The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) will begin registrations on April 30 and open applications May 3 for the Restaurant Revitalization Fund. The online application will remain open to any eligible establishment until all funds are exhausted.
Established under the American Rescue Plan, the Restaurant Revitalization Fund provides $28.6 billion in direct relief funds to restaurants and other hard-hit food establishments that have experienced economic distress and significant operational losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This program will provide restaurants with funding equal to their pandemic-related revenue loss up to $10 million per business and no more than $5 million per physical location. Funds must be used for allowable expenses by March 11, 2023.
The SBA recommends qualifying applicants familiarize themselves with the application process in advance to ensure a smooth and efficient application experience, specifically by registering for an account in advance starting at 8 a.m. April 30.
For the first 21 days that the program is open, the SBA will prioritize funding applications from businesses owned and controlled by women, veterans and socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. All eligible applicants are encouraged to submit applications as soon as the portal opens. Following the 21 days, all eligible applications will be funded on a first-come, first-served basis.
Consistent with the legislation and the intent of Congress, the SBA continues to take steps to ensure the equitable distribution of relief, particularly for the smallest businesses, by creating a $9.5 billion set-aside.
To learn more, visit the program site in English or Spanish.
Trail Drive Management Corp., the not-for-profit operating company for Dickies Arena, is hiring for part-time positions. Hiring will focus on filling hourly positions in the food and beverage, operations, parking and box office departments as well as other event-based roles.
Successful candidates will enjoy on-the-job training, flexible part-time hours, an employee incentive program, competitive wages and sporting and live events.
Minimum age to work is 18. Participants must preregister online.
The City Council voted 8-1 Tuesday evening to accept the final report of the Redistricting Task Force and establish criteria and procedures for the upcoming redistricting process.
In 2016, Fort Worth voters approved an amendment to the City Charter to increase the number of City Council members from nine to 11 following the completion of the 2020 Census. The Task Force on Race and Culture in December 2018 recommended the goal of ensuring that the City Council reflects the diverse communities that it represents.
In March, the Redistricting Task Force presented 10 criteria for redistricting. The task force also suggested that software training be provided to residents who are interested in the redistricting process, and that proposed redistricting plans submitted by residents be analyzed and presented to the City Council.
The group urged for transparency in the redistricting process by requiring all map drawing to occur at public meetings, with computer screens visible to all parties.
Beginning in the coming weeks and continuing through summer, city staff will provide software training for interested residents, using unofficial population estimates pending the release of official population counts. During this period, residents may also register communities of interest for redistricting purposes.
In addition, the task force has requested a joint work session with the City Council, to be held sometime in the fall after the U.S. Census Bureau releases block-level population data from the 2020 census. The Census Bureau is expected to release these population counts by Sept. 30, 2021.
Houston-based program and organizational change managers Athenian Group has been tapped as the project manager for the new City Hall and the programming-related moves and improvements to several other city-owned buildings.
The group will evaluate the future of the new City Hall’s office space utilization, programming functions for the new City Hall and nine other city-owned buildings, including assessment of the city’s leased spaces for possible cost savings. They will also determine workplace improvement plans at the new City Hall and construction of a new Council chamber.
Athenian is a Business Equity professional services firm that is Minority Business Enterprise-certified in Houston and is in the final stages of reciprocal certification in the Fort Worth market area. On this venture, the company has teamed up with Intelitrac, a Fort Worth-based government contracting firm, to help drive efficient building standards and overall community expertise.
City staff put out a request for qualifications in December 2020 for a professional project management team. The RFQ was advertised and forwarded to various consulting firms, Business Equity firms and interested parties, both locally and nationally. In February, the city received proposals from 16 consultant teams.
A selection team -- comprised of members from the City Manager’s Office, the City Hall Steering Committee, Property Management Department and the Diversity & Inclusion Department’s Business Equity Office -- reviewed the proposals and selected four firms to interview. Based on the qualifications and interviews, the selection team ranked Athenian at the top of the pack.
The Athenian team has extensive experience that makes them highly qualified for this project, including leading consolidation of the City of Seattle’s city-owned buildings into an existing 62-story downtown office tower and unifying the City of Houston’s public-facing services into the Houston Permitting Center, as well as a similar evaluation of Houston’s City Hall offices. Additionally, they have carried out other sizable consolidation, relocation and council chamber programming efforts for such clients as Los Angeles County.
Currently, the 10 city buildings to be programmed include:
The programming effort will aim to consolidate city functions, promote collaboration and innovation, reduce city leasing costs in other buildings and evaluate buildings for potential sale.
CELEBRATE EARTH WEEK 2021 WITH THE FORT WORTH MUSEUM OF SCIENCE AND HISTORY
MUSEUM CONNECTS COMMUNITY TO THE 51ST ANNIVERSARY OF EARTH DAY WITH A FULL WEEK OF EARTH-THEMED PROGRAMMING
The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History invites you to celebrate Earth Week by learning about the world around you! The Museum will bring together educators, scientists, and local partners to celebrate Earth Week, providing hands-on experiments, live demonstrations, and interactive lessons.
“Earth Week gives people all over the world a time to think about how we all do our part to take care of the planet,” said Dr. Doug Roberts, the Museum’s Chief Public Engagement Officer.
From April 19 – April 25, participants will be able to learn all about the environment through a series of pre-recorded Earth-themed videos, engage with live events on the Museum’s Facebook page, and compete in the Museum’s first-ever Earth Week Scavenger Hunt for a chance to win prizes from the Museum, Tarrant Regional Water District, and other local partners.
Here are just a few of the experiences planned for Earth Week:
HOW TO STAY INVOLVED
We invite you to help support our mission and stay connected with the Museum:
To learn more about Earth Week 2021 and view the complete Earth Week schedule, visit: www.fwmuseum.org/earth-day-2021. Two of the live Earth Week programs include materials kits. To register for your materials kit, visit: form.jotform.com/210626340185954.
Earth Week 2021 is part of the Museum’s hybrid programming model, combining in-person learning opportunities and special events with digital community-based experiences. To learn more about the Museum’s upcoming schedule of programs, visit www.fwmuseum.org/explore/upcoming-events.
Earth Week 2021 is generously supported by Central Market and the Tarrant Regional Water District.
Sean Kenney’s Nature Connects Made with LEGO® Bricks, an award-winning and record-breaking exhibition that uses beautiful works of art made from simple toy blocks to explore animal endangerment, the balance of ecosystems, and humanity’s relationship with nature is coming to the Fort Worth Botanic Garden | Botanical Research Institute of Texas (FWBG|BRIT) from May 6 through Aug. 1, 2021.
Produced by Imagine Exhibitions, Nature Connects depicts important topics that the New York artist Sean Kenney holds dear, from protecting an animals’ habitat, to planting a garden, or showcasing a beautiful orchid – subject matter with particular appeal to gardens.
“Through captivating art with an educational message, Nature Connects creates yet another way for visitors to experience the Botanic Garden,” said FWBG|BRIT Assistant Director Bob Byers. “The summer timing is perfect for children out of school and families on vacation looking for new ways to enjoy the outdoors.”
Tom Zaller, CEO of Imagine Exhibitions, said “The messages in the exhibition about our connection to nature are beautifully presented and effectively weaved into the story in the hopes of inspiring visitors to think more about mankind’s impact on the greater world around us.”
Explore the beauty and wonder of Sean Kenney’s Nature Connects Made with LEGO® Bricks, open daily to the public from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. for a limited engagement May 6 through Aug. 1. Exhibit viewing is included with the price of garden admission or free with an annual membership. To purchase tickets, visit fwbg.org.
Authored By Chris Smith, MBA
Trinity Metro is redesigning its bus network to create A Better Connection and we need your help to finalize the Draft Plan. We incorporated the changes that riders showed preference in the Goals and Alternatives outreach efforts. The Draft Plan provides some more regular service across the system, straighter routes, and added service to new areas.
SYSTEM REDESIGN KEY CHANGES
We would like to get feedback on the routes presented in the Draft Plan. Please consider taking the Draft Plan survey to submit your feedback. It will only take about seven minutes.
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BY LUKE RANKER, Star-Telegram
With no fanfare, the White Settlement Road bridge near downtown opened to traffic Friday, more than six years after Fort Worth dignitaries gathered for an explosive ceremony to kick start construction of Panther Island.
Construction crews dragged barricades off the roadway just before 4 p.m., but little was said about the bridge’s opening. The seemingly perpetually delayed bridge had become a bane for businesses in the area that were cut off from downtown.
“The entire area is excited for that bridge to be opened up,” said Steve Metcalf, president of the White Settlement Road Development Task Force. “We’re fired up.”
Of the three bridges under construction for the $1.17 billion Panther Island project, White Settlement is the only one without an obvious detour, forcing downtown motorists who want to reach Metcalf’s Dealer Alternative, 2701 White Settlement Rd., or nearby Angelo’s BBQ to take a long route down West Seventh Street.
The lack of thru traffic put a damper on business along White Settlement Road. Metclaf said on average over the last few years Dealer Alternative’s business had been down about 15%. With COVID-19 restrictions, business was down nearly 30% last year, though he said he wanted to remain positive about the bridge opening.
“I don’t want to worry about spilled milk,” he said.
At Angelo’s BBQ, 2533 White Settlement Rd., sales have been down 20% to 25% since the road closed, owner Jason George said. He’s hoping things will pick up soon, especially if drivers who want to avoid congested West Seventh start using White Settlement. That congestion may pick up as the city moves forward with a improvements to West Seventh that will likely cause lane closures.
“Compared to how our lunches have been over the past few years, today was very, very good,” George said.
Chopped beef sandwiches are just $3 this week to celebrate the opening, which he said was a surprise. Some workers had told him the bridge could open last Thursday, but at one point a large electric sign advertised April 7.
The spans are needed to connect Panther Island to the rest of Fort Worth and must be finished before the Army Corps of Engineers can begin digging a 1.5-mile bypass channel between the two forks of the Trinity River. The channel portion of the project has lacked federal funding for several years.
When Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price, U.S. Rep. Kay Granger and others gathered to celebrate the official start of the project in November 2015 with a ceremonial explosion, the bridges were expected to open between 2017 and 2018, according to Star-Telegram archives. Design issues held up construction and their opening was pushed to 2019. Then project officials said the White Settlement bridge would be finished by late summer 2020, but the date was pushed back again to the end of last year. COVID-19 and construction delays pushed the date into 2021 with speculation during Trinity River Vision Authority board meetings that White Settlement would open in February or March. TxDOT put the opening date in “early 2021.”
Bridges for North Main and Henderson should open in the coming months. The bridges cost about $90 million, but damages may be assessed related to delays of White Settlement, a TxDOT spokesperson said.
Some lanes on the bridge may close to traffic as crews from contractor Sterling Texas wrap up work, according to a media advisory TxDOT posted Friday afternoon. Pedestrians may cross on the south side of the bridge, but the north sidewalk is still closed.
A spokesperson for the Trinity River Vision Authority said the city and TxDOT did not formally announce the opening. Metcalf said he received calls from the city a few days before it opened.
About 30 minutes after the barricades were removed, Metcalf said he started to see cars trickling over the bridge.
“I imagine some of those people driving over the bridge don’t know it’s been closed for nearly seven years,” Metcalf said.
FORT WORTH, Texas (April 1, 2021) — The Fort Worth Botanic Garden | Botanical Research Institute of Texas (FWBG|BRIT) invites visitors to the inaugural “Spring Market in the Garden” May 2 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event offered throughout the combined campus includes the annual Spring Sip and Shop, a new Tea and Coffee Festival, and a free Afternoon in the Garden (12 p.m. – 2 p.m.).
With numerous local artisans, food trucks, live music and more, this indoor-outdoor event is enhanced by the full-bloom beauty of spring in Fort Worth.
“Spring Market in the Garden is the perfect place to shop, eat, and enjoy the blooming garden landscape,” says FWBG|BRIT Assistant Director Bob Byers. “Support your local artisans, social distance, and sip on a favorite beverage while exploring our other exhibits, such as Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty and Topiaries in the Garden.”
This event will follow Tarrant County and CDC guidelines (social distancing, sanitizing stations, and masks will be required indoors).
The Fort Worth Community Arts Center is pleased to announce Jose "Mr. Lonely" Salinas' first solo exhibition, From Behind the Walls. In the form of ink drawings and poetry, Salinas' art portrays his life, dreams, and regrets during his time incarcerated in prison, sharing his struggles with addiction and longing for home from "behind the walls."
Salinas’ work is greatly influenced by and embodies Chicano imagery and the work in From Behind the Walls infuses those elements with vignettes of an imprisoned person's life and fantasies: religious icons, temptations, and family members. Images of hope and hopelessness weave throughout Salinas' work and he states that his artwork became a source of therapy, allowing him to stay focused. In many ways, Salinas’ voice is not one heard often in art spaces and he hopes that his art tells a complicated story beyond a cautionary tale.
Like all exhibitions on view in the Arts Center’s nine gallery spaces, From Behind the Walls is free to visit, Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The exhibition opened at the Fort Worth Community Arts Center on March 26, 2021 and will be in view until May 15, 2021. An interview with artist Jose Salinas is scheduled to premiere April 15, 2021 on the Arts Center’s website www.fwcac.org.
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