Just in the past few months there have been big changes in East Lubbock. Several new economic developments are taking place and, now, John Hall's mission is to continue that growth and change the image of areas that for decades have experienced a shrinking business and residential base.
John is the Executive Director of the North and East Lubbock Community Development Project. His mission is to help the bubble expanding toward Southwest Lubbock to expand in a different direction. Recruited by city council for his success in renewing Dallas' south side, he's now faced with a daunting task, to reverse the trend of migration out of Lubbock's North and East. Hall says, "The main issues so far are the image and perception of both areas, the marketability and the decrease in population. What we can do to get people to move back into those areas."
Hall says the community's dedication in the renewal of North and East Lubbock is what drew him here. It's that dedication that makes him sure the tremendous task ahead is feasible. "It is the community in which they live. They have the vested interest and they remain in the community and they've awaited this change in direction and I really want to have them as part of the process."
Hall says the process will not happen overnight but he's hoping to see progress in increments. His first idea for change is to generate commercial and residential growth along MLK near Estacado High School. Hall explains, "There's Estacado High School. There's a multi-family complex, Windcrest I believe, that are tremendous assets for the area and I'd like to build on that. Plus, the area is ripe. There's a lot of vacant land that can be developed."
Hall says he thinks the issues facing North and East Lubbock stem from a lack of investment in the areas for decades. He's hoped to make up for lost ground starting with Thursday night's town meeting at the Civic Center auditorium. Hall asked everyone to come out, voice their concerns, their ideas, and possible solutions.