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January 4, 2021


Dear District 8 Neighbor,

 I hope that you enjoyed the holiday season, and I offer my best wishes to you and yours. With 2020 behind us, we all pray that 2021 will be a better year as we gradually pull out of the COVID-19 pandemic. Much of my time has been spent making sure the City of Dallas responds to the needs of citizens, provisioning personal protective equipment, organizing food distribution with North Texas Food Bank and Services of Hope, and ensuring adequate testing. The challenge is not over, but together we will come out of this stronger. Even with the pandemic, we have so much to be excited about for the present and future of District 8. Below are highlights of advances we have made over the last term.

 BOOSTING ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT & REIMAGINING REDBIRD: District 8 continues to become a powerful business and logistics hub. FedEx has begun operations at the Cedardale Distribution Center, adding up to 1200 jobs. The KeHE food distribution center is now planned and will add 575 jobs. Amazon is phasing in operations at the Southlink Logistics Center. Trammell Crow is adding the TCC Altamoore Business Park. Kroger and its partner Ocado plan a massive grocery delivery center at the Inland Port that will add at least 410 jobs combined. Preferred Freezer's operations have added 60 jobs. Progress on Reimagine RedBird Mall is also going well, adding new retail and residential, as well as medical services from Parkland RedBird Health Center and UT Southwestern Medical Center. African-American-owned Chime Solutions is a strong presence at RedBird, creating 1000 new customer service jobs. Thus far, the city's Small Business Continuity Fund has provided grants and loans to 17 small businesses. Neighborhood Empowerment Zone Number 10 in the district contains more than 500 acres targeted for small economic development projects. The development anchored by UNT Dallas continues to progress.

 REMOVING SHINGLE MOUNTAIN: Over the last year, I have been a diligent watchdog to make sure "shingle mountain" is removed. I supported the city in reaching an agreement with the landowner to begin removal and clean-up that should conclude in the spring of 2021. The plan includes ongoing monitoring of the site for public health safety, and the possibility of the city purchasing and redeveloping the land.

 IMPROVING STREETS: More than 290 streets have been repaired or resurfaced since 2019, and more needed repairs are scheduled for 2021. Miles of sidewalks have been added to make our district more walkable. Street lights for Simpson Stuart Road are being added from Bonnie View Road all the way to Lancaster Road.

 IMPROVING PARKS AND SINGING HILLS RECREATION CENTER: I am proud that District 8 is now served by enhanced park facilities, including the Runyon Creek Trail. I worked with the community on tree plantings and community impact events to beautify parks all over the district, including J.J. Lemon Park, Miller Family Park, College Park, Tommie Allen Park and Danieldale Park. The new Singing Hills Recreation Center is a jewel of our district.

 SUPPORTING FIRE & POLICE: The district will soon be served by two new Fire Stations that launch in 2021. We've also purchased second sets of gear for firefighters to help protect them from toxins encountered fighting fires. I successfully fought to keep dedicated neighborhood police officers in District 8 who maintain deep ties and communications with the community.

 CLEANING UP NEIGHBORHOODS & HANDLING STRAY ANIMALS: I helped launch multiple community cleanup projects and pushed for stronger code enforcement to remove junk motor vehicles and trash, and to ensure adequate yard maintenance. I pushed for stronger animal controls, and dog biting incidents are down almost 10 percent over the last year. The city is euthanizing far fewer animals, and we are getting more dogs back to owners safely.

 PROVIDING HOUSING AND FINANCIAL HELP: Exciting new housing projects are in process. The Ridge at Lancaster is a new mixed-income, mixed-use development that will feature enhanced amenities, walkability, retail, and access to transit. The Five Mile development will add 118 new single family homes, with nearly half to be sold as affordable housing. Cameron Homes is adding a new subdivision in the district in the Kleberg-Riley area. The city is also helping homeowners secure home improvement and preservation loans, and the mortgage and rental assistance plan has helped people deal with the economic impact of the pandemic.

 As you can see, despite the obstacles the pandemic presents, we have moved forward on all fronts to make District 8 stronger. And I know we can achieve even more progress. As I seek a new term, my focus continues to be on strong neighborhoods, enhanced facilities and amenities, better shopping options, more connected transportation, increased infrastructure, and outstanding economic growth and job opportunities for our citizens. I pledge to keep working hard for you, and I hope to have your support in the May 1, 2021, municipal election.



Councilman Tennell Atkins



VOTE EARLY: April 19-27, 2021       

ELECTION DAY: Saturday, May 1, 2021


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