Dallas Looking At How To Improve White Rock Lake

DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – There’s no question White Rock Lake in Dallas is a popular recreation spot. The question a lot of people are asking is whether or not it’s reached its full potential.

There’s talk about doing more with the publicly owned property.  Right now, it’s just talk. But some people in high places are listening.

There’s already so much to like about White Rock Lake.  Mark Feltner comes for the Dog Park.   “It’s just a chance for them to get outdoors, play with other dogs,” Feltner said.

Others like the hike and bike paths, fishing, and canoeing.  But, there’s talk of something more – something to make White Rock Lake better.

Paula Blackmon, Mayor Mike Rawlings Chief of Staff, says, “Have a cup of coffee after a morning run, a sweet roll. If you take your dog for a walk. If you sit and have a glass of wine.”

Mark Feltner likes that idea. “Like a little kiosk to sell ice cream and soft  drinks over in the parking lot would be great,” he said.

“Anything. Even if they could put up a little stand and have nice sandwiches, healthy kinds of foods,” said Nicole Brookman.

A canoe company at the lake has been enjoying a successful run since it opened in August of 2010.

Amy Ebert of the White Rock Paddle Company hauls the canoes in a trailer to the park every day.  “We’ve gotten great feedback. A lot of turnout and all sorts of people come out to see us,” she said.

What would she like to see at the lake?

“A restaurant would be cool. I don’t know. There’s so many possibilities with it. But it’s also so awesome the way it is. Kind of quaint,” she said.

“We don’t want the buildings. We don’t want a lot of traffic I guess you could say,” Nicole Brookman said.

“Traffic. Trash. Noise. Lights. Safety. There’s a lot of things you have to address,” said Paula Blackmon.

Paula Blackmon, the Mayor’s Chief of Staff says for now, it’s just talk.   “It’s just What If? It’s conversation,” she said.

It’s also the way great ideas for urban areas begin.

“Somebody said, ‘What if we did this or what if we did that,’ and we’ve got now a great bridge opening, Margaret Hunt Hill. We’ve got the Deck Park. We have the Arts District.”

No plans have been drawn. No committees have been formed.  Ideas about what to do with White Rock Lake, if anything at all, are only in the discussion phase.

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One Comment

  1. JPizzal says:

    Would be nice to be able to swim in it again…

  2. steve says:

    they have an organization already, it’s called for the love of the lake. let them handle it

  3. vince42 says:

    When I was a kid in the fifties, there was a beach at White Rock Lake, with sand, place to swim, and concession stands. I suggest re-introducing this to today’s White Rock visitors – they would love it for sure!

  4. Jeri says:

    Let people drive all the way around the lake again.

    1. Stevo says:

      Horrible idea. They should disallow cars altogether. As a cyclist, it gets really dangerous on weekends already, with people jogging and walking in the middle of the road with no clue that other people would like to get around. Adding cars to the mix would just make it a nightmare like the rest of Dallas.

  5. Jay Durkin says:

    A great place for scheduled food trucks.

  6. Mike Gawronski says:

    White Rock Lake Park is improving year after year with grass roots community effort. There is a tremendous amount of money spent to build the downtown overpass park (Kyle Warren Park) while parks around the city go neglected. Why doesn’t the city get corporate sponsors to reopen pools so kids can learn to swim? Imagine if there were a large ‘bottled water company’ label painted in the bottom of a city pool and have them pick up the tab. Or basketball backboards and nets sponsored by local pro sports teams. Why does Mark Cuban have to pay for the St Patricks parade? The city of Dallas is no fun. Its always top down, sterile, and DOA rather than grass roots, colorful, and participatory with the people of Dallas. Major corporations see this underfunded blandness and transplant to other cities.

  7. Sam says:

    PPPPLease please a seperate bike path from the walking path!!!! I feel like my life is in danger taking a walk. I can’t let my toddler walk beside me with bikes zoooming by at incredible speeds. Hearing “Leeeft on your llllleeeeft!!!!” while walking is so annoying.

    1. chris says:

      I agree- child safety

    2. steve says:

      this is a real no-s–ter it’s dangerous with all the wanabee armstrongs out there

    3. Stevo says:

      It is a bike path already. They even painted a centerline stripe on it. How bout a separate walking path ? How about walking in the grass if it bothers you so much?

    4. VelociPete says:

      Would you rather that we cyclists “didn’t” announce our presence? Funny how more people thank me for making my presence known when I “zoom by”. If you are paying attention, you would notice the signs throughout the park that instruct cyclists to “announce passing on the left”. You would also notice the signs that advise trail users to be alert and keep the volume down on headphones so that you can hear when someone is coming. Why don’t YOU and your toddler use the walking path or go to one of the many playgrounds that are scattered throughout the 1000+ acre park instead?

      And Steve, not everyone who rides a bike at White Rock Lake is a wannabe Armstrong. Those of you who whinge about the bikes at White Rock– where, exactly, do you suggest that we ride? Walkers and joggers whinge about bikes in the park; motorists whinge about bikes on the road. Dallas doesn’t exactly have an extensive bike lane system, sidewalks are haphazard at best and are in general not safe for cyclists anyway b/c of peds and random hazards like poles, no curb ramps meaning that we have to dismount/remount, and uneven concrete… and the trails that do exist are often difficult or impossible to access without going through a park or onto the roads– and they don’t seem to really “go” anywhere except to another park, or in the case of the Santa Fe Trail, they just dead end behind a “warehouse” or some nonsense. In short, Dallas in general is very bike-unfriendly (with a few notable exceptions).

      I’m a vehicular cyclist and I share the roads with motorists. That doesn’t prevent someone on a cellphone from running me down, or someone else from blowing a light and barreling into me. It doesn’t stop someone who dislikes bicycles in general from doing something stupid like throwing trash at us, or opening a car door into us either while exiting a parked car or even while going up the road (yes, I’ve been knocked off my bike by someone who opened their door into me as they passed by at 40 mph). You don’t hear me– or other VC types– calling for cars to be banned from the roads. It’s up to me as a cyclist and road user to pay attention, the same as if I am driving a car. Peds need to do the same.

  8. Celeste says:

    Leave the lake alone! No cars, for sure! They only add to pollution and congestion. The lake should be a quiet and contemplative place for biking, walking, running, skating, and boating. Keep it healthy, serene, and beautiful!

  9. CB says:

    As Sam has mentioned, a separate bike path is a good idea. I both walk and cycle around the lake, but I use the roadways as much as possible when on a bike. There are some sections of the trail are too narrow for walkers and cyclists to coexist safely. The narrow sections put both the cyclists and walkers/joggers at risk. Both groups (walkers and cyclists) have headphones on and generally are not paying attention to the other. I would hate for an incident to occur similar to the one that happened on Katy Trail. Wider trails need to be implemented very soon, since WRL is growing in popularity. If the City can raise the funds for wider trails from the new food trucks, then why not start tomorrow??

  10. Toldjaso says:

    Get the bikers OFF the walking trails!! Many, not all, are arrogant spoiled brats that will run you over in a heartbeat!! Some even yell profanities at pedestrians, you can sense the entitlement mentality they ooze!!

    1. Stevo says:

      Have you ridden a bike before?? If you did you would know how annoying it is to come to a complete stop because of somebody walking their dog or blocking the middle of the trail with their headphones on. Hence the reason most fast cyclists stick to the road option if that is available. If they were arrogant towards you its probably because you showed no respect by hogging the lane. Stereotype much??

  11. votejoel says:

    If you have a glass of wine at WRL, the police will bust you. And the city ran out the vendor that used to be in the paddleboat area. The city of Dallas is clueless!

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