One of the interesting stories THE Magazine editor Scot Hart told me during our recent interview for April’s Q&A in the Oak Cliff Advocate involved a large group of people, all of whom live in the metro area, who visited Bishop Arts for the first time. Hart’s magazine partners with the North Texas Business for Culture and the Arts, which asked him and his staff to host a Bishop Arts tour a few months ago.

"Sixty-five people showed up on a Saturday morning, and we asked for a showing of hands who had not been to Bishop Arts," Hart says. "Eighty percent raised their hands, so over the course of a few hours, we took them over to stores — Eno’s donated pizza, Tillman’s had a happy hour for us — and people left here very excited about Bishop Arts and, more importantly, with shopping bags in their hands, and many said they would definitely feel comfortable returning. Now the organization has asked us to do that as a yearly event because it was so popular with the members."

More on Hart’s thoughts concerning the future of Bishop Arts and the surrounding area, after the jump:

“We want that wealth and economics coming to this side of the river. We want people to feel comfortable coming to Bishop Arts. We want the diversity of business to grow along the Bishop and Davis corridors. I think it’s important to keep the flavor alive — I’d like to see a mix of Mexican American business along with more gentrified business. It’s a great opportunity for artists and some family businesses to come and begin.

"It would really become almost like a Berkeley of Dallas — a little hippie haven of eclectic artists and shops and homemade wares. I’d love to see a weekly farmer’s market in Bishop Arts, since Whole Foods and Sprouts and some of the other businesses refuse to come on this side of the river. I think we have to make our own.”