01/10/05 Hillside Conservation
I am a resident of the proposed Hillside Conservation District.
After reading your posting on the Greenway Parks debacle, I am relieved someone
out there is putting info out there that is not slanted in the city's favor!
I signed the original petition which was represented to us
(the residents) as a "feasibility study" of the pluses and minuses of
turning our neighborhood into a CD. I attended
the meetings and looked at the data presented by the city representatives
who were leading the meeting (Nathaniel
Barnett, being the leader, with support from Leif
Sandberg and Commissioner William "Bulldog"
During the first meeting, it
was apparent there was much opposition and many
questions. An organized group of property
owners made it immediately known they wanted to be
dropped from the "study". It was suggested that
we remain open minded and not draw any conclusions until we attended more
meetings. It was also stated that duplex owners
in opposition would not be dropped from the CD.
After two more meetings, it was clear this "study" was
not that, rather the CD was being rammed down our throats, even though there
was growing opposition and resistance to the CD. Every effort to hear opposing
views was squashed by the city reps, and the presentations were repeats of the
same info with our opposition to the way things were going falling on deaf ears.
During our first breakout session in meeting three,
residents of my sub-division, Briar Creek Estates, voted 21 to 0 that the
existing deed restrictions were to be left as is. Six
voted to have them made into a CD, and 18 voted that they did not want a CD at
all. When the 4th and last meeting was held, the
handout with the results from our session were so inaccurate that many on the
floor spoke out, but were told to save it for the breakout session to come.
It was announced at the 4th meeting that the duplexes were at last granted
exemption from the CD, and they received that in writing. In
our breakout session, Sandberg was to be the
moderator, but our group was so incensed at the distortion of the
minutes of the first
sessions, Sandberg was not allowed to continue until
the misrepresentations were
It was then decided that we should vote on whether or not anyone wanted a CD in
our neighborhood or not. The vote: 3 in favor,
We asked Lief how we could have our sub-division excluded like the duplex
owners, and he stated that with this latest vote we were well on our way to just
that. This remains to be seen.
One of neighbor stated he was in favor of the CD when
we first stared this, but with the way the process had
been handled he was now against it. Another
stated that much of our
apprehension was due to the perception that this thing was like the Queen Mary
coming at us with no way to stop it.
Both of these statements are true, and the whole process should be
scrapped as well as this so-called study.
One neighbor met with representatives from the
City of Dallas Plan Commission,
and was told the CD was a done deal in their view.
In a later voice message to the same neighbor,
a P&Z representative stated
the process was indeed flawed and they would be working with the city attorneys
to revamp the whole process. One even said that
they would definitely not want to live in a CD!
No word on when our fifth meeting will be held, but I will advise if there is
It seems that the city has a hidden agenda, or they would be more willing to
discuss openly at the meetings, rather than railroad this thing through in the
face of such vocal opposition. This fact alone calls into question the motives
of the city in this matter.
I am hoping that this CD can be stopped and am proud the majority of my
neighbors have stood against this misrepresented process. I
am saddened at the prospect that either way, this issue has accomplished nothing
more than a damaging rift between neighbors in a neighborhood I have called home
for the better part of 47 years. Until this issue,
everyone has lived in harmony and peace.
One note of interest: The city webpage has not posted any of the minutes from
our meetings since the July meeting. Wonder why?
Appreciate your time and any further insight into this mess!