Across the many signs placed in the room during the Eastside Transportation Plan open house at the Handley Meadowbrook Community Center, residents have placed stickers and notes on items that are very important to them: safety, ease of use for different transportation modes, bringing a grocery store and more walkable retail. 

Those new amenities could soon come to Fort Worth’s eastside as the city works to implement comprehensive projects that tackle land use, transportation and road safety. 

Kelly Porter, assistant director of transportation and public works for the city of Fort Worth, said this is about moving things forward previously explored in past vision plans like Advancing East Lancaster

“It’s taking all those things that came up with some good vision and putting them to a level of detail and taking you through a process that we can then move forward with and actually get designed and constructed,” Porter said. 

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Options currently being explored for the eastside will make the area safe, clean and comfortable, the city said. That means increasing density in some places to encourage residents to work and play in the same area without displacing people. Options include walkable retail and landscape beautification while also looking at ways to circulate residents’ money locally. 

As for safety, that could be manifested as more speed bumps to slow incoming traffic; more stop signs, sidewalks and increased traffic enforcement. 

“Safety’s a big one. And just general quality of life for themselves,” Porter said. “One thing we’re trying to do is engage the kids because they’re gonna inherit a lot of these things. (We want to) make sure we get in that diversity back – not just the people that show up at meetings.”

Eastside resident Patrick Callahan has lived in the area since 1998. He said he’d like to see more grocery store options so he can access fresh produce. He also mentioned concerns about drag racing along East Lancaster Avenue. 

“We can hear it like it’s a street next door to us,” Callahan said. “It’s not only the nuisances and noise but obviously the safety — some people are in danger.”

Map courtesy of the city of Fort Worth

Goals envisioned for the area have changed since the pandemic, Porter said, which means it’s important that all groups involved in the redevelopment of the area — the city, Trinity Metro, the North Central Texas Council of Governments and the Texas Department of Transportation – need to be on the same page. 

“By doing this altogether, it keeps us on the same page, keeps the development process where the project development process and design process more efficient, and hopefully saves us time and maybe even money on the end,” he said. 

The city is currently collecting feedback from residents about the plan to help determine recommendations. The current survey is open until June 30, 2023. 

“This is where we can come together and figure out what happens. There’ve been a lot of things in the past that have been said about what’s going to happen. This is the process we have to go through to get to the point where we’re trying to figure out what it’s going to be,” Porter said. “This is going to be hopefully us buying into a vision – a shared vision – but it’s going to be data-driven.”

Sandra Sadek is a Report for America corps member, covering growth for the Fort Worth Report. You can contact her at or on Twitter at @ssadek19

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Sandra Sadek is the growth reporter for the Fort Worth Report and a Report for America corps member. She writes about Fort Worth's affordable housing crisis, infrastructure and development. Originally...