2021 Candidates for FW Mayor

Brian Byrd

Daniel Caldwell

Mylene George

Mike Haynes

Cedric Kanyinda

Mattie Parker

Steve Penate

Deborah Peoples

Chris Rector

Ann Zadeh

Each candidate for mayor was given an opportunity to answer this questions from our organization.

"The city of Fort Worth has historically favored parts of the city west of I-35W. As mayor, how would you change this in a practical way for East Fort Worth and how would you improve the city’s focus and investment in East Fort Worth?"

This one isn’t for the faint of heart to answer, especially in front of scores of people who care deeply about East Fort Worth and who will be casting their ballot in the Fort Worth mayoral election starting later this month. The Candidates that responded are below:


Brian Byrd

Brian Byrd

I appreciate you all requesting a response from me regarding East Fort Worth. It has been helpful to me, a Westside resident, to spend some time getting to know the business and residential landscape that is on our Eastside.

There are a number of opportunities in Eastside growth centers and districts, such as Historic Handley Urban Village, Trinity Lakes, Oakland Corners, CentrePort, and Eastchase. These areas could benefit from attention and promotion of mixed-use, office, retail, and urban residential development.

A nice commercial foothold exists at Oakland Corners but to expect growth here will require consideration of how the homeless shelters affect Eastside business development. We should be deliberate about encouraging industrial development as a buffer.

Like other areas of town, the Eastside has some undeveloped lots that are zoned multi-family. These should be considered for conversion to MU or UR via a council or neighborhood initiative.

We have tremendous natural beauty on the Eastside which westbound I-30 travelers enjoy as they drive into Fort Worth. We should protect this space and look for other woodland preservation opportunities. They create a beautiful gateway into our city and serve as recreation areas for our neighborhoods.

Related to open spaces and getting our residents outdoors is the bike trail system which is slowly stretching to connect Fort Worth and Dallas. We should continue to fund these incremental extensions in our bond programs.

The Mayor can play a key role in these efforts by shining a light on East Fort Worth opportunities and making sure that city services and infrastructure are maintained and done well. We want to create safe, beautiful, and clean spaces that attract the attention of the right business developers.

Daniel Caldwell

caldwell

My approach to improving focus on and investment in East Fort Worth starts with pushing for bridges to improve regional mobility in east Fort Worth.

Specifically, there are no north-south roads between Haltom Rd. and Handley-Ederville Rd., and I would like to see Sanders St. extended to Oakland Blvd.

In addition, Minnis Dr. could be extended to Woodhaven Blvd. on the other side of Quanah Parker Park, but as a lesser priority.

I also want to encourage economic development by promoting and facilitating construction of feeder/service/access roads along I-30 (Tom Landry Fwy.) and alignment of any new on/off ramps in an X-configuration rather than the much-less-efficient “diamond” configurations. Service/access roads should connect Beach St. to Bridge St. on the northside of I-30 or Brentwood Stair Rd. on the southside of I-30.

Similarly, I want to see the east end of Randol Mill Rd. connected to Greenbelt Rd., either by cooperation with Arlington to connect John T. White Rd. to W. Lamar Blvd. or by upgrading and extending the maintenance road east of Precinct line to connect with a new bridge to Endress Ave, or eventually both.

You can also learn more about me at:danielcaldwell.brandyourself.com

Mylene George

mylene

It would be starting with the infrastructure. Fixing the roads to give them smoother driveability and fix the streetlights to give drivers better visibility on the roads.

After those things are completed we can follow a similar path as the west side of 35W in finding investors as well as speaking to residents to find out what they would want within their own community.

Mattie Parker

mattie

Quite simply, our reinvestment and focus on East Fort Worth will require less talk and more action. Our long-term success and vitality as a city hinges upon our ability to emphasize the opportunity and revitalization of East Fort Worth, and the only successful approach will require a heavy emphasis on private-public partnership that takes a boots on the ground approach.

My strategy will be multi-pronged on three themes:
1) Economic Development and Job Growth
2) Infrastructure for Success
3) Education to Prepare the Workforce of the Future:

Economic Development and Job Growth:
Creating private sector strike teams comprised of our strongest business leaders and job creators and integrating their expertise with our neighborhood and east Fort Worth business leaders. We develop a strategy that is implemented immediately, because it is imperative that we market East Fort Worth as an opportunity. This includes marketing vacant public and privately-land that is ready for development and investment.

Infrastructure for Success:
Prioritizing transportation and city infrastructure that serves our East Fort Worth residents while also enhancing the area to entice private investment. This includes storm water, street maintenance, code enforcement and continued opportunity to enhance our open space efforts that included the purchase of Broadcast Hill.

Additionally, we must utilize our public transportation and infrastructure to spur economic growth. There are terrific examples across the city, most recently the investment in South Main and the private investment that followed when the complete streets project was finished.

Lastly, is continued investment in technology infrastructure, including a robust and widespread community wifi deployment that the City of Fort Worth started with recent CARES Act funds. These efforts must continue to ensure every family in East Fort Worth has reliable access to the internet that is required to be successful in school, work and access to healthcare.

An Education Pipeline that Prepares our Students for the Workforce of Tomorrow:
Our emphasis and success at putting our students on a pathway to success in college, career and life across Fort Worth, but especially in East Fort Worth, must improve. City leaders have a direct responsibility in aligning all resources that will ensure every student has a pathway to a successful career.

Today, only 23 percent of Tarrant County students matriculate to a two year or four-year degree, and for our students growing up in a low-income household its 14 percent. Student success is our success, and the future of East Fort Worth requires our realization that our students deserve better and the community needs to rally behind our students, families and our educators.

Deborah Peoples

deborah peoples

I am a proud owner of a home in east Fort Worth. I have lived in Fort Worth almost my entire life and mainly east Fort Worth. I remember how vibrant East Lancaster was in this city. We can and must do this again. We can accomplish much by ensuring that our economic development staff truly focuses on this area.

We know that our median income is much higher than perception. If we can re-invigorate East Berry, we surely can do the same in our community. I am so very tired of the lack of new housing and having to go so far for quality groceries.

That is a travesty in this great city that we all love. If elected, I will welcome and expect your leadership and input. Together we can do this. I believe strongly in One Fort Worth.

I am committed to not just talking but keeping my promises to you, my neighbor. Let’s do this!!

Ann Zadeh

AnnZ

The concept that the city has not historically treated its east side residents and it’s west side residents the same way can not come as a surprise to anybody who has lived here for any length of time. It is my sincere hope and as mayor it will be the policy of my administration that this no longer be the case. The quality of treatment a resident of Fort Worth receives from any and all parts of the city’s government should not be affected by the zip code or the neighborhood in which that resident resides.

The squeaky wheel gets the grease delivery system, redlining and the construction of the highways have all contributed to underinvestment and disinvestment in specific neighborhoods and the segregation of people that live in those traditionally underserved areas. This is true across the country, and it is certainly true in Fort Worth as well. We must equalize the delivery of city services based on need and data, and not on the influence of the people served. Acceleration and additional investment in the neighborhood improvement program, to specifically catch up on investment in neighborhoods that have suffered as a result of previous inequitable delivery of services, may certainly be necessary to rectify historical inequities and catch those previously ignored neighborhoods up. A service delivery system that is based on data versus squeaky wheel and specific engagement of the individuals that live in and own businesses in these neighborhoods to have input into what reinvestment looks like are all priorities I would champion as Mayor.