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Dallas Breaks Ground On Deck Park

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By BJ Austin, KERA News

http://stream.publicbroadcasting.net/production/mp3/kera/local-kera-860478.mp3

Dallas, TX –

Construction of the Woodall Rodgers "Deck Park" in downtown Dallas will start late next month. KERA's BJ Austin attended groundbreaking ceremonies.

There was no ribbon to cut at the groundbreaking inside a new condo building that overlooks the future park. Instead, dignitaries placed puzzle pieces on a huge board to create a picture of the five-acre, 120 million dollar project. The park will be built OVER the Woodall Rodgers Freeway between St. Paul and Pearl Streets.

It will feature a "signature" water sculpture, green space, jogging trails, a dog park, performance pavilions and a restaurant. Dallas City Councilmember Angela Hunt told the crowd the park will provide a major upgrade to downtown life.

Hunt: It's going to be an incredible place for people to gather; for people to seek green space in a sea of what can be mile and mile of concrete. It's going to be an incredible place for the future of Dallas.

Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert says it's also going to be an important connector that links downtown to Uptown, and the Arts District to Victory.

The project has received 75 million dollars in city, state, federal and private funds. But that's not quite enough. The Woodall Rodgers Park Foundation has set a goal of raising 30 million MORE in private funds.

Texas Department of Transportation officials say they'll schedule construction at off-peak hours to minimize.

Email BJ Austin