Plans for the Berry/University area address the rapid growth of nearby TCU.

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This story first appeared on the109, TCU student media’s news site covering the 76109 ZIP code. 

Bike lanes, sidewalk improvements, diverse housing options and a new storm water draining system are among the latest proposals to improve parts of Berry Street.

The plan, which was presented Thursday evening at a meeting at University United Methodist Church, also calls for more work on University Drive south of Berry Street.

Katy O’Meilia, a senior planner with the city, said the Berry Street development should help improve the area’s image.

The city needs to overcome the “perception problem” of what has come to be known as “scary Berry,” she said.

“You feel like you’re in a completely different part of the city,” O’Meilia said.

Jennifer Frank, a Fort Worth resident who attended the meeting, was one of many who opposed the plan.

Frank said she fears the area would end up like West Seventh Street, which boasts high-density buildings like those proposed for Berry Street and University Drive.

“It’s an urban nightmare,” she said.

In addition to the street improvements, O’Meilia talked about a proposed train station at the corner of Berry Street and Cleburne Road. The train station would be part of a 27-mile commuter rail system called Tex Rail that will stretch from downtown Fort Worth to the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.

O’Meilia said the lack of landscaping – trees and greenery in the area – is “striking” when compared to the recent improvements made on Berry Street west of McCart Avenue.

She also talked about renovations to South University Drive to the Bluebonnet Circle area. O’Meilia said the area needs “proper urban form.”

The plan is still in its preliminary stages.