Equity and Inclusion Report
The following is the Executive Summary of the Harold Simmons Park Community Engagement: Equity and Inclusion Report. To read the full report, click here.
Trinity Park Conservancy is committed to authentic and inclusive community engagement to shape the equitable planning, design, construction, and operations of Harold Simmons Park. The Conservancy champions the transformation of the Trinity River to become the heart of Dallas. With the community, we are designing public spaces that unite us, enrich people’s lives through access to nature, create economic development opportunities, and inspire protection for the river ecosystems in this shared natural treasure.
Prepared for the Trinity River Corridor Local Government Corporation (LGC) and the general public, the Harold Simmons Community Engagement Report is comprised of a set of topics that engage a broad range of interest from the public including equity and inclusion, ecology, public health, jobs etc. The report provides an account of the Conservancy’s community engagement activities:
- An introduction to the Conservancy’s goals, context and methodological approach for community engagement.
- An overview of the Conservancy’s community engagement activities from January 2018 through February 2019.
- A summary of key priorities for the Park identified through community engagement.
- The Conservancy’s next steps to continue successful community engagement through 2019 and beyond.
The Conservancy’s inclusive engagement process is foundational to the vision for Harold Simmons Park. For generations the Trinity River has divided Dallas; the Park will become an inclusive and welcoming gathering space that can begin to overcome historical barriers. This initial Park investment can unlock citywide recreational, social, cultural, and economic impacts. Inclusive dialogue with neighboring communities and all Dallas residents is essential to build a shared vision for a public space that brings us together and delivers equitable benefits.
“I want the Park to connect people – there is so much diversity in our city, but few natural environments that facilitate meaningful connections between different groups.” – Community Workshop Attendee
The Conservancy amplifies community voices and builds capacity for partnered implementation through four complementary engagement strategies:
- Cultivating relationships with Park stakeholders, especially communities surrounding the Park.
- Major events to elevate, inform, and solicit citywide input on Harold Simmons Park.
- Collaboration with Park stakeholders to leverage community expertise for Park planning and support complementary community efforts.
- Park programming to build stewardship and enjoyment of the Park today.
During 2018 and early 2019, community engagement activities revealed several key priorities for Harold Simmons Park:
- Design that supports a range of uses or “park duality,” connecting people to natural landscapes with local flora, fauna, and wildlife; while also offering the amenities of an urban park.
- A safe experience for all park users in order to ensure the community’s enjoyment of the entire Park landscape.
- Connectivity within the Park and to surrounding neighborhoods to overcome barriers to Park access and unite our city.
- Equitable community development that supports existing neighborhoods and residents.
The Conservancy will continue engagement activities through 2019, while deepening interaction and collaboration with Park users and stakeholders.
- We will continue all four community engagement strategies launched in 2018 throughout 2019: cultivating relationships, major events, community collaboration, and Park programming.
- We will expand stakeholder collaboration, bringing insight from community leaders to improve the rigor and outcomes of Park and community planning.
- We will continue to provide opportunities to enjoy the Park today with enhanced Park programming in 2019 and 2020.
The Conservancy looks forward to continued community engagement as part of its civic mission and is committed to sharing community engagement progress with the LGC and residents of Dallas through periodic updates to this report.