Team Better Block is partnering with OptionsRE to develop strategies to revive a struggling shopping strip in South Oak Cliff. Developed in the early 1970’s, Square 67 follows a standard suburban strip mall form with a large anchor tied to a series of smaller business storefronts. Most recently, the anchor “Sack N Save”, closed and smaller tenants in the area have begun experiencing a lack of traffic. This problem is seen throughout the nation with vacant strip centers lining suburban arterial streets. Neighborhood homes surrounding these areas often begin seeing declines in sales and a negative feedback loop occurs which ripples throughout the community.
Team Better Block was asked to evaluate the strengths of the area and find away to turn this strip into an active neighborhood place. Fortunately, the project is bounded by amazing amenities like Dallas Executive Airport, Boulder Park, Bahama Beach, and the Oak Cliff Country Club. Connectivity is lacking in the area, with a focus predominately on auto-only traffic. Beyond this, the area struggles with stakeholders attempting rebranding efforts in an attempt to change assumed negative perceptions associated with its historical “Redbird”. AT TBB, we feel passionately that a community should not run from its name, but in fact, should uphold it and begin promoting the culture and values of the community surrounding the area. Our focus is to return to the “Public Square” concept, which the strips name already alludes to. A great public square is filled with markets, outdoor seating, landscaping, free and paid-for activities, and gather spaces that promote the identity of the area.