KERA Offers Historic Overview of Texas' Trinity River

KERA TV, which serves the Dallas-Fort Worth area, will broadcast a one-hour television documentary, "Living with the Trinity," at 9 p.m. Nov. 23 on KERA-TV to examine the period from 1965 to 1973 when the Trinity River was nearly transformed into a barge canal to the Gulf of Mexico.

The cities are currently considering plans to redevelop the Trinity River.

U.S. Congressman Jim Wright of Fort Worth, working with the Johnson Administration, won congressional approval of nearly $1-billion for what would become a highly controversial project. Seventeen counties in the river basin voted on a bond issue to supplement the federal funding. The bond issue failed by just 20,000 votes and the barge canal was never built.

“The most powerful people in Texas wanted the project to succeed,” says KERA’s Executive Producer and Project Director Rob Tranchin. “Why they wanted the canal and how they were defeated constitutes an amazing chapter in Texas environmental history.”

Living with the Trinity includes interviews with Wright, and Dallas businessman and former U.S. Congressman, Alan Steelman, who unseated four-term Congressman Earle Cabell in the 1972 election and rallied opposition to the project.

The television program and a four-page radio series that aired over KERA's radio station will be posted at TrinityRiverTexas.org following the premiere broadcast. The multimedia project is funded by a leadership grant from The Meadows Foundation with additional support provided by The Dixon Water Foundation.

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