The City of Arlington's Top 10 Stories of 2019
By Office of Communication
Posted on December 31, 2019, December 31, 2019

As we close out 2019, we're looking back at the biggest stories that shaped the year. From a Museum honoring America's best to progress at the new ballpark, here are ten of the year's top stories.

1. Arlington Selected as Site for Future National Medal of Honor Museum

The National Medal of Honor Museum Foundation announced that, following a national search, Arlington has been selected as the site for the future National Medal of Honor Museum. The first national museum of its kind is scheduled to open in 2024, in the City's Entertainment District. 

2. Arlington City Council Approves $810 Million Transformative Development Project

In early December, Arlington leaders approved an $810 million expansion of the Entertainment District, which will add a best-in-class hotel brand, new convention center, corporate office headquarters, mixed-use residential building, small business coworking and incubator space, and even more dining, retail, and entertainment options for residents and visitors alike.

3. Richard Simpson Lake House Opens at Lake Arlington

The Lake House, located at Richard Simpson Park, features an 1,800 square foot community room with an adjoining covered patio overlooking Lake Arlington, making the venue a great space for private event rentals, business meetings and corporate outings.

There are also new restrooms for residents and visitors, dedicated offices for lake staff, a lounge and rental room, a warming kitchen for rental and parks activities, and a reconfigured parking lot with direct sidewalk access to the boat dock.

4. $150 Million Flagship Live! by Loews Opens its Doors

The 300-room hotel boasts restaurants, a tower terrace, event lawn, outdoor infinity pool and private rooftop terrace, and incorporates a 35,000-square-foot expansion of the City's convention center facilities. The $150 million project also provides unparalleled access to AT&T Stadium, Texas Live!, Texas Rangers’ Globe Life Park and the soon-to-open Globe Life Field.

5. Progress at Globe Life Field 

Crews have spent 2019 hard at work on the Rangers' new home. When Globe Life Field opens in March, it will undoubtedly be one of the most premiere venues in sports. As of New Year's Eve, the ballpark is 89 percent complete 

6. Globe Life Park Finds New Life

As the Rangers move to Globe Life Field, the iconic Globe Life Park is finding a new identity. The park will play host to soccer matches and North Texas' new XFL team in 2020. Six Flags has also announced it will move its global headquarters to the park. 

7. I-20 Corridor Growth

Arlington continues to see growth along the I-20 corridor, with additions such as the Rent the Runway distribution center and the FedEx distribution center that have brought hundreds of new jobs to the city.

8. Via Rideshare Continues to Grow

Arlington's Via Rideshare service, which has provided more than 250,000 rides since it launched in December 2018, continues to grow. Starting in January, the service area will expand to south to include Tarrant County College Southeast Campus and the Interstate 20 Park and Ride lot at Park Springs Boulevard.

9. Construction at Arlington's Newest Recreation Centers

Construction is underway at the East Arlington Recreation Center and Library and the new Southeast Recreation Center.

The East Arlington Rec Center and Library is a collaborative project between the Parks and Recreation and Libraries departments and is the first of its kind in Arlington.

The 36,000 square foot Southeast Recreation Center is set to open in Summer 2020 and will include dynamic indoor and outdoor spaces including a gymnasium, fitness and weights area, aerobics and dance studio, classrooms, childcare, skatepark, adventure playground, outdoor aquatics feature and walking trail on the 12-acre site.

10. Arlington in the National Spotlight

The City of Arlington and its employees are constantly working to make our hometown an even better place to live, learn, work and play. And in 2019, that work did not go unnoticed. In April, Arlington was awarded Bloomberg Philanthropies' What Works Cities Certification, which recognizes cities for using data and evidence in the decision-making process.

In August, The Arlington Fire Department was the first agency in North Texas to earn its Emergency Management Accreditation Program (EMAP) reaccreditation. The Department's Office of Emergency Management  has developed a robust disaster preparedness and response system to create a safer community for our residents and visitors.

In July, the City's Office of Communication was the first in the country to receive the Sharman Stein Award for Storytelling Changemakers. The award, honoring the memory of What Works Cities’ founding Director of Communications, recognizes a city official or team who draws on the power of public communication to cultivate trust and collaboration between local government and residents.

Thank you for doing your part to make Arlington a great place to live, learn, work and play in 2019. And here's to an even better year ahead. 

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