Deck Park Construction to Get Worse Before It Gets Better

The road to the completion of the deck park over Woodall Rogers Freeway has been bumpy for drivers, but there is a glimmer of hope.

Road closures continue this weekend, but the project is on schedule. Half of the crossbeams that will serve as the base of the park will be laid down by the end of the weekend.

But various lanes and ramps on Woodall Rogers, U.S. 75, Interstate 35 and Interstate 45 will be closed this weekend so workers can get to that point.

However, residents say they are excited about the park, despite the traffic headaches.

"This is going to be our version of Central Park," said Lauren Upchurch, a downtown resident.

The park is intended to better connect downtown and Uptown and will include a performance pavilion, restaurants, walking trails, playgrounds and a dog park.

All the amenities are also expected to attract more business. According to the Kristin Gray, director of development for the Woodall Rogers Park Foundation, more than $1 billion in development is expected surrounding the park.

At this point, the area looks like nothing more than a construction zone, but Gray said residents should begin to see trees and greenery as soon as this summer.

The publicly and privately funded project will cost $110 million.

All of the public funds have been accounted for. More than $84 million has been raised so far, but Gray said the Woodall Rogers Park Foundation will announce next week an amount that a generous Dallas donor donated to the project.

The park is scheduled to open in September 2012.

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