I recently took photos of two buildings which sit across from each other along Cedar Springs Road (at Sale Street) in Dallas. The Gallery building was recently completed, while I assume the other dates from the 1990s. They serve as an illustration as to how the attitude toward urban environments in Dallas and elsewhere has improved.
The earlier building presents a large blank wall to the main drag, Cedar Springs Road and all but a small portion of Sale Street. The message seems to be that it’s dangerous out there and you’ll want to stay in your apartment. I assume they thought something of the location and the access it provides, however or it wouldn’t have been built where it is.
The recently-completed building has large plate-glass windows facing the corner, and apartments along Cedar Springs that are accessible from the street. The upper floors house a gym that overlooks the street, and the top floor has an outdoor area that provides an overlook onto the neighborhood. The message is clear, you live here because this is the place to be, and you want to interact with your surroundings.
With a little luck the next round of development will do more in the way of including “third-places” like coffee shops and bodegas on the ground floor. That would seem to complete the transition.