Wednesday, April 2, 2014

"All the Beachfront on Renner"

Earlier, I looked at the GreenVUE apartment complex under construction at Greenville Ave. and Collins Blvd. and was disappointed in its failings as transit-oriented development. Today, I look north to another apartment complex under construction "just south of State Farm and the CityLine mixed-use development at Plano and Renner roads". It doesn't have a name yet that I know.

After the jump, you guessed it, another opportunity lost.

The Dallas Morning News has the story. The News doesn't say so explicitly, but this is another standard 1980s apartment complex. I guess the description, "just south of ... the CityLine mixed-use development," means these apartments themselves don't pretend to be transit-oriented or mixed-use. Why the city allowed this type of construction this close to a DART station is a frustrating mystery. Another opportunity lost. Worse, the developer brags that he controls even more land to expand. "We have all the beachfront on Renner," he tells The Dallas Morning News.

Not only are these apartments not compatible with what mixed-use development exists to the north, the apartments are completely oblivious to the parkland to the south. The story makes no mention of Richardson's gem of nature, the Spring Creek Nature Area, which is just across the street from all that "beachfront on Renner." Instead of developing something that takes advantage of the nearby park, it's like the developer isn't even aware that the park exists. Which might be the case: the generic apartments look like they could have been designed for anywhere, like say a cotton field in Frisco. These apartments are just one more encroachment on Richardson's hidden treasure of nature, strangling it rather than enhancing it.

Well, I guess there's still hope for Palisades Village. OTOH, the plans for Palisades seem to be oblivious of the DART station across Central Expressway. When this project was first being touted to Richardson residents, a bike/pedestrian bridge over Central was highlighted. Today? Not a sign of it anymore.

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