A new neighborhood green space is slated for development in Lake Highlands as part of a new Dallas initiative to turn unused city-owned land into public green spaces.

The Dallas Greening Initiative, spearheaded by Mayor Eric Johnson, is meant to ensure all Dallas residents have walking access to a park within 10 minutes of their home. Johnson has repeatedly named parks as one of his top priorities as mayor, saying he intends to make sure Dallas has the best park system of any city in Texas.

The overview

The project, which is being called the Bushmills Project for now, is the first project selected for development through the new initiative, said Garrett Boone, who was appointed by Johnson to plan ways the city can increase access to parks and green spaces.

The city is partnering with Trust for Public Land, a national nonprofit dedicated to creating parks and protecting public land, to develop the project. Members of the organization and city officials held the first of at least three meetings to gather community input on the project Nov. 28.

“This is the first step in engaging you all, seeing what you want, addressing any concerns you have, and taking your ideas and seeing how we can really make this a community driven project,” said Scott Goldstein, who represents the Lake Highlands area on the Dallas Park and Recreation board, at the meeting.

The details

The project, located in north Lake Highlands at 10600 Black Walnut Drive, is in the early planning stages and does not have a concrete design or plan yet. Sofia Hernandez, a program manager for the Dallas Greening Initiative, said the site could be developed into a park with a playground, a space with a walking trail or other green space amenity, depending on feedback from residents.

Once completed, the green space is expected to serve 2,135 people who live within a 10-minute walk of the site, Hernandez said.

The timeline

Hernandez said at the meeting that the project is slated for a 2025 completion with at least two more community input meetings on the way.
  • Fall 2023: After studying various locations throughout the city, Trust for Public Land and city officials selected the land on Black Walnut Drive as the first project site for the new initiative.
  • Spring 2024: Trust for Public Land and city officials will host a second community meeting at the project site. They’re partnering with nonprofit organization Better Block Foundation to build a pop-up park at the project site, where this meeting will be held.
  • Summer 2024: A third community meeting will be held to unveil the project’s final design.
  • End of 2024: Construction on the project is expected to start.
  • 2025: Trust for Public Land and city officials will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony and grand opening event for the new green space.
Get involved

Those interested can fill out this online survey to share feedback about the project and its design. The survey will remain open until Jan. 2, 2024.

Residents can also sign up for the Dallas Greening Initiative email newsletter to stay up to date on upcoming meetings.