- CultureMap

During the day, more than 30,000 people come into Uptown to work, shop, dine, relax, and explore. The Dallas neighborhood is a popular destination thanks largely to Uptown Dallas Inc., the public improvement district that maintains and beautifies it.

But the group also works hard to keep Uptown safe, spending more than 11 percent of its yearly budget on everything from extra police patrols to repaired crosswalks. Recently, UDI started hosting the Let’s Talk Uptown events, a series of open-to-the-public meetings where everyone who wants to be invested in the area can discuss important matters with the folks in charge.

Public safety was May’s topic, with DPD deputy chief Catrina Shead joining Michael Coughlin, director of security for Mid-America Apartments; Jim Peters, founder and president of the Responsible Hospitality Institute; and Noelle LeVeaux, UDI’s interim president, for a panel discussion.

The experts shared a few tips on how everyone can be a little safer while enjoying their time in Uptown. Here are some things to remember:

Be alert of suspicious activity
It’s important to take ownership of your neighborhood, and that means being tuned in to what’s happening around you. Whether that’s noticing out-of-place packages or people who are acting threatening, the best thing to do is notify the police. Deputy chief Shead notes that the more reports that come in about a potential incident, the more resources will be allocated to help resolve it. So if you see something, say something. Download and use the 311 and iWatch Dallas apps, which make it even easier to inform authorities.

Lock everything, every time
This applies to cars and residences, and it’s a basic first step to protecting yourself and your property. A common tactic for thieves is checking for unlocked car doors, even if there’s nothing enticing within view (though obviously don’t leave valuables out).

Eyes on the road
Behind the wheel, on a scooter, jogging the Katy Trail, riding the trolley, or just strolling around — it’s doesn’t matter how you’re moving, but that you’re paying attention. Uptown is a pedestrian-heavy neighborhood and it’s everyone’s responsibility to look out for each other. Scooter riders should stay off sidewalks and follow all traffic laws, and remember that pedestrians always have the right of way.

Visit UDI’s website to keep up to date on how the group is improving the area and everyone’s experience in it, and don’t forget to follow UDI on TwitterInstagram, and Facebook.