Arlington has branded itself “The American Dream City.”
The motto was adopted last year, but a new city leader is keeping the dream alive.
For Mayor Jeff Williams, who took the helm of the rapidly expanding city in May, that dream requires a lot of shovels, dirt and asphalt.
Indeed, between all the commercial development underway and an aggressive road repair program, Arlington is very much under construction.
This month, developers will break ground on a mixed-use complex in the city’s downtown. High-end apartments, retail businesses, restaurants and a gym are expected to occupy the 101 Center — its tentative name.
An 80,000 square-foot library, to replace one recently razed, is scheduled for a February groundbreaking and an October 2017 completion.
But if Arlingtonians are expected to drive someplace new, they will need reliable roads.
Perhaps that’s why during his State of the City address at a Chamber of Commerce luncheon this week, Williams emphasized improving city streets, which includes filling 10,000 potholes this year.
And thanks to a smartphone app the city is developing, residents will soon be able to send the city not just a note about a needed road repair, but a photo to go along with it.
Maintenance is only part of Arlington’s effort to improve infrastructure. A citywide surge of construction projects is under way.
According the city’s website, by the end of 2016 Arlington will have $83.4 million worth of capital street improvements progress.
Just this week, Williams joined other regional leaders in breaking ground on the $330 million Texas 360 South project, a joint venture of TxDOT, NTTA, the North Central Texas Council of Governments and several cities and counties.
The construction of a new four-lane toll road should help ease congestion in and around Arlington, Grand Prairie and Mansfield.
Road reconstruction spurs new development. The tollway is expected to attract even more business.
Arlington should expect to be under construction for a while — and building dreams in the process.