Alcohol-related Business on South Lamar Street has Sharon Grigsby stirred up

In the year and a half that I’ve known Sharon Grigsby I’ve learned that when she gets behind an issue there’s no stopping her.  Fortunately for us her issue is Southern Dallas.

On the Dallas Morning News Opinion Blog, Sharon is raising a red flag on a vote at the Dallas City Council on Thursday to approve a special use permit for an alcohol-related business on South Lamar Street.  She’s also posted an article written by Rev. Gerald Britt that takes up the same issue.  First, part of Sharon’s post:

  • I want to get word out ASAP regarding an issue coming before the City Council tomorrow. Gerald Britt is writing for our Viewpoints page about a scheduled vote to approve a special use permit for yet another alcohol-related business on South Lamar Street, where a community group has been working successfully for the good of this area.

    I believe this is similar, if not the exact issue, to a development noted in this very good post by Michael Davis on Dallas Progress late last year. If you look at the second map on his post, you’ll find a “proposed night club” in the midst of all the existing alcohol-related businesses already in operation.

Then she posts part of Rev. Britt’s ( article on the site.  Here are some of his thoughts.

  • Homeowners, community leaders and clergy in South Dallas are working with technical advisers, an urban planner and city staff to develop a model for revitalizing the South Lamar Street corridor. The goal is a big one: To dramatically reverse the persistent economic decline and social distress in this neighborhood.
  • The plan commission’s recommendation is incompatible with the community’s desire to rid itself of the pervasive presence of nightclubs, liquor stores and scrap metal yards. For too long, zoning has allowed industrial and commercial sites to crowd churches and homes in this area. Too many of the businesses breed heavy traffic — and worse. Crime, urban nuisances, near hopelessness and despair pockmark the neighborhood.
  • South Lamar Street cuts along the western edge of South Dallas proper. As it runs under Interstate 45, the street is home to about 215 acres of metal recycling, transportation and liquor businesses mixed with abandoned, substandard structures and residences.
  • Homeowners, community and church leaders are not saying that South Dallas has to be “dry,” they are saying they don’t want a future that has them drowning in alcohol. They deserve the City Council’s support.

It’s time for the Dallas City Council to step up and show that their talk of a better Southern Dallas is more than just talk.  There’s no need for another special use permit in South Dallas, there are plenty.  I’m not saying shut down all the liquor stores, but there are more than enough and I agree with the assertion of a moratorium on liquor licenses in South Dallas.

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