More than 44,000 people visited Klyde Warren Park over the weekend. The new green space spans Woodall Rodgers Freeway, linking downtown Dallas to Uptown. We took in the sights and sounds:
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The park’s opening weekend featured a battle for the senses. A cloudless blue sky and soft green grass filled the landscape. More than a dozen sizzling food trucks lined the park’s exterior. The air was filled with jazz, Latin beats and rock-tinged classical.
And everywhere you looked, there were people.
“I just think it’s really incredible that we’re sitting on top of a freeway right now,” Briana Morrison said as she knitted a scarf in the shade. “There’s cars zooming below us, and here we are with big, beautiful trees and grass and runnin’ around.”
Most of that runnin’ around took place in the Children’s Park. The rest was handled by an army of dogs both large and small.
There were few reports of traffic problems. If there were complaints, they centered on the tricky navigation around the blocked off streets near the park. Many visitors took DART light rail or the McKinney Avenue Trolley.
Making new connections was one of the weekend’s themes.
“I think there’s no question it connects two pretty disparate neighborhoods of downtown and Uptown,” said Matt Enzler, who was waiting outside a taco truck with his wife, Dara. “Especially with what’s happened with the Arts District over the last really 20 years, but more really the last five years, it’s such a great area and it’s not connected to anywhere where people live in Uptown. So having this park here really helps.”
If you didn’t make it this weekend, the park has regular programs planned for this week and beyond. Lunchtime concerts, Zumba, ping pong tournaments and more are planned going forward. But the most welcome element the park provides might be the chance to do nothing at all.
“This is a really a time for the mind, as well as the body, to take a little, mini-vacation,” said Nicole Payseur, a yoga instructor who taught a class in the park on Saturday. “That’s what this park is – a little mini-vacation. … Just the trees and the grass, it makes people breathe.”