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Leading Off (4/9/12)

Trinity Parkway: Still Crazy After All These Years: The Federal Highway Administration has released a report commissioned in 2009 that analyzes various alignments of the Trinity Parkway, and you can see all four volumes of the report in this blog post, which circumvents the pay-walled DMN story here and this rundown of the details. The takeaway: the report favors the city’s favorite alignment, to stick the parkway in between the river and the east levee. Still unknown, however, is how to pay for the $1.76 billion road; whether or not the Corps of Engineers will actually allow a road to be built in a floodway; or, most importantly, whether the traffic relief or development-spurring potential of the parkway is worth the astronomical cost or squandering the full potential of transforming Dallas’ largest natural asset in a usable public space. There will be a public hearing on May 6, but you know what you will hear then: The citizens of Dallas voted for a park. We now have a bridge and a plan for a road. Same as it ever was.

UTD Researchers Build Robotic Jellyfish: You know what is cooler than building a parkway in your park space? Building a robotic jellyfish (paywall). That’s what researchers at UT Dallas and Virginia Tech have done, and the hope is that the hydrogen-powered RoboJelly, as they are calling it, will be able to generate its own energy while being deployed to perform underwater surveillance. Here’s a video of the robo-beast in action.

Excited About The Return of Rangers Baseball? Yu Betcha! The Rangers took the season’s opening series last night. Tonight’s the night Yu Darvish throws his first major league pitch. Napoli will catch. The Rangers are expecting a near-sellout, with just 6,000 tickets left for tonight’s game.