The Dallas Arts District is located in the northeast corner of downtown Dallas. This district is considered to be the largest contiguous urban arts district in the United States. It spans over 68 acres and 19 adjacent blocks. Pritzker award-winning architects designed most of the buildings in this iconic neighborhood. When you go to the Dallas Arts District, you will see that it aims to unify culture and commerce by integrated and exemplary residential, artistic, educational, cultural, recreational, as well as economic life. The place was even awarded a maximum 3-star rating by the respected Le Guide Vert – Michelin Green Guide. The Dallas Arts District has a programmatic highlight called the Signature Block Party Series. These are two events that are free to the public, and it features local, state, as well as national artists’ works, which draw about 50,000 visitors every year. In this article, we are going to know more about the enchanting Dallas Arts District.
In the 1970s, the city of Dallas decided to hire a series of consultants to determine how the city could retain its arts and cultural institutions. And in 1978, the consultants suggested that Dallas should gather all of its most of the major arts institutions from all over Dallas and convene them all together. After that, the consultants said that the northeast end of downtown is the best location for this new district. Not long after that, a lively mix of cultural and commercial destinations started popping up. This effortlessly bought a blend of contemporary and historic architecture in the area.
The Dallas Museum of Art was opened in 1984, and it is the first institution built in the newly made district. During the next twenty years, the development of the Arts District continued. They opened the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center in 1989, and Pritzker Prize-winning architect I.M. Pei designed its building. In 1998, the Crow Collection of Asian Art, formerly located at the Trammell Crow Center, was transferred to the district; In 2003, the Nasher Sculpture Center was designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Renzo Piano opened. The relocation of the art institutions finished in 2009, and the district celebrated it with the opening of the AT&T Performing Arts Center. However, it didn’t stop there because the Moody Performance Hall, formerly known as the Dallas City Performance Hall, the Klyde Warren Park, as well as The Perot Museum of Nature and Science, all opened at the district by 2012. The Dallas Arts District continues to be a hive for artistic and educational life by adding more establishments, hosting free shows, and seminars that feature different cultures and arts. All of these encourage each visitor to come and explore their creative side.
How the Dallas Arts District Helps the Art Scene and Its Neighborhood
The Dallas Arts District has about 4.1 million visitors annually, and 500,000 of whom are students. The Dallas Arts District gives operational and marketing support to the city and the art scene by collaborating with neighbors to produce, host, and promote free public programming such as the Arts District Signature Block Parties, which attracts about 50,000 audiences every year. Aside from that, since 1990, they also award over 450 microgrants from small to mid-size Dallas arts organizations. This helped to bring more visitors to the neighborhood;
The district also developed a plan called the CONNECT Plan. This is an infrastructure master plan which promotes connectivity, safety, and accessibility in a multimodal neighborhood without losing it with strong urban design. Aside from that, they also help improve the economy of Dallas’s cultural sector in five years.
Being a popular tourist destination means that the district has to work hard to promote itself and the city. That is why they created marketing print collateral through printing a magazine and making sure it reaches about 50,000 people. They also maintain a website and several social media sites to be able to over 325,000+ users every year. This platform also allowed the district to showcase what it got to hundreds of people worldwide. They also do outreach programs to community businesses, non-profit organizations, as well as neighborhoods throughout Dallas every year. Lastly, the district also provides tours to global leaders and international visitors to learn more about the arts and culture in Dallas.