The Katy Trail is a gem in the heart of Dallas, where individuals and families can bike, run, skate or simply go for a leisurely walk with friends or a dog. It’s clean, safe and open 24 hours per day, 365 days per year.
It’s developed, managed and maintained for the community by Friends of the Katy Trail, a non-profit organization and supported by community volunteers and donations.
Safety on the trail and the surrounding neighborhoods however could be in jeopardy. A bar developer has filed an application for a license to operate an outdoor bar/restaurant on the Katy Trail at the intersection of the Katy Trail and Fitzhugh. Like the Ice House further south on the Katy Trail, the bar will play music and serve alcohol outdoors until 2 AM.
So, why are we concerned that this bar may move crime to the Katy Trail and the surrounding neighborhoods?
Violent crime in the Uptown area has increased almost 65% over the past year, compared to only 5% in City of Dallas overall. On Fitzhugh Ave, crimes have tended to cluster around the late night bars located less than a block away from the proposed bar on the Katy Trail. This is consistent with what researchers have found nationally, where the density of alcohol establishments is a strong predictor of crime including assaults, robbery, burglary and even more violent crimes including rape and murder.
By moving the Fitzhugh Ave bar scene to the Katy Trail, we may not only increase the problems of crime, but drug use, litter and noise as well, creating needless dangers and problems on the Katy Trail and in the surrounding neighborhood. While members of the surrounding community do not oppose bars in the area, we believe that it is dangerous and unwise to put an outdoor bar on the Katy Trail, in the heart of the FitzKaty community.
Only one major hurdle stands in the way for the bar developer from doing business on the Katy Trail – the need for an alcohol permit from the TABC (Texas Alcohol and Beverage Commission). The TABC will be reviewing the case very soon to decide whether to grant the alcohol permit and we need your help.
If you want to help keep the Katy Trail and the surrounding neighborhoods safe and clean, please sign the online petition and then forward the link to 10 or more of your friends and neighbors and ask them to do the same.
Our loud support of this effort will send a clear message to the Texas alcohol granting authorities (TABC) that our community wants to keep the Katy Trail and our neighborhoods safe and clean and strongly opposes a late night outdoor bar on the Katy Trail.