By BJ Austin
Dallas has a new plan to develop the old Reunion Arena site. City council members were briefed yesterday on a proposed land swap to start the ball rolling again on a public/private partnership that was born 40 years ago. It resulted in creation of Reunion Arena, the Hyatt Regency and renovation of Union Station.
The city would trade the eight acre arena site and adjacent parking lot to Hunt-Woodbine, the owner/developer of the Hyatt for a six acre parking lot at the foot of the Dallas Convention Center. Hunt-Woodbine would pay the city $3.5 million cash for the additional two acres in the swap.
John Crawford, with Downtown Dallas Inc., says the deal sounds simple enough, but a lot of work’s gone into it.
“This is a very complicated deal and I applaud the work that the staff has done and hopefully what the council will agree to do in terms of connecting these dots,” said Crawford. “It’s going to open up the whole western side of our city.”
Crawford envisions a large corporate campus for come big company, plus office, retail and some entertainment development. The full council is expected to vote on the deal next week.