Non Sequitur: A little Dallas History August 30, 2016Posted by Tantumblogo in Admin, awesomeness, Dallas Diocese, demographics, fun, history, non squitur, silliness, Society, technology.
This post is more for the locals. In the summer of 1991, my parents and I moved from central Plano, near US75, to what was then far west/northwest Plano. This was well before Dallas North Tollway had been expanded north of Keller Springs Rd. It was just a two lane blacktop.
There was our brand-new subdivision, and nothing else for miles. You could see the brand-new EDS headquarters about 3 miles north, but that was it. It was prairie and cows. There was a large ranch just to the east (still there, soon to become a large nature preserve). A lot of wildflowers. Our house was the fifth to be built in this new subdivision and the 2nd to be occupied. Literally across the street would be some black angus grazing. For a couple of years, it felt like country living.
It’s been almost completely built up around there for years, now. Which just goes to show how fast the Dallas area continues to grow.
For a little more historical evidence of that, some photos from DFWFreeways.com, showing the old and the new.
Back in the mid-50s, Dallas pretty much stopped at Northwest Highway. Even much of the land along Northwest Highway was quite country. Lovers Lane was still used as its name suggests, at least the eastern part was. The photo below shows the newly completed Central Expressway looking north from Walnut Hill towards Northwest Highway. There was a Ford Tractor dealership just out of frame to the lower left. As you can tell, this area was still completely undeveloped. Within 10 years, however, it would be almost completely built up, making room for hundreds of thousands of new residents:
US75/Central Expressway looking north at the Northwest Highway interchange. Nice traffic level!
Northwest Highway and US75/Central Expressway as it appeared 11 years ago, in 2005 (looking from the opposite direction as the first photo above, but covering the same stretch of road). 50 years makes quite a difference. That is the world’s first mall, Northpark, at right. It is still one of the most successful malls in the world:
Incomplete Central Expressway in tiny, sleepy Plano in 1955. The town population was about 2000 but was poised for explosive growth. By 1970 the population was 17,000, and 1980, 72,000.
Perhaps the most amazing comparo of all, Preston Road at Valley View, which would become LBJ freeway, in 1958. The more modern scene is shown below:
Man there was just whole bunch of nothin’ out there in 1959! Looks like Phillipsburg.
By 1970, however, Dallas had expanded to fill in virtually all of the northern territory up to LBJ freeway. Richardson was almost built out, and Plano was starting the growth that would make it the fastest growing city in the US in the 1970s, 80s, and 90s. It, too, in turn has become built out. And the slow process of decay begins.
Irving had enjoyed that explosive growth in the 50s and 60s. A little closer to home for me today, a then 2 lane SH183 at Britain Rd in Irving in 1954:
Lots of interesting stuff on this site. It’s one reason you haven’t had much from me today. It’s worth checking out.