hardwood forest

 

In less distance than a bike ride around White Rock Lake, the Trinity Groves Amazon HQ2 is located close to the spectacular Trinity River Audubon Center and Trinity Forest.

 

Trinity Forest Golf Course – 11 miles

Those working at HQ2 will be able to visit the Trinity Grove Golf Course
This British-style links course, designed by Texan Ben Crenshaw and Bill Coore, takes advantage of the beautiful hardwood forest setting and Trinity River that runs through it. It is the home of the SMU Golf Team and the Byron Nelson Annual Golf Tournament.
Architect Mark P. Finlay designed a clubhouse at the Trinity Forest Golf Club that Amazon HQ2 golfers will love
Mark P. Finlay is a Connecticut-based architect who has designed beautiful residences across New England and the United States. His designs reflect the elegance and traditions of the regions in which his work is found. In Dallas, at the Trinity Forest Golf Club, Mark Finlay has created a modern interpretation of a classic clubhouse.

The Trinity Forest golf course at the Trinity Forest Golf Club is the home of the SMU Varsity Golf Team as well as the course for the Annual Byron Nelson Golf Tournament.  Golfers of all ages across Dallas and North Texas enjoy this British link-style course.  Those at the Amazon HQ2 site will particularly appreciate the proximity to Trinity Groves.

 

 

2.  Dallas Has Greatest Collection of 20th and 21st Century Architecturally Significant Homes in the Country

 

Amazon HQ2 Modern architecture lovers will find styles from many distinguished architects such as Richard Meier in the Dallas area.
New York architect Richard Meier designed this modern home in Dallas.
The style of this home by Seattle architect Ryan Grey Smith, across from White Rock Lake in Dallas, will be familiar to those at Amazon HQ2.
Home designed by Seattle architect Ryan Grey Smith across from White Rock Lake.
Amazon HQ2 employees will appreciate this modern home in Dallas by architect Don Chapell.
Architect Don Chapell, of the Sarasota School, designed this modern home in Dallas.
Amazon HQ2 employees will enjoy this architecturally significant Dallas home, designed by architect Maurice Fatio.
New York and Palm Beach Architect Maurice Fatio studied with Karl Moser, considered the European godfather of Modernism. Fatio designed this architecturally significant home in Dallas.

 

For over 100 years the best architects from across the country from Seattle to Sarasota, Los Angeles to New York, New Orleans to Chicago and around the world have designed homes in Dallas. Regional and international styles are represented along with the strong influence of Texas Modern and eclectic designs. Midcentury modern, modern, eclectic or regional, those at Amazon HQ2 will find casual or elegant homes with architectural style and located in neighborhoods that reflect their personal aesthetic.

 

Dallas currently has many of the best architects in the country.

Architects Braxton Werner & Paul Field designed home
Architects Braxton Werner & Paul Field designed this small modern home in the Northern Hills neighborhood, close to the Katy Trail.
Small modern home in the historic Belmont neighborhood designed by architect Joshua Nimmo
Architect Joshua Nimmo, who designs large, modern homes on estate lots, designed this home on a small historic lot in the Belmont neighborhood, between the Santa Fe Trail and the Katy Trail.
This modern home designed by Architect Bentley Tibbs is ensconced between the Katy Trail and Turtle Creek in the Park Bridge neighborhood.
Architect Bentley Tibbs designed this modern home in the Park Bridge Court neighborhood. There are views of runners on the Katy Trail behind the home and views of Turtle Creek in front of this modern home.

 

Emerging and established Dallas architects and landscape architects are receiving Texas and national awards as their compelling designs impact the community and impact architecture across the country.  These architects in Dallas have explored contemporary architecture in context with its neighborhoods, including single-family modern homes, modern townhouses, modern attached single-family homes, modern condominiums and modern highrise residences.  The design-savvy Amazon HQ2 employees will be invigorated discussing a new home or the renovation of an old home with one of the many talented architects in Dallas.

3.  Advantage of Innovators Not Developers Creating Trinity Groves Amazon HQ2 Site

The Trinity Groves site was created for a major corporate headquarters such as Amazon HQ2.
The Trinity Groves District, larger than the Dallas Arts District, was created for a vibrant corporate headquarters at the convergence of paths, trails, and mass transportation.

 

The Trinity Grove principals are successful innovators, visionaries, venture capitalists, and artists who envisioned 21st century urban living in the evolving center of downtown Dallas. The principals, Stuart Fitts and Phil Romano, have successfully nurtured early medical devices, created new retail and restaurant concepts, and artist galleries, in addition to being early media owners. Now they are committing their resources and creativity to making Trinity Groves the most vibrant mixed-use site in Dallas.  This is perfect for Amazon HQ2.

 

Non-Developers Creating Best Development

Pet lovers at the proposed Amazon HQ2 site at Trinity Groves will find many enjoyable ways to exercise.
Pet owners will enjoy the many trails, paths, pet parks and bridge walks afforded by Trinity Groves. Pets love Dallas.

 

Traditionally, developers are tethered by conventional thinking, investor demands, lender requirements, and a desire for short-term profits. The principals of West Dallas Investments, LP, the single owner of the 80-acre Trinity Groves development site, is free of all that.  This approach is one of the reasons Trinity Groves becomes so attractive for Amazon HQ2.

 

A Legacy Project in the Spirit of Dallas

Amazon HQ2 and Trinity Groves will grow together in dynamic new directions.
Dallas is known for big ideas and thoughtful gestures. Trinity Groves was created to celebrate Dallas and its potential in the 21st century and beyond.

 

In the spirit of Dallas, the motivation of the Trinity Groves principals was to create a legacy project for their families and for Dallas. This approach ensures the highest quality project now and 50 years from now.  Amazon HQ2 will also be a legacy project.

 

Vision of Trinity Groves

Trinity Groves and Dallas will provide a wealth of opportunities for Amazon HQ2 employees.

The vision of Trinity Groves came with West Dallas Investments, LP’s acquisition of the first parcel of land 12 years ago located at the foot of the proposed Santiago Calatrava-designed bridge. This original land purchase grew to 80 contiguous acres at the foot of the now built Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge designed by Santiago Calatrava and the adjacent Ron Kirk Pedestrian Bridge over the Trinity River. Trinity Groves’ vision is coming into focus and fruition with Amazon HQ2.

 

21st Century Center of Dallas

Amazon HQ2 employees will enjoy a vibrant lifestyle in Trinity Groves.
Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge links the 20th century downtown Dallas with the 21st century downtown Dallas.

 

These visionaries recognize that the proposed Trinity River bridge would connect the current center of downtown Dallas with their land investment on the development side of the Trinity River. From the hippest art galleries to UT Southwestern, with the most Nobel Laureates, the Trinity Groves site is in the path of design, fashion, sports, art, entertainment, medical, and 20th and 21st century transportation. This path flourishes as Dallas continues to grow to the west and north just as cities and villages have done for centuries. Amazon HQ2 will add to the further gravitational pull of Trinity Groves.

 

Center of Dallas Moving in Direction of Trinity Groves

Amazon HQ2 employees will gravitate to this spectacular pedestrian bridge.
The wide Ron Kirk Bridge is suitable for picnics, pedestrians, or bikes.

 

Downtown Dallas is gravitating towards the Amazon HQ2 site at Trinity Groves. The gravitational pull of Trinity Groves is further strengthened by the bike and pedestrian paths that converge here, along with 20th century fixed rail and 21st century autonomous transportation.

Vision for Fortune 50 Corporate Headquarters

West Dallas Investments, LP, desired 80 acres of contiguous land, so they could create a blank slate for a major company to make their headquarters in the midst of incubator high concept restaurants, craft beer venues, innovative retail, modern residences, repurposed buildings, and a mixed-use urban environment linked to the river and parks.  Who better than Amazon HQ2 and the Amazon employees to further enhance this vision?

Rather Than Rush Into Development, a Dynamic Platform Was Created

Unique restaurants in Trinity Groves offer food and festivities for those at Amazon HQ2.

The Trinity Groves principals have created a platform and opportunity for a dynamic company desiring to grow and evolve in a city that is growing and evolving. This prescient approach is perfect for Amazon and Amazon HQ2.

Unlimited-Height Zoning Included Prescient Approach for Amazon HQ2

Cities inherently encourage incremental zoning on a case by case basis to developers as they propose projects like Amazon HQ2.  With this approach, even the best projects with the finest architects can drag on for many years or get thwarted. A good example would be the proposed Thomas Heatherwick-designed Pier 55 three-acre park and performance venue in New York. Even with one of the world’s best architects and a $250-million donation, this fine project got scuttled because New York City zoning and regulatory approval could not be obtained.  Here in Dallas at Trinity Groves, the zoning is already in place for Amazon HQ2.

Eighty Acres Rezoned in Advance to Facilitate Corporate Headquarters

The proposed Amazon HQ2 Trinity Groves site has been expressly pre-zoned to accommodate and celebrate a major corporate complex.

The principals of Trinity Groves insisted that the land be rezoned first so that a significant urban development could readily accommodate a major corporate headquarters in a way that their employees and Dallas residents would enjoy. The Trinity Groves site was rezoned for unlimited height skyscrapers, with zoning stepped down in height to one- and two-story retail, restaurants and residences. Trinity Groves becomes a 21st century vision of urban living in the center of Dallas, just as Amazon HQ2 embodies a 21st century corporate headquarters.

 

 

4.  Opportunity for Amazon HQ2 to Help Shape a City

Choosing Dallas, Amazon will have an early stage presence in a vibrant district that will increasingly be at the heart of Dallas. Downtown Dallas is moving in the direction of Trinity Groves. Amazon would not be dominating Dallas as the great corporate hope to save the city or make a city as it would for many cities wishing for its presence. Amazon, with its second headquarters in Dallas, would be interpreting, massaging, and contributing to the future center of downtown Dallas. The Amazon HQ2 employees with their presence, energy, and vision will be able to shape and expand the Trinity Groves neighborhood and the many projects in Dallas already underway.

Dallas is an Open City, Open to People, Open to Ideas

Amazon HQ2 will find Dallas a city open to new cultures and ideas.
The architectural layers of the eras and styles represent the decades of development in Dallas.

 

People in Dallas are celebrated for their contributions to the city, not how long their families have been here. Many cities are rigid ideologically and physically bound by the past. Dallas is a city that loves ideas that let it grow and prosper in meaningful ways. Dallas embraces people, like the Amazon HQ2 employees, who will contribute in many ways whether as volunteers, civic leaders, non-partisan elected officials, philanthropists, business leaders, and innovators.

Dallas Offers Much Only as a Starting Point of Offering More

Amazon HQ2 employees will admire the vision of Trinity Groves and Dallas to innovate without losing sight of historical preservation.
So much has happened in Dallas. So much more is to come. Cranes dominate the Dallas landscape like oil derricks populate West Texas.  In the background is One Arts Plaza, designed by Lionel Morrison, FAIA.

 

Dallas is growing in a healthy way and not gasping for air under duress of massive debt and uncertainty. Why would someone want to move to a city and be obligated to help pay off 50 years of accumulated city and state debt? How much more attractive for an individual or Amazon HQ2 to move to Dallas that has years projected of economic prosperity and surplus.

Every Neighborhood is on the Right Side of the Tracks

The many unique architect-design homes in Trinity Groves and Dallas will be enticing for relocating Amazon HQ2 employees.
This home designed by Frank Welch, FAIA, is in the Turtle Creek Park neighborhood, backed up to the Katy Trail and overlooking Turtle Creek.

 

Dallas is a city of neighborhoods that do not divide the city, but create a pleasing mosaic of complimentary and distinct aesthetics and personalities. Mobility through this mosaic of neighborhoods made up of residents from around the country and the world is easy and welcoming. Autonomous vehicles and increasing bike paths will extend the friendly neighborhood atmosphere of the city for Amazon HQ2 employees.

Dallas Philanthropy Unites the City

Dallas philanthropists have done more than contribute money and erect monumental buildings. Philanthropists connect with and are a vital part of the Dallas community. Texas Instruments is a great historical example. Even at the height of their business careers, the founders of Texas Instruments including Eugene McDermott and Erik Jonsson who served as mayor, created universities like the University of Texas at Dallas, and initiated private schools like St. Mark’s and established cultural organizations and museums. The Cullum family, the founders of the Tom Thumb grocery stores, is another example. The female and male descendants continue to contribute locally, nationally and internationally. Annette Simmons, who is a force in Dallas, among her many leadership gifts, recently gave $50 million to the Trinity River Park in honor of her late husband Harold Simmons who was a much loved visionary, humanitarian and nature lover. Their civic leadership has continued through several generations, with female and male family members having a profound voice in Dallas, national, and world affairs. Jeff Bezos and Amazon embrace this spirit of civic contribution, as will employees at Amazon HQ2.

Margaret McDermott Continues to Create and Inspire

The women of Amazon HQ2 will become a part of the robust legacy of women who have shaped the city.
Margaret McDermott continues to inspire Dallas with her ideas, energy and philanthropy.
The University of Texas at Dallas is one of the many highly-ranked venues of education.
Mrs. Eugene McDermott enjoys visiting with former McDermott Scholars at the University of Texas at Dallas

 

Margaret McDermott, wife of Texas Instruments founder Eugene McDermott, is 106 years old and she continues to lead and inspire. A day does not go by when she is not meeting with either students, scholars, neighbors, museum directors, artists, educators, architects or community contributors. Mrs. McDermott’s ideas involve action. Her encouragements prompt enthusiastic acceleration of ideas. No doubt her energy will also inspire those at Amazon HQ2.

Women are Synonymous With Dallas’ Success

Since Sarah Cockrell effectively put Dallas on the map by building the first permanent bridge across the Trinity River, building the first Dallas hotel, and being the first woman to speak before the Texas legislature, Dallas has been a city led by women. Women influence the city and the nation in their roles as public television host, delegates and board members to the United Nations and Foreign Relations Council, chairs of education and cultural institutions, and overseeing the city as Mayors and City Managers. The leadership and ideas of women have immensely impacted the city of Dallas. A series of Dallas female mayors and city managers have helped shape the city. Women who routinely served as the presidents of board of trustees of universities, museums, symphonies, banks, and business organizations also added to the depth and cultural life of Dallas. Women in Dallas do not just make gifts and sit on their laurels. The incredible women who will be working at Amazon HQ2 will enjoy collaborating with the thousands of amazing women in Dallas. When Dallas women lead, people listen.

The women of Amazon HQ2 will be inspired by the legacy of the late Ruth Altshuler.
The late Ruth Altshuler, former chairman of SMU’s Board of Trustees
Arts patrons at Amazon HQ2 will recognize the remarkable achievements of Deedie Rose.
Deedie Rose, former chairman of Dallas Museum of Art Board of Trustees
Laura Miller, Former Dallas Mayor
Former Dallas Mayor, Laura Miller
Mary Suhm, former Dallas City Manager
Former Dallas City Manager, Mary Suhm
Lee Cullum, the host of CEO on public television in Dallas
Lee Cullum, Host of CEO on public television station KERA, and board member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Photo: My Sweet Charity
Nancy Marcus, Ph.D., former Delegate to the United Nations
Nancy Marcus, Ph.D., former delegate to the United Nations, and chairman of SMU’s Willis M. Tate Distinguished Lecture Series
Founder of the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture, Dr. Gail Thomas
Dr. Gail Thomas, founder of the Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture and creator of the Center for the City

A Merger of Amazon and Dallas Energy and Vision

Energy and vision will characterize the proposed the merger of Amazon HQ2 and Trinity Groves and Dallas.

The Amazon HQ2 in Dallas merges the energy, innovation, and vision of Amazon employees with the energy, innovation, and vision of Dallas. Here is an opportunity for Amazon to create and impact an area positively evolving. Rather than trying to create something new in a city of habit and fiscal failure, Amazon can use Dallas, a 21st century city of innovators, as a launching pad to demonstrate the successful social and economic vision of a 21st century company.

Together Amazon and Dallas Can be an Example of Corporate and Civic Leadership

Dallas understands the benefits of diversity. Its inclusive environment is the reason that for over 100 years Dallas has attracted people from across the country and from around the world. Those who were at first reluctant to come to Dallas often refuse to leave Dallas when their company wants them to relocate. Those from other countries that came here seeking safety have successfully set up businesses and become an important part of the community.

Trinity Groves is a Good Example of the Dallas Approach to Diversity

Amazon HQ2 will welcome the diverse community embraced at Trinity Groves.

While some try to legislate diversity, Trinity Groves attracted diversity. They did this with food. Their incubator restaurants, such as Beto & Son and Chino Chinatiown, try out new concepts and explore regional and international foods which successfully attracts people from all backgrounds. This creates a vibrant and pleasing environment where people at Amazon HQ2 will to live and work.

Political Collegiality is the Triumph of Dallas

Former Presidents of the United States convene at the President George W. Bush Presidential Library.
Republicans and Democrats in Dallas enjoy each other’s company, including the former Presidents of the United States, at the George W. Bush Library. The George W. Bush Institute has developed a reputation for its bi-partisan discussion of public policy issues.

 

Dallas is a city with a mayor and city council who run for political office without political party affiliations. Dallas is as likely to have a woman, an African-American, or a Jewish mayor as it is to have a white male. The city manager, chief of police, and school superintendent are just as likely to be female or a person of color.

 

Dallas Has Largest National Contributors to Both Democrats and Republicans

Dallas has prominent Democrat and Republican donors. Regardless of their political party affiliation, those in Dallas party together, work together, and join each other to elect the best non-partisan city council and school board members. They also work together on civic projects that yield the dynamic livability and growth of Dallas. Where else but Dallas would you find a past Republican President being given art lessons by liberal artists and good friendships develop despite amusement at one another’s political views.

 

 

5.  Amazon HQ2 Employees Would Feel Personally Fulfilled in Dallas

When I first heard Amazon was looking for a location for a second headquarters, it became obvious cities were clamoring to compete by offering generous financial perks. My initial thought was how could Amazon HQ2 employees become involved with and contribute to Dallas, not Amazon as corporate largesse, but as individual Amazon contributors.

 

Autonomous Transportation Provides Opportunities for Amazon Contributors

Amazon HQ2 poised to assist in the proposed autonomous transportation testing corridor effort.

One opportunity for Amazon HQ2 employees quickly came to mind. Trinity Groves has been discussed by many as the potential center of an autonomous transportation testing corridor that will run through dozens of municipalities. The interest and expertise of Amazon employees could help expedite Dallas becoming the national testing site for autonomous air, land, and water transportation and delivery systems. The Dallas region has been identified as being ideally positioned to coordinate regional autonomous vehicle protocols, testing, infrastructure, and academic and engineering support. Dallas has the sunshine necessary for optimal testing, historical cooperation between municipalities, an abundance of roads and right of ways. Amazon employees could help lead this effort.

The Trinity River Park and Great Hardwood Forest Offer Another Opportunity

Amazon employees from Seattle might know as much about trees, forests and parks as they do about engineering. The great hardwood forest within the Trinity River Park provides great opportunities for Amazon HQ2 employees. They can help develop the non-invasive access and programming for the largest urban hardwood forest in the country. Working at the Amazon headquarters overlooking the Trinity River would give great immediacy and passion for massaging this park that will be enjoyed now and for hundreds of years to come.

Amazon and Dallas Can Become an Inspiration for 21st Century Company/City Relationships

Amazon HQ2 and Dallas will epitomize a dynamic 21st Century cooperation between corporations and cities.
There is nothing chimerical about the city of Dallas and yet it offers wonderful opportunities for people, nonprofits and corporations to make their mark and help shape an evolving city.

 

Amazon HQ2 and Dallas can be examples of 21st century combined corporate and civic leadership that provides opportunities for all of its neighbors and citizens. Dallas is a city always welcoming new ideas and change. Amazon is a company that has created change and new ideas. Socially open-minded and economically astute, Amazon and Dallas are natural collaborators. Trinity Groves is the perfect epicenter of the dynamic relationship developing between Amazon and Dallas. Amazon employees will find HQ2 at Trinity Groves in Dallas a new home that will make them happy.

 

Dallas and Trinity Groves welcome Amazon HQ2.

Comments

“My day on Saturday, March 3 relates to the post AmazonHQ2=TrinityGroves and shows some of the amazing opportunities in Dallas. I finished coaching the SMU Women’s Swim Team who are practicing at the SMU Robson & Lindley Aquatic Center. I decide to ride The Katy Trail bike path from the pool to Reverchon Park to meet my daughter who is doing community service with Scottish Rite Hospital on their Park clean up day. Hang out with the volunteers and help clean up the park. It’s a beautiful day in Dallas. I carry on down the Katy Trail to American Airlines Center and see people walking and using Bikeshares to ride and walk to the Stars game. I decide to check out the trails at the Trinity River and see that Dallas has a huge event going on with a road race, yoga ,vendors and many events at Trinity Groves. The Continental Street now called the Ron Kirk Bridge is packed with people enjoying the event. I spend some time with Jarrett Willis who is making seedbombs in preparation for the great SeedBomb Event which will target different areas along the Trinity River to bring native grasses and wildflowers to beautify and prevent erosion along the Trinity River. It was great to see what was going on in Dallas and how easy these trail extensions have made it accessible by bike. I could have easily cut over the Klyde Warren Park and go by the Dallas Farmers Market and #Deep Elm to the Santa Fe Trail and ride past #White Rock Lake to my Lakewood home but decided to head back up the Katy Trail. By now the trail is packed with people heading out from the #KATY Trail Ice House to the American Airlines Center. Super day in Big D. So much to see and experience in a 5 mile radius from Downtown. I finish my ride with lunch at Urban Taco at Mockingbird Station next to the #Aquatic Center!”

REPLY:
“Thank you Steve for your poignant description of how the trails connect a vibrant city.”
–Douglas Newby

 

Deconstruction Podcast Responds to HQ2 = Trinity Groves

Deconstruction Podcast hosts Shawn Williams and Ryan Trimble discuss with Douglas Newby the evolution of Dallas neighborhoods and the appeal of Trinity Groves for Amazon employees.

Part I

Part II – Amazon Focus