Our Saturday Eight Hundred is a Kessler Woods contemporary at 706 Kessler Woods Trail, perched at the top of the neighborhood. Listed by David Griffin for $849,500, it’s a rare opportunity to own a home for under a million dollars in what has become one of the hottest neighborhoods in Dallas.
Kessler Woods is an anomaly. I remember when it was developed in 2002. A lot of people scratched their heads and wondered who would want to live in a modern development, on a hill, in Oak Cliff. In 2000, the City of Dallas invested about $2.5 million into what is now the trendy Bishop Arts District. Their goal was to start the economic redevelopment ball rolling by creating a pedestrian-friendly area that would entice business owners to open up shops and restaurants. It worked, but it took some time.
Kessler Woods was an instrumental piece of the puzzle that not only contributed to Oak Cliff’s hipness, but also gained the area national recognition. The Toronto Globe got wind of the development project and published an article. That led to a piece in The New York Times in 2005, and before you know it, the renaissance was underway.
The opportunity to build a home in one of the few places in Dallas where the topography offers unparalleled views was a draw for discerning buyers who wanted to be in an exclusive neighborhood. There are only 30 homes in the gated community, and it’s one of the most arresting developments you will find anywhere in America.
Jonathan Delcambre designed this stunning home in 2007.
“It was a custom build for a couple that wanted to do a smaller house in the enclave that was a high-performance green home, so we designed it and built it out of structurally insulated panels (SIPs),” Delcambre said. “These are prefabricated wall and roof systems that produce a very airtight, sustainable home. Their first utility bill was a quarter of the cost of a traditional framed house.”
Delcambre was asked to create a home with a midcentury style that was intimate, but felt large, and had a lot of outdoor spaces to take advantage of the dramatic views.
“We were able to achieve the midcentury modern style with a newer framing technology and commercial design aspects that allowed for the larger expanses of glass,” Delcambre said. “We also wanted to recreate the Terrazzo floor look but without that expense. So, I used concrete and mixed-in aggregate to recreate the look.”
The house has changed hands only three times, and each owner has subsequently added a layer that has contributed to the style and efficiency of the home.
The present owner, Janie Hurley, has installed a water filtration system and antimicrobial filtration on the HVAC systems. Not only do you have a beautiful home with dramatic views, but it’s also now probably the cleanest house in Dallas.
The 2,366-square-foot home is wonderfully compact without feeling the least bit small. There’s not a bit of wasted space in the house and with two bedrooms, two full bathrooms and a powder bath, it’s the perfect size for a young couple or empty nesters.
“The house sits on the highest point in Kessler Woods,” listing agent David Griffin said. “One of the many wonderful things about Kessler Woods is that Twelve Hills Nature Preserve is on the northern boundary, so nothing can be built there. There are also no power lines; they are all buried. You look at nature as it’s meant to be seen.”
There are two downstairs patios, and the home flows gracefully from indoors to out for easy entertaining. If you’d rather go out, well Oak Cliff and Kessler Woods have come a long way in 15 years. You can now walk to Nova and the Kessler Theater.
Griffin is having an open house on Sunday from 2-4 p.m.
I’d get there early because this one will be sold before you can watch the sunset from the rooftop deck.
Karen Eubank is the owner of Eubank Staging and Design. She has been an award-winning professional home stager for more than 25 years. She’s been a professional writer for 20 years. Karen is the mother of a son who’s studying music at The University of Miami. An ardent animal lover, she doesn’t mind one bit if your fur baby jumps right into her lap. Find Karen at www.eubankstaging.com