Better Block Foundation kicked off their latest project in Lake Highlands June 22 at the Forest-Audelia Youth Boxing Gym.
The project, a temporary park demonstration, will take place in the parking lot of the Forest Audelia Village, 9537 Forest Lane, Dallas. What the park looks like is up to what the community decides, project manager Kristin Leiber shared.
A short survey is available to community members to give their ideas for the demonstration through July 22 at tinyurl.com/ForestAudelia. This feedback will shape not only what the demonstration looks like, but will also fuel plans for a long-term public park in the same space.
The demonstration will be built in October of this year, and will stay up for a month. Ideas for and responses to the demonstration will be passed along to city representatives to use for the future park space.
The work at the Forest Audelia Village is part of an ongoing effort to create safe and enjoyable spaces in Lake Highlands. An earlier piece of the puzzle was opening the Forest-Audelia Youth Boxing Gym, where community members gathered to watch Better Block present.
“It started with just getting a bus stop moved,” Councilman Adam McGough said. “Step by step, it’s getting better. We finally got the boxing gym open. We have worked to get security in this area of ramped up. It’s a key piece to have midboss, the new ownership and coming into the apartments in and around this area. It has been a huge and incredible work.”
This is also a goal of Better Block’s, a foundation that has done work to help brainstorm and execute temporary builds across Dallas, including recent work to create a temporary food park in the Forest District of South Dallas.
McGough shared that in some initial conversations with a bunch of neighborhood kids, they were asked what they might want in their community.
“I was saying, ‘If you could dream, what you wanted in your community, what would it be? Like really open your mind and think of what you could want more than anything else in your community, what would it be?'” McGough said. “And we went around the room, we had a discussion and the outcome was could we just hit a really nice swing set. And I thought, my goodness, right? That’s what we’re dealing with.”
“…We’re driving a stake in the ground. And we’re gonna do each and everything we can do to improve this area.”