The WTF: City of Dallas is Limiting Weekend Access to Popular Trail by First Letter Of People’s Last Name

The Park and Recreation Department of Dallas is implementing a new strategy to decrease traffic on the city’s popular Katy Trail — limiting access by what letter your last name starts with.

The Dallas Park and Recreation Department is rolling out a new strategy to decrease traffic on the city’s renowned Katy Trail.

This strategy consists of limiting access to the trail by the first letter of a person’s last name.

The general public will be allowed to pass through the Katy Trail on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays.

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Starting on Thursday, April 23, during the rest of the week and on the weekends, users with the lasts names starting with A through L are being urged to use the the Katy Trail only on Thursday and Saturday. For those with the last names beginning with M through Z, they are being asked to use the trail on Friday and Sunday.

“We know that getting outdoors is another way for families to cope with stay-at-home regulations. Overcrowding and congestion on the Katy Trail make it nearly impossible for users to practice adequate physical distancing. Our communities’ safety remains our key concern. We are working together to reduce the spread on this pandemic,” remarked Dallas Park and Recreation Director John D. Jenkins. “We want our outdoor spaces to be accessible and we want visitors to do their part to protect themselves and others.”

On April 20, Dallas Mayor Eric Johnson tweeted about the new policy, “Beginning this Thursday, @DallasParkRec is implementing a new strategy to decrease traffic on the Katy Trail. M-W: Normal access Thursday and Saturday: Open to users with last names starting with letters A-L. Friday and Sunday: Open to users with last names M-Z.”


Johnson expanded on what Dallas’ policy entails in a news release that went out on April 20:

The Katy Trail is an incredible asset to our city, and I love that Dallas residents want to use it to get fresh air and exercise during these difficult and unprecedented times,” Johnson stated. “But I support the Park and Recreation Department’s approach to creating adequate physical distancing on the Katy Trail. We cannot allow this amenity to become a health hazard. We have to be willing to adjust our practices and behaviors and take personal responsibility to stop the spread of COVID-19 so that we can save lives and get through these challenging times as quickly as possible.

The new policy is part of a plan to implement social distancing and keep the Wuhan Virus from spreading in the Dallas area.


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