Windsor Place

Back in Berkley Place and guess who we run into? It’s Ruth Story of the Ruth Story Group, naturally, who has made Berkley Place her turf and area of expertise. And what a perfect plum of a listing she has landed at 2225 Windsor Place. This sort of house used to be fairly plentiful in, say, University Park, but has become an endangered species having been torn down by the dozens. There may be new builds in Berkley Place resulting from tear-downs, but I can’t think of any (nor do I want to know of any).

Curb appeal? Abundant. Arched openings, dappled brick, and a Spanish tile roof are the materials comprising the charming, rambling façade. Though not symmetrical, the plan is rational, comprised of a strong central core and two, smaller, wings. One frames the  porte-cochère, the other houses the garden room. The central bay is broken by a chimney and symmetrically disposed windows above and below, on either side. On the right is arched, columned entrance which steps forward from the wall plane.

Windsor Place

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On my way home a few weeks ago, I saw an “Open House” sign in front of 2017 Windsor Place in Berkeley Place. And, it was in the middle of the week around five o’clock in the afternoon. Inside I met up with Ruth Story, head of the Ruth Story group, a boutique agency created in 2003 under the umbrella of Keller Williams Fort Worth. Ruth Story is truly a family operation with Ruth’s husband, Rick, specializing in ranch and farmland sales and daughter, Kati, concentrating on new construction like Walsh.

“Odd time for an open house,” I opine.

“We find we pull in more serious buyers during the week, though we still do week end open houses,” explained Ruth.

Inventory in Berkeley Place is famously low, with listings on the market for  60 days or less. And, access to highly rated Lily B. Clayton Elementary School creates a strong draw for young families to this old, Near Southside neighborhood. (more…)

Some Fort Worth Fridays are truly serendipitous. This week’s FWF was the result of a blocked-for-construction Windsor Parkway that detoured me through lovely Berkley Place. As with neighboring Ryan Place, some of the most beautiful properties lie in the quiet side streets. And so I landed at 2215 Ward Parkway, a street I had never been on.

There is much here that could instruct a modern builder. The façade is almost self consciously simple and yet so engaging. Built in 1941, it flaunts the disciplined symmetry of an earlier era. A special finish — white wash — converts the red brick into a soft rose, which harmonizes beautifully with pale blue trim color. Windows are correctly placed above windows, with the second floor windows crowned by discrete peaks.

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Windsor Place

It’s rare when a two story on a desirable Berkley Place street comes up for sale, so when I saw a sign in front of  2224 Windsor Place, I felt compelled to write about it.

Well, on the market last week under contract this week — priced at $630,000, it sits at a market-moving sweet spot. It doesn’t hurt either, that the center of gravity in Fort Worth is shifting with new development in Edward’s Ranch, Waterside, and Clearfork, just west of its venerable Near South Side neighborhoods. The interest that this property garnered and its short duration on the market  suggest that the 2,749-square-foot house may have been underpriced even though it falls within the average $230 per square foot range for the neighborhood.

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Berkley Place

Long gone are the days when a bargain could be found in the neighborhood of Berkley Place, a pleasant mix of imposing pre-war manses and quaint bungalows, a common element I find endearing about the old Near South Side neighborhoods. Mistletoe Heights, Park Hill, and Ryan Place all constructed impressive villas on a grand scale, but felt comfortable cohabiting with smaller neighbors.

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