South Dallas/Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report. City of Dallas October 2003

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1 South Dallas/Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report City of Dallas October 2003

2 South Dallas/Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report Lead Consultant: Hargreaves Associates San Francisco, California Consultant Team: Carter & Burgess, Inc. Dallas, Texas Chan Krieger & Associates Boston, Massachusetts BBC Research & Consulting Denver, Colorado Baker Consulting Associates Dallas, Texas October 2003

3 Table of Contents Executive Summary...1 Introduction...4 Vision and Objectives...6 Market Analysis...7 Site Analysis/Concept Development...16 Implementation Strategy...35 i

4 This Page Intentionally Left Blank.

5 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report Executive Summary As a parallel initiative to the Comprehensive Development Plan for Fair Park, this study presents an evaluation for a potential entertainment district in South Dallas/Fair Park, adjacent to Fair Park. This study evaluated the potential for development focused on African-American needs for entertainment and related retail goods and services. Once, a prominent residential neighborhood, retail center, and entertainment district, the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood has experienced decline and neglect of its infrastructure, housing, and businesses. The South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood is well positioned to capitalize on growing momentum and a resurgence. Building on an increased attention on major corridors of the area, investment in Fair Park and the Southern Sector of Dallas, and the future development of the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) M.L.K. Transit Station and the future Southeast Corridor Light Rail Transit line, the time is right for re-development in South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood. The re-development of the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood is tied closely with Fair Park achieving its full potential as a year-round, urban cultural park as identified in the Fair Park Comprehensive Development Plan. It has been noted by prominent City leaders, as goes Fair Park, so goes South Dallas. Likewise, the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood needs to leverage the tremendous traffic and activity generated by Fair Park in terms of economic development potential and the more than seven (7) million visitors annually. This synergy will lead to both the neighborhood and Fair Park achieving their vision and objectives, and being recognized as major destinations within Dallas and the region. Working closely with community leaders and stakeholders, the following vision and objectives were developed and used to evaluate the potential of an entertainment district in the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood Vision The vision for the South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District is: To develop an Afro-Centric cultural district that offers a mixture of entertainment, retail, restaurant, and personal service venues that economically benefits the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood and creates synergy with Fair Park. Objective The overall guiding objective is to locate and realize a viable entertainment district that will support other retail and personal service needs of the South Dallas Community and Fair Park. Market Assessment Through both qualitative and quantitative research, there appears to be tremendous market potential for an entertainment district in the South Dallas/Fair Park area. This assessment focused primarily on the African- 1

6 American market, which regionally has an annual target spending for entertainment district related activities in excess of $1.9 billion annually. Previous studies identified an unmet demand for retail space with a 65% difference in the number of retail establishments per 1,000 persons in the southern sector of Dallas as compared to the Northern Sector of Dallas. While there are several prominent entertainment districts in Dallas including Deep Ellum, Greenvile Avenue, West End Marketplace, and Bishop Arts District, these districts do not primarily target the African-American market. Through close involvement and input, the findings of the market assessment concluded that there is enthusiastic support by the community for development of an entertainment district but that the district should offer more than pure entertainment. The service offerings should include a mixture of entertainment, dining, retail, personal service venues, and related services. Site Analysis/Concept Development Site analysis identified six potential locations adjacent to Fair Park and evaluated the opportunities and constraints for each. Based on the vision and objectives identified through the community input process, four of the six sites were eliminated for consideration for a variety of reasons. Sites that were located too close to potential higher density residential areas (such as the Trunk Avenue Station) were eliminated as were sites that were viewed as too far removed from the South Dallas community and cultural venues that would complement entertainment uses (e.g.: African-American Museum or the South Dallas Cultural Center). Two (2) possible sites for a proposed entertainment district were selected: Grand Avenue/Fourth Street corridor from R.B. Cullum Boulevard to Trunk Avenue and Second Avenue from Fitzhugh to Scyene Road. Consensus was developed for this selection process with the community stakeholder group and concepts were developed to depict the vision for development opportunities. The Grand Avenue/Fourth Street corridor plan envisions future retail development on parcels to the west of Grand Avenue and infill residential development to the east of Grand Avenue near the DART Station. In addition to Grand Avenue, the vision suggests that Fourth Avenue would play a much larger role in connecting an entertainment district to adjacent use and would become a pedestrian friendly route for transit riders in the future. The Second Avenue Entertainment District envisions a development reminiscent of Mills City, the historic district that originally occupied this area. Entertainment uses would extend from Fitzhugh on the west to Scyene on the east. Surface parking for entertainment uses would be provided between Second Avenue and R.B. Cullum, with infill housing and community retail services on the opposite side of Second Avenue to reduce the impacts on the adjacent Fitzhugh neighborhood. The highly visible corner of Scyene and Second Avenue would be anchored with a larger retail venue or entertainment venue such as a movie theater. 2

7 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report Conclusion The potential for development of one or both entertainment district sites at Grand Avenue/Fourth Avenue and Second Avenue, for a mix of entertainment and retail uses, is strong. Both sites offer different strengths and opportunities. The team has identified that there is an unmet demand for retail space, tremendous market potential with more than $1.9 billion in target spending for the proposed development activities, strong community support, and potential development locations. Focusing on a wide range of entertainment, dining, and related retail services, this plan, with the appropriate economic conditions, has the potential to achieve the vision and objectives identified and create synergy with Fair Park. 3

8 Introduction In September 2002, the City of Dallas Park and Recreation Department initiated a Comprehensive Development Plan for Fair Park. As a parallel study, Leo Cheney, Dallas City Councilmember, District 7, requested that an evaluation be performed for an Entertainment District in the adjacent neighborhood of South Dallas/Fair Park. As goes Fair Park, so goes South Dallas, and vice versa, stated Councilmember Cheney. This study evaluated the potential for development focused on African-American needs for entertainment and related retail goods and services. The study area for this project consisted of areas immediately adjacent to Fair Park in the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood. South Dallas/Fair Park Entertainment District Study Area Fair Park Once, a prominent residential neighborhood, retail center, and entertainment district, the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood has experienced decline and neglect of its infrastructure, housing, and businesses. However, with an increased attention on major corridors of the area, investment in Fair Park and the Southern Sector of Dallas, and the future development of the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) M.L.K. Transit Station and the future Southeast Corridor Light Rail Transit line, the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood is well positioned to capitalize on a growing momentum and resurgence. Figure 1 South Dallas/Fair Park Entertainment District Study Area 4

9 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report The re-development of the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood is tied closely with Fair Park achieving its full potential as a year-round, urban cultural park. Likewise, the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood needs to leverage the tremendous traffic and activity generated by the seven (7) million people visiting Fair Park annually. This synergy will lead to both the neighborhood and Fair Park achieving their objectives and equally recognized as major destinations within Dallas and the region. By creating development opportunities that offer local and regional alternatives for entertainment, retail, and related services, the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood can also attract economic activity from outside its geographic boundaries, serving as a regional destination that also supports Fair Parks mission as a Signature Park, of Dallas. This wider market appeal will provide additional economic activity to local businesses to grow and prosper as well as create an inviting atmosphere for visitors to Fair Park. Entertainment District located in the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood and focused on the needs of the African-American community, the local neighborhood and the regional market place. Report Format This report presents the vision and objectives, market and site analysis, concept development, and implementation strategies for an entertainment district and related development opportunities. It is designed to serve as a stand-alone report from the Fair Park Comprehensive Development Plan, but integrates concepts and strategies to create synergy between Fair Park and potential development of an entertainment district in the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood. Methodology The Adjacent Neighborhood Entertainment District Study was conducted as a parallel project to the Fair Park Comprehensive Development Plan and included joint and separate processes. This study included a tremendous amount of public involvement including working closely with a community stakeholder group. This study was founded with a vision outlined by Councilmember Leo Cheney and focused on evaluating the market, potential sites, concept development, and implementation strategies for an 5

10 Vision and Objectives Vision The vision for the South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District is: To develop an Afro-Centric cultural district that offers a mixture of entertainment, retail, restaurant, and personal service venues that economically benefits the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood and creates synergy with Fair Park. Objectives The overall guiding objective is to locate and realize a viable entertainment district that will be support other necessary objectives of the South Dallas Community and Fair Park. Through a series of work sessions with stakeholders including neighborhood leaders, City officials, and the community at large, the following objectives were developed and used to evaluate potential entertainment district in the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood: Improve visual/physical qualities of South Dallas/Fair Park to encourage re-investment and increased attendance/visitorship Provide needed goods and services to South Dallas/Fair Park residents Advocate for better code enforcement, crime prevention and city maintenance in South Dallas/Fair Park Provide opportunities for existing South Dallas/Fair Park businesses to grow Mix regional retailers with local business to ensure stability and long term community benefits Provide varied housing opportunities for existing residents and new residents wishing to move to South Dallas Build higher density housing near transit stations to take advantage of transit benefits and to increase customer population Locate appropriate entertainment uses in locations with minimal effects on residences and schools Mix entertainment uses with other retail uses such as restaurants, bookstores and cultural facilities 6

11 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report Market Analysis The market analysis consisted of market characterization and quantification, competitive assessment / comparables analysis and a preliminary economic and market assessment. The study began by evaluating previous studies and reports related to South Dallas. These reports included: The Southern Sector Initiative, 1997 South Dallas/Fair Park Economic Development Corridor Plan, 2001 Phase One Report, South Dallas Moratorium, 2000 South Dallas/Fair Park LRT Station Summary Report, 1999 In evaluating these reports, it is abundantly clear that the Southern Sector of Dallas is prime for investment and development. The Southern Sector of Dallas is a large, geographic area made up of diverse communities. Representing 49% of the City s land mass, the Southern Sector boasts less traffic congestion, lower land costs, major thoroughfares and access to a large, stable supply of labor. Combined, these factors make the Southern Sector an extremely viable resource for business and job development and/or expansion. As a major component of the Southern Sector, the South Dallas / Fair Park community has a number of current and planned initiatives under way. Initiatives ranging from Community Development Corporation (CDC) sponsored housing, social service, and economic development projects to the Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART) M.L.K. Transit Station and the future Southeast Corridor Light Rail Transit line. The growing number of new businesses along R.B. Cullum Boulevard and Martin Luther King (M.L.K.) Boulevard, efforts such as the M.L.K. Main Street Project and the continued growth and success of the Fair Park are signs that the area is experiencing a positive change. This will be an important factor in generating new levels of development intensity and commercial nodes based on traffic generated by light rail transit stations and increased activity at Fair Park. Based on findings from Number of Retail Establishments previous studies, the Per 1,000 Persons market in the Southern Sector of Dallas is grossly underserved, particularly % in retail services. Figure 2 presents this gap, a 65% difference in the number 3.0 of retail establishments per 1,000 persons as Northern Southern compared to the Northern Dallas* Sector Sector of Dallas as identified in the Southern Figure 2 Retail Outlet Comparison Sector Initiative report. 7

12 A 1995 Community Needs Assessment survey indicated that residents in Southern Dallas districts were seven (7) times more likely than other Dallas respondents to identify access to quality shopping as a major neighborhood problem. These findings begin to frame a bigger need than simply entertainment. Through interviews with stakeholders and community leaders, the need for basic personal service retail venues was the largest area of need identified. Coupled with the potential for entertainment venues working synergistically with Fair Park, a mixed use retail/commercial development opportunity emerged. Denton Ft. Worth Dallas McKinney Market Characterization and Quantification To better understand and quantify the market for the South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District, five market segments were identified: National: Conventioneers/ Tourists Regional: Four-county Metroplex Greater Dallas: Dallas County Community: Southern Sector of Dallas Neighborhood: South Dallas/ Fair Park Of the five segments, Regional, Greater Dallas, Community, and Neighborhood were targeted as the potential market. Legend Regional Greater Dallas Southern Sector South Dallas/Fair Park Figure 3 Market Segments 8

13 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report To quantify the market potential of the identified segments, Figure 4 is a breakdown of the African-American population and income. Market Segment Total Segment Total Segment Population Income South Dallas/Fair Park 16,293 $158 Million Balance of Southern 209,745 $2.5 Billion Sector Balance of Greater 447,698 $5.3 Billion Dallas Balance of 4 County 678,017 $5.1 Billion Region Total Region 1,351,753 $13.1 Billion Figure 4 African-American Population and Income Breakdown by Segment Source: 2000 U.S. Census Beale Street, Memphis, Tennessee From the $13.1 billion in total income, Figure 5 on the following page presents estimated expenditures by African-Americans for entertainment and related activities. Total annual target spending for the entertainment district related activities reach in excess of $1.9 billion annually. Competitive Assessment/Comparables Analysis The original model for the South Dallas/Fair Park Entertainment District was that of Beale Street in Memphis, Tennessee. Beale Street, a three block section of downtown Memphis was redeveloped from historical buildings and consists primarily of nightclubs. Local examples of comparable developments, albeit for a different market, include the West End Marketplace, Deep Ellum, Greenville Avenue, and Bishop Arts District. Photos of these districts are shown on page 11. These districts offer entertainment and dining with novelty retail venues. These entertainment districts do not target the African-American market. 9

14 Total Income Disposable Income (after taxes) Entertainment Spending Dining Spending Personal Care Products and Services Apparel and Services Reading Target Spending Market Segment ($Million) ($Million) ($Million) ($Million) ($Million) ($Million) ($Million) ($Million) South Dallas/Fair Park $158 $134 $6 $9 $7 $2 $0 $24 Balance of Southern Sector $2,575 $2,189 $96 $142 $112 $28 $7 $385 Balance of Greater Dallas $5,280 $4,488 $197 $292 $229 $58 $13 $790 Balance of 4 County Region $5,110 $4,344 $191 $282 $222 $56 $13 $765 Total Region $13,123 $11,155 $491 $725 $569 $145 $33 $1,963 Figure 5 African-American Income and Expenditure Potential Source: 2000 U.S. Census; U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Consumer Expenditure Survey,

15 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report West End Marketplace Dallas, Texas Greenville Avenue, Dallas, Texas Deep Ellum Dallas, Texas Bishop Arts District, Dallas, Texas 11

16 While there are pockets of entertainment, dining, retail, and personal service venues throughout Dallas that focus on the African-American market, there is no single comparable defined district in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex that presents a comprehensive selection of the envisioned entertainment district attractions. Wynnewood Village Shopping Center in South Oak Cliff serves as a model for a larger spectrum of retail and personal service offerings focused on the African-American market but does not offer significant entertainment venues. Figure 6 on the following page identifies competitive entertainment and dining venues. These represent venues frequented by African-American clientele and present the flavor of potential venues for the proposed South Dallas/Fair Park Entertainment District. Wynnewood Village Shopping Center, Dallas, Texas 12

17 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report Denton McKinney Touch of Blues Bar & Dinner Club The Aragon Ballroom Real Thing Ft. Worth Broadway Grill Stone Trail Caribbean Grill Black Images Book Bazaar Joe s Big Bamboo Big T Bazaar Jamies Nightclub Liquid In The Arcadia Cutters Bar & Grill Shark Club & Grill Speed s Billiards & Games Bay Leaf Dallas Blackberry s Roackafella s Diamonds Club Coach s Corner Club Dream Club G.G. s JazzClub Bruton Bazaar Mimo RL s Blues Palace RL s Blues Palace No.2 KC Bar & Grill Bob s Lounge Lounge Café & Sports Bar Over The Hill Club Kliff Klub Figure 6 Competitive Venues in Dallas/Fort Worth Area 13

18 Market Assessment During the market analysis, it became apparent that the potential for development in the South Dallas/Fair Park neighborhood extends well beyond entertainment and dining and includes retail and personal service venues. As identified in the objectives developed in conjunction with local stakeholders and community leaders, a variety of development opportunities exist. Community Retail and Services Office Space Cultural Experience Restaurants Entertainment Figure 7 presents a matrix of development opportunities by market segment. Opportunities that are viable for one segment may not be feasible or applicable to another segment. Entertainment, restaurants, cultural experiences, and conventions are opportunities or attractions that have the ability to draw from all market segments, including the national segment, while office space and community retail and services are reserved for a more local patron. A description of these segments follows: National Regional Greater Dallas Southern Sector South Dallas/Fair Park Figure 7 Development Opportunities by Market Segment destination for entertainment, dining, and cultural experiences as well as specialty retail outlets. National: The National market segment consists of visitors, tourists, and conventioneers who want to experience a unique environment or destination in one location. This segment will likely be staying at hotels or at private homes. Regional: The Regional market segment are those who will likely visit Fair Park or other local cultural institutions and will be attracted to a unique Greater Dallas: The Greater Dallas market segment are consumers who will be attracted to a unique destination for entertainment, dining, and cultural experiences as well as specialty and general retail outlets focused on specific market needs as well as potential for office space for business opportunities. They are likely to drive and/or take DART to this location. Southern Sector: The Southern Sector market segment are those consumers who are currently underserved by market offerings in Southern 14

19 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report Dallas. They will be attracted to this location for all aspects of entertainment, dining, cultural experiences, office space, and retail and community services. This market segment is currently driving or utilizing DART for transportation to areas outside of the Southern Sector for these service offerings. With the forthcoming development of the DART M.L.K. transit station and future Light Rail Transit, this is a prime location. South Dallas/Fair Park: The South Dallas/Fair Park market segment are the local consumers who will take advantage of all service offerings with the most emphasis on dining and community retail and personal service venues. These consumers would have the opportunity to live, work, shop, and entertain within their neighborhood. dining, retail, personal service venues, and related services. This is supported by an annual target spending for entertainment district related activities in excess of $1.9 billion annually by the African-American community, an unmet demand for retail outlets in the southern sector of Dallas, no comparable competition, and enthusiastic support by the community. The challenge will be in implementation of the vision. The following sections of this report present a vision and implementation strategy for this plan. Market Changes While this study focused on the development of an entertainment district geared towards the African-American market, it should be noted that there is tremendous market potential in other demographic sectors including significant growth in the Hispanic population, particularly in close proximity to Fair Park. These demographic sectors represent a very large and diverse secondary market for entertainment and retail developments to attract. Market Assessment Conclusion In conclusion, through both qualitative and quantitative research, there appears to be tremendous market potential for an entertainment district in the South Dallas/Fair Park area that offers a mixture of entertainment, 15

20 Site Analysis/Concept Development The consultant team conducted a site analysis to identify opportunities and constraints. The team evaluated the findings and identified prospective locations for development based on the vision and objectives identified through community input process. Following a more detailed evaluation, two (2) possible sites for a proposed entertainment district were selected and concepts developed to depict the vision for development opportunities. Figure 8 on the following page depicts the six sites that were evaluated for an emerging entertainment district. The six evaluated sites include linear strips along Second Avenue, Grand, MLK, Robert B. Cullum Boulevards. Also considered were two districts near future light rail transit stops at Parry Avenue and Trunk Avenue near MLK. The six sites were evaluated for the desired land use and physical characteristics in accordance with the South Dallas Corridor Economic Development Plan and planned development zoning, future plans for Fair Park, and DART plans for future rail alignments and stations. Each site was also reviewed for it s potential as a successful venue for a range of retail uses that would, as suggested by the previous analysis, support and complement entertainment uses (e.g., specialty retail). Through a series of work sessions with the community stakeholder group, each site was analyzed and characterized to better understand how each site supported the greater community needs. Figures 9 and 10 present this analysis for the six sites. Community initiatives, such as Ebon Village housing and Wheatley Place Historic District were also considered. Perhaps most importantly, initiatives in Fair Park, as outlined in the Fair Park Comprehensive Development Plan, being produced concurrently, were considered for ways in which improvements in Fair Park would create synergy with an adjacent entertainment district. 16

21 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report N Figure 8 Development Opportunity Sites 17

22 18 Figure 9 Site Analysis

23 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report Figure 10 Site Analysis 19

24 Figure 11 indicates the selected sites to be considered. Four of the six sites were eliminated from consideration for a variety of reasons. Sites that were located too close to potential higher density residential areas (such as the Trunk Avenue Station) were eliminated as were sites that were viewed as too far removed from the South Dallas community and cultural venues that would complement entertainment uses (e.g.: African-American Museum or the South Dallas Cultural Center). The sites were also selected for their redevelopment potential, such as considering the relative affordability of sites along Grand and Second Avenues for a variety of entertainment uses. 20

25 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report N Grand Avenue/Fourth Avenue Corridor Second Avenue Corridor Figure 11 Proposed Entertainment District Sites 21

26 Figure 12 identifies the specific conditions along Grand Avenue and the advantages of the site for entertainment uses including proximity to cultural facilities within Fair Park, and along Grand Avenue and the potential for colocating with other retail uses. The site is also within a short walking distance of the planned DART M.L.K. Transit Station on Trunk Avenue. 22

27 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report N Grand Avenue/Fourth Avenue Existing Conditions Currently vacant or underutilized buildings Vacant land available for redevelopment Street widths allow for Grand Avenue to have one lane in each direction with on-street parking Visibility from R.B. Cullum One of the Gateways to Fair Park Figure 12 Grand Avenue/ Fourth Avenue Existing Conditions 23

28 Figure 13 depicts the vision for a Grand Avenue/Fourth Avenue Entertainment/Mixed-Use District that would run from R.B. Cullum Boulevard to Trunk Avenue. The drawing illustrates the strategic siting of a two-block entertainment district located between Fair Park and the planned DART M.L.K. Station at Trunk Avenue. The plan envisions future retail development on parcels to the west of Grand Avenue and infill residential development to the east of Grand Avenue near the DART Station. In addition to Grand Avenue, the vision suggests that Fourth Avenue would play a much larger role in connecting an entertainment district to adjacent uses, and would become a pedestrian friendly route for transit riders in the future. Proposed changes to R.B. Cullum, including a narrowing of the median to facilitate a better connection between a Grand Avenue entertainment district and new Fair Park cultural facilities that are planned to extend closer to R.B. Cullum and the South Dallas community in the future. 24

29 South Dallas / Fair Park Entertainment District Study Final Report N Grand Ave. Grand Avenue/Fourth Avenue Entertainment/Mixed-Use District Vision New community/ performance venue Entertainment set within larger retail development Fourth Street becomes pedestrian friendly corridor of district New housing near DART station Adjacent to proposed museums on R.B. Cullum Fourth Avenue R.B. Cullum M.L.K. Boulevard Figure 13 Grand Avenue/ Fourth Avenue Concept Development Vision 25

30 Figure 14 illustrates the look of a Grand Avenue/Fourth Avenue Entertainment/Mixed-Use District, including the introduction of new construction with adaptive re-use of industrial buildings for a variety of retail and entertainment uses. The plan suggests that parallel street parking be added to Grand Avenue and street level amenities be provided to create a more pedestrian friendly environment for the type of strolling necessary to support a retail/entertainment district. Surface parking would be provided at the rear and sides of development to reduce gaps in the retail frontage, an important consideration in any retail district. Utilities would be placed underground to improve the aesthetics of the street and bring sidewalks up to code standards. 26

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