Dallas CityDesign has announced the results of the Connected City Design Challenge. Stoss + SHoP’s proposal, Hyper Density Hyper Landscape, has been uniquely recognised as the preferred proposal for new Dallas city design – among the Professional Stream that included finalists Ricardo Bofill and OMA+AMO. Stoss, design and planning studio, + SHoP Architect’s proposal connects the city and its river through an alternating pattern of “grid-green” development. The proposal identifies 176 acres to be developed as three distinct neighbourhoods, deployed across 489 acres in a pattern of alternating bands of lush landscape and high-density urban development. Each of the three new neighbourhoods offers a unique identity.
In the north, DeCCo (Design Crosses Commerce) is a -vibrant mixed-use neighbourhood that connects downtown with the emerging design district. Residential development is paired with commercial and light industry, drawing the city’s emerging technology and arts sectors. Along the Houston and Jefferson viaducts, The Viaduct extends the central business district towards the river and links Union Square to a new high-speed rail station, a signature office tower, a commercial retail centre, a central plaza, a new technology campus, Reunion Tower, and the convention centre. Riverfront South bridges the rail corridor to connect Dallas’s South Side neighborhood to the Trinity, creating a southern anchor for Riverfront Boulevard with -attractive housing, water and music gardens, and two signature institutions.
The Connected City jury has recognised Hyper Landscape as an innovative approach to activating public land as entrepreneurial urban forests and farms. The proposal extends the natural systems of the Trinity River towards Dallas’s downtown, providing forests for people. Ecologically diverse and programmatically rich, these playful, active forests weave between the highways and interchanges with a new walk that connects Dealey Plaza with the waterfront, offering lush gardens, cafes, and trails along the way. The forests clean the air and water and provide a new habitat.
The heart of these new neighbourhoods and landscapes is a revived and revitalised Old River, transformed from flood -basins into a chain of parks and water gardens that reconnect people with the river that has been so important to Dallas’s history. The proposal is organised around a productive water system that reimagines life along the Old River, improving its quality and creating new -urban amenities, including wetlands, gardens, and an urban beach. It re-works the water systems that move through the current sumps, holding more water in place and reducing overall volumes that enter the levee at the flood stage. Stormwater runoff serves as irrigation for the new urban forests.