What The Hell is Wrong With Dallas?

In my latest contribution for Joel Kotkin’s The New Geography, I say Texas owes a whole lot to it’s growing immigrant population! The numbers are in and Texas grew more than any other state in the union in the last census report.

But the biggest loser of them all seems to be Dallas. While Texas leapt by 20%, Dallas grew by barely one per cent, and Fort Worth across the way exploded, just like Austin, San Antonio, El Paso and, to some extent, Houston, but mostly Houston suburban areas.

So what the hell is wrong with Dallas? Why are we not growing? Experts say this may be that we have had our growth day in the sun, are now land-locked and can only build on density, re-gentrify neighborhoods. That is certainly happening in parts of East Dallas and South Dallas, but still, when you are in competition with the suburbs and pretty manicured areas like Tucker Hill up there in Allen, well who wins? And will we ever have significantly better DISD? Here is what a commenter (from a teacher, no less) wrote on The Observer:

Until recently, our plan was to add on a little bit, maybe put in a small pool, etc. since our children attend excellent private high schools and we don’t want to move them. We love our neighborhood and our jobs. We’ve been happy here.

But lately we have come to realize that, thanks to DISD, our home will only appreciate so much. People can’t afford expensive homes and private school tuition. Since DISD caps any return on investment, developers have little interest in rehabbing blighted neighborhoods. People with children who can’t afford tuition will not invest within DISD boundaries. The blight spreads like a virus.

No one in city leadership seems to get the connection between schools and blight. The lack of blight in HP isn’t bc the people are rich, it’s bc the schools are good and people get rich from the appreciation on their homes.

And then there’s city govt. We’re taxed and taxed for dwindling services and surly city staffers. Every single thing is filtered through race.

Along your lines, our new plan is to get the kids through high school, cash out what we can from our home, and move somewhere small, sane, and at least a little bit scenic.

The fancy bridge does nothing for us, so we, in turn, can do nothing for the people (and their families) we would otherwise employ to design and remodel our home.

Dallas just doesn’t make financial sense anymore. Thus the growth of any place with decent schools; almost everyone would rather spend their money on a nice home with pool and not on private school tuition.

Bam — that says a lot. Is DISD really holding Dallas back? How about always calling the race card in city politics? Blaming the rich? Is it because of people like Eddie Bernice Johnson who could be beaten by a thoughtful, intelligent candidate not clutching a bible and Jesus to his chest? Do we need more mature city leaders? A more powerful Mayor, perhaps?

What the hell is wrong with Dallas?

24 Comment

  • Bingo! Couldn't have put it better.

  • Bingo! Couldn't have put it better.

  • That summed up the situation nicely. But as gas prices continue to rise and as regional population growth clogs freeways, more people will appreciate Dallas' proximity to key amenities such as downtown workplaces, Arts District, AAC, etc. For some that won't trump the schools/government problems, but for others it will.

  • That summed up the situation nicely. But as gas prices continue to rise and as regional population growth clogs freeways, more people will appreciate Dallas' proximity to key amenities such as downtown workplaces, Arts District, AAC, etc. For some that won't trump the schools/government problems, but for others it will.

  • Location, location, location. 60% or more of DISD is hispanic, many illegal with failing grades and dropping out at astonishing levels, the schools are in a shambles, and the instruction and morale dismal. Who wants to live and send their kids to school here? The only thing propping up Dallas is the influx of young single professionals. Families have moved on, as they always have, to the suburbs. Quite frankly, I am tired of the high taxes, high crime, and the low level of services. I am moving to the suburbs myself whenever (if ever) I finally sell my home.

  • Location, location, location. 60% or more of DISD is hispanic, many illegal with failing grades and dropping out at astonishing levels, the schools are in a shambles, and the instruction and morale dismal. Who wants to live and send their kids to school here? The only thing propping up Dallas is the influx of young single professionals. Families have moved on, as they always have, to the suburbs. Quite frankly, I am tired of the high taxes, high crime, and the low level of services. I am moving to the suburbs myself whenever (if ever) I finally sell my home.

  • Do you think Park Cities is suffocating us? Taking away our higher wage earners who (rightfully) (understandably) want to live there because of the better schools and lower crime?

  • Do you think Park Cities is suffocating us? Taking away our higher wage earners who (rightfully) (understandably) want to live there because of the better schools and lower crime?

  • I think this is the natural cycle of all real estate — Park Cities is not "suffocating" anyone. There are rich, middle and working class. Each feeds off the other. DISD has been in miserable shape for years — maybe a few select schools are good here and there, but overall, for all the money we pour into it, it's a total failure. Has hurt our real estate values for 35 years.

  • I think this is the natural cycle of all real estate — Park Cities is not "suffocating" anyone. There are rich, middle and working class. Each feeds off the other. DISD has been in miserable shape for years — maybe a few select schools are good here and there, but overall, for all the money we pour into it, it's a total failure. Has hurt our real estate values for 35 years.

  • Dallas is slower to grow because we have used up virtually all the land around us, and the recession slowed down the re-gentrification that was jump-started in many areas. Be patient, it will come back. As long as the city doesn't hamper it, of course.

  • Dallas is slower to grow because we have used up virtually all the land around us, and the recession slowed down the re-gentrification that was jump-started in many areas. Be patient, it will come back. As long as the city doesn't hamper it, of course.

  • Dallas is a place to live.
    We aren't "anywhere else" we are Dallas.
    I will can retire here and use Dallas as a Home base as I go other places where there are sights to be seen and things to be done.

  • Dallas is a place to live.
    We aren't "anywhere else" we are Dallas.
    I will can retire here and use Dallas as a Home base as I go other places where there are sights to be seen and things to be done.

  • As long as we elect the right people to the City Council and get the right mayor. We've got to get rid of Angela Hunt!

  • As long as we elect the right people to the City Council and get the right mayor. We've got to get rid of Angela Hunt!

  • Angela Hunt and about six others who are holding this city back. It's almost a line across the Trinity now as to who wants forward progress and who wants to mooch off the backs of the so-called wealthy.

  • Angela Hunt and about six others who are holding this city back. It's almost a line across the Trinity now as to who wants forward progress and who wants to mooch off the backs of the so-called wealthy.

  • It is DISD, but the situation can't only be blamed on the people running DISD, sub-optimal as they may be.

    No, the problem is that any school system that is 95% + black or Hispanic is going to be pretty mediocre. The only way to improve is to make little islands where whites/Asians are the majority. The people in Lakewood have figured this out.

    But, since the leaders are elected by blacks and Hispanics, there's no incentive to cater to Whitey — hence the continual attacks on the magnets. So, DISD is basically an insoluble problem.

    '“Bad Students”—Unmentionable Cause Of The Great Achievement Gap'
    http://www.vdare.com/sailer/100829_weissberg.htm

  • It is DISD, but the situation can't only be blamed on the people running DISD, sub-optimal as they may be.

    No, the problem is that any school system that is 95% + black or Hispanic is going to be pretty mediocre. The only way to improve is to make little islands where whites/Asians are the majority. The people in Lakewood have figured this out.

    But, since the leaders are elected by blacks and Hispanics, there's no incentive to cater to Whitey — hence the continual attacks on the magnets. So, DISD is basically an insoluble problem.

    '“Bad Students”—Unmentionable Cause Of The Great Achievement Gap'
    http://www.vdare.com/sailer/100829_weissberg.htm

  • This is your best writing yet!

  • This is your best writing yet!

  • Well, all of the above sounds good and holds some truth on several levels…. but….at one point in Dallas's career, we were going to be a booming seaport to ship cotten from…did I mention The Trinity was a MUD BOTTOM river…when that didn't work, we just atarted throwing money at Dallas and we became a glorious place to do busniness….from then to now, we are only able to shop, eat, and do BIG business…we never had our own idnetity, but we do now…the lagest Arts centered district in the world… have you forgotten LOCATION, , LOCATION, LOCATION ? I sort of think the Park Cities is a DEvine location…you get anywhere fast…shopping; HP Village, North Park, Greenville and then some, top of the line schools complete with athletics for all, and Cafe Pacific for desert…Dallas has always been a place that "if you have it, I want it….and I want to know how much you piad for it"

    People who have money in Park Cities, have it for a reason…they are smart ! and…almost never pay retail…truly! For many, living in the Park Cities is an excellent business decision….wherer can you park your money and walk off and leave it unattended and earn 6% on a bad day and sometimes 32%…as John Quinon of 20/20 says…."what would yo do?"

    I hope I live to see DISD get truned around…if it hadn't been for "BIG BUSINESS" leaders of Dallas during "dumpling" Laura MIller's rein, we would propbably still be trying to float cotten down the Trinity on a barge….

    Remember the song, " Greensleeves"….? I know, not my fav either, but it could soon be our theme song if people don't stop some of the goof balls on our City Council…talk about realty TV…right here in River City….

  • Well, all of the above sounds good and holds some truth on several levels…. but….at one point in Dallas's career, we were going to be a booming seaport to ship cotten from…did I mention The Trinity was a MUD BOTTOM river…when that didn't work, we just atarted throwing money at Dallas and we became a glorious place to do busniness….from then to now, we are only able to shop, eat, and do BIG business…we never had our own idnetity, but we do now…the lagest Arts centered district in the world… have you forgotten LOCATION, , LOCATION, LOCATION ? I sort of think the Park Cities is a DEvine location…you get anywhere fast…shopping; HP Village, North Park, Greenville and then some, top of the line schools complete with athletics for all, and Cafe Pacific for desert…Dallas has always been a place that "if you have it, I want it….and I want to know how much you piad for it"

    People who have money in Park Cities, have it for a reason…they are smart ! and…almost never pay retail…truly! For many, living in the Park Cities is an excellent business decision….wherer can you park your money and walk off and leave it unattended and earn 6% on a bad day and sometimes 32%…as John Quinon of 20/20 says…."what would yo do?"

    I hope I live to see DISD get truned around…if it hadn't been for "BIG BUSINESS" leaders of Dallas during "dumpling" Laura MIller's rein, we would propbably still be trying to float cotten down the Trinity on a barge….

    Remember the song, " Greensleeves"….? I know, not my fav either, but it could soon be our theme song if people don't stop some of the goof balls on our City Council…talk about realty TV…right here in River City….