Your Dallas of Tomorrow: A Master Plan for a Greater Dallas Page: 10
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TRADE AND FINANCE CENTER
Dallas, like most American cities, has had
a rapid evolution from a small village
serving a surrounding farming community
to the large and complex metropolis of the
present day. Due to the rapid change of
the United States from an agricultural to
an industrial nation, the development of
cities in our country has been faster than
in any other period of known history.
During this rapid change, many forces
have acted to direct the growth and mold
the pattern of the city. We must have
some understanding of these forces, of their
role in the past growth of the city, and
of their influence on future growth, before
Dallas can be planned intelligently.
Study of the economic background of a
city is necessary to determine the answers
to two questions. First, why is the city
located where it is? Second, why is the
city as large as it is? It is obvious that the
answers to these questions must be known
before we can understand the basic prob-
lems of the urban area.
There are three major reasons for large
cities. First, large cities develop at places
where there is a break in transportation,
such as coastal towns where material is
unloaded from ships and then loaded on
trains. New York City and New Orleans
are examples of such cities. The second
reason is manufacturing. Pittsburgh and
Birmingham are examples of cities result-
ing from this cause. The third reason is
a large, populous and wealthy region which
the city serves as a trade center. Dallas
is such a city.
The city's population is equal to the
number of persons living within the cor-
porate limits and is made up of those em-
ployed, plus their dependents, including
those employed in various forms of busi-
ness, plus all others, employed or unem-
ployed. Employment in a city is furnished
by many factors, as retail and wholesale
trade, services, transportation and industry.
The amount and the character of this em-
ployment will depend upon three elements:
(1) geography and transportation, (2)
area, population and wealth of the trade
territory, and (3) location and use of raw
materials. Over a period of time national
trends, such as wars, large shifts in popu-
lation, and the like, affect the relative im-
portance of these elements. Improved
techniques and new ideas bring about new
products and new uses of materials. These
exert a tremendous influence. The people
of the city have a large influence in mod-
ifying the effect of these elements through
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Harland Bartholomew and Associates. Your Dallas of Tomorrow: A Master Plan for a Greater Dallas, report, September 1943; Dallas, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth610711/m1/12/: accessed July 6, 2020), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Dallas Municipal Archives.