Downtown Arlington Stands at a Crossroad

Downtown Arlington has exploded onto the scene over the last few years....and it wasn’t an accident. For decades, people like Gene Patrick, Jerry Jordan, Tom Cravens, and Lana Wolff (and a slew of others) worked to pump life back into the heart of the Arlington community. They thoughtfully developed planning documents to guide their way; imagining the wonderful possibilities and opportunities to come. Many of these plans required partnerships and a new way of thinking about the historical core of our community. Some imagined an events venue that would draw UT Arlington closer to downtown...today we call that the College Park Center. Others called for supporting and expanding our cultural arts...and today we have the Levitt Pavilion, which draws over 130,000 people to downtown annually. The list of the accomplishments we’ve experienced that started as an idea and a dream goes on and on.

We are now presented with a great opportunity to realize another goal outlined by our downtown pioneers; the dream that one day Downtown Arlington would be a place for pedestrians, and that Abram Street would be become the backbone of our revitalization. They stressed the importance of creating a more business and pedestrian friendly environment that would leverage the connections between the University and the Entertainment District. To realize this dream, the champions of downtown took steps to move FM 157 from Abram to Division Street.  They strategically located the Levitt Pavilion on Abram Street just across from City Hall, and they even worked to incorporate the redesign and rebuild of Abram Street into the 2008 bond election.  

So now, the time has come to carry out their plan, and help realize the dreams of those dedicated visionaries.  And, as such, the Downtown Arlington Management Corporation is launching a campaign, entitled “myAbram,” to help lead the conversation.  Over the coming weeks, we’ll share more about our historical downtown plans, the recently adopted DAMC Strategic Action Plan, and we’ll discuss the benefits a more pedestrian oriented downtown can have on health and safety, developing a sense of place, and improving the downtown economy.  

But don’t just take our word for it. We’ve invited others to share their thoughts on myAbram as well, including Linda and Dan Dipert, Randy Ford, Valerie Landry, Varun Mallipaddi, and Terry Bertrand. Additionally, we’ve asked a handful of others write guest blogs for the website sharing their expertise and passion for a reimagined Abram Street.  And, we’d like to invite you to join the conversation as well. Through the power of social media, you can keep up with the dialogue by searching #myAbram on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  You’ll also want to check out the latest news section on our website at downtownarlington.org. Finally, we'd like to encourage you to attend an upcoming public meeting scheduled for Tuesday, May 20th from 6 to 8pm. It will be hosted by the City of Arlington's Department of Public Works and Transportation at the Arlington Convention Center.

Downtown Arlington stands at a crossroad, and the direction we head depends on the redesign and enhancement of Abram Street.  Downtown leaders have envisioned the future of downtown to be a vibrant destination for residents, families, students, artists, visitors, and entrepreneurs.  To realize that vision, and continue our exciting momentum, we must take advantage of this opportunity.  We need your help to make this dream a reality!  Join the conversation and help us create a more vibrant Downtown Arlington.

AMC-207-EditTony Rutigliano

President and CEO

Downtown Arlington Management Corporation