The original guide for the Dallas Arts District, the Sasaki Plan, is over 32 years old. It no longer serves the functions that the district needs it to. So officials agree that a new development plan for the city’s arts district is long overdue.

The area in question spans roughly 17 acres of the downtown Dallas area. The group that manages it, The Dallas Arts District, has come together to narrow down the new development plans to four design firms to potentially work with in creating a new strategy for the arts district.


Four Design Firm Finalists, One Winning Firm Finally Declared

The four finalists included Stoss and Shop as well as Sasaki Associates, who were linked to the original plan of the arts district. The four firms presented their plans to the Dallas Arts District in August. Now the group has recently made their official selection from the finalists.

Boston-based design firm, NBBJ, was selected for their winning development plan for the Dallas Arts District. The firm has produced design work for locations from Seattle to China, and they also produced the Balanced Vision Plan for the Trinity River Parkway.

NBBJ’s considerable expertise made them the ideal choice for handling the future development designs of the Dallas Arts District. The group hopes to revitalize the downtown area after it’s slow decline in the years since the Sasaki Plan became less relevant to the modern needs of the Dallas arts community.


Repeating the Success of the Original Sasaki Plan for a Modern Age

The proposed plan will offer a valuable facelift to the area, and the Dallas Arts District hopes that the newly-revamped district will lure in more consumers as well as businesses and general interest in the area and the city’s artistic community.

The Sasaki Plan was responsible for creating high-grade commercial real estate development that brought about some of Dallas’ most respected arts institutions in one central location, such as the Dallas Opera, the Dallas Theater Center, the Dallas Symphony, and the Dallas Museum of Art. The cultural and economic benefits those cornerstones brought to the city of Dallas was all thanks to the ingenuity of the Sasaki Plan.

But the changing needs of the Dallas arts community as well as the lack of new development in the area has created a sense of stagnation in the district, and numbers of consumers and prospective businesses have steadily declined. Now, with the plans of another district overhaul, the Dallas Arts District hopes to recreate the success of the original Sasaki Plan and breathe new life back into the downtown Dallas arts area.


Traffic Fixes Are First on the List

The Sasaki Plan successfully brought commercial business to the Dallas area, but it failed to properly address the traffic issues in the area that still plague the Arts District to this day. The ineffective street planning makes it difficult and dangerous for pedestrians to get from the parking garages to the arts facilities themselves.

The new downtown development plan by NBBJ hopes to address these traffic and pedestrian concerns, as well as reshape, restructure, and revitalize the downtown Dallas Arts District back to its former glory with some modern updates on the horizon.