DALLAS DART's Green Line was supposed to be the driver for development in South Dallas, but after more than four years, promises of progress never followed.

'Nobody wants to build anything out here,' said Mrs. Willie Mae Coleman, Bertrand Neighborhood Association President.

Just south of Fair Park, at the corner of Hatcher Street and Scyene Road, dirt is moving for the first time in decades.

It's something Mrs. Coleman thought she'd never see.

'Honey, I tell you,' she said. 'I'm just so happy. That's so nice. I can just sit right here and look. I can see it when they build it.'

Frazier Revitalization Inc. is building a new clinic for Parkland Hospital. It's a single-story, 44,000-square feet building to replace the aging one on Live Oak Street in East Dallas.

The clinic will have acute and primary care and chronic disease management, along with OBGYN services, said Sharon Phillips, Parkland's executive vice president and chief administrative officer of Population Health.

Besides the aging infrastructure in East Dallas, Parkland said it's seeing more of its patients come from South Dallas, she added.

The $19 million deal is where an old motel and liquor store once stood.

'For this neighborhood this is a huge deal,' said Dorothy Hopkins, president and CEO of Frazier Revitalization Inc. 'This is probably the biggest development that has gone on here in I don't know how many years.'

Banks are the biggest hurdle in South Dallas. Few are willing to lend money even for projects as big as this one and that just further exacerbates the dilemma facing this neighborhood.

Hopkins hopes new development spurs new development.

'I think the people who work here are going to demand a place to eat,' she added. 'I think they're going to demand a place to shop. I think that this area right here will be a catalyst for further development.'

Mrs. Coleman thinks so, too.

'I'm just praying I keep living,' she said with a laugh.

Currently, Parkland's Live Oak location sees 55,000 patients a year. The hospital projects the new larger facility on Hatcher St. will see 70,000 patients annually.

Parkland will lease the building from Frazier Revitalization for 25-years but has an opportunity to purchase it after seven, Phillips explained.


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