Meet the Neighbors: Heart of Arlington Neighborhood Association

In the heart of Arlington, a coalition of neighborhoods works together not only to preserve their area’s character and rich history but to make today and tomorrow better for the families who live, work and learn there.

The Heart of Arlington Neighborhood Association, known as HANA, is a large, diverse community immediately south of Downtown that features some of the city’s oldest homes and buildings. While HANA’s boundaries includes some Victorians that date back to the late 1800s and a substantial number of mid-century homes, the community is also beginning to attract new residential development marketed toward students and young professionals who want to live near Downtown and the rapidly growing University of Texas at Arlington.

“This neighborhood is once again under transition,” HANA President Rebecca Boxall said. “I think a lot of people of people recognize that. And while they want to preserve their neighborhood, they also want to embrace change – but they want to be part of how that change occurs.”

Residents who live in HANA boundaries stay actively involved in issues that affect their community, meeting quarterly to discuss and learn more about city services and programs, safety and code compliance concerns, new development, as well as volunteer opportunities. The City of Arlington is proud to feature the Heart of Arlington Neighborhood Association in this month’s episode of Meet the Neighbors, a regularly scheduled web and video program that spotlights neighborhoods large and small across The American Dream City.

From 2010 to 2013, HANA leaders worked with the City of Arlington to develop a Neighborhood Action Plan to guide the evolution of their community over the coming years. In addition to installing street sign toppers to enhance the community’s identity, some of HANA’s other accomplishments include establishing a Facebook page to keep members informed and also working closely with apartment complex developers to ensure their projects align with the goals of the Neighborhood Action Plan.

At Julia Burgen Park, HANA worked with the Parks and Recreation Department to replace a chain link fence with a wood rail fence, which helped open up the area to residents and beautify the curb appeal of the park. The association also invested more than $7,000 into the park, which sits along Johnson Creek, to install amenities such benches, picnic tables and landscaping to encourage walking, wildflower viewing, bird and butterfly observation and natural history studies.

HANA’s future goals include working with property owners and the City of Arlington to build a sidewalk along a stretch of Park Row Drive. Another goal is to install a historical marker along Center Street to celebrate its importance in helping farmers get cotton and other goods to the rail station and cotton gins during Arlington’s early development as it transitioned from a crossroads into a town.

“We really are the heart of Arlington,” HANA Vice President Barbara Salser said. “Center street cuts through our neighborhood. We would like to preserve a bit of the history of Center Street and get people to recognize that it’s got a history that needs to be remembered.”

The City’s Office of Communication develops programming for MyArlingtonTV. Viewers can find MyArlingtonTV programs on the following cable systems: Spectrum Channel 16 and AT&T U-Verse channel 99, and streaming capabilities at www.arlington-tx.gov.

All episodes are also available on the City’s YouTube channelFacebook page and Twitter account.

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One thought on “Meet the Neighbors: Heart of Arlington Neighborhood Association”

  1. Great job, Tika Cook, on this piece! Thanks for spotlighting our diverse, interesting and awesome neighborhood! Well done!

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