Crestfield Place debuts tomorrow evening, as we have told you, beginning at 4:30 p.m. over at 2204 Moser in the East Village. This is Cobalt Homes’ second foray into high end, dense living townhomes in urban infill. I caught up with the architect, Josh Nimmo, because I am giddy with delight over the project and the fact that you can now buy a beautiful, designer-label townhome in Dallas for under $600,000.

Let me put it to you this way: Josh Nimmo is the kind of architect who does multi-million dollars homes, like the one right next to me. While with famed architect Lionel Morrison FAIA, he worked on the W Dallas Residences, One Arts Plaza Residences, that famous Northaven Residence, and LEED Gold Certified International Business Park Phase 15.

That’s why I see Crestfield Place as so much more than another great East Village option: it is proof that developers can churn out a middle-cost project of great design without breaking the bank! 

CD: Josh, what was the single most gutsy move attached to this project?

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2707 State Street, home of Patricia and Curtis Meadows

I’m about to give you the dirt on this State Thomas treasure. You’ll be waiting to hear how it was built around the turn of the century, updated in the mid fifties and then eighties, right? The State Thomas neighborhood contains the largest collection of Victorian-era homes remaining in Dallas. Known as Freedman’s Town, it was created immediately after Emancipation (as in the Civil War) as a separate settlement adjacent to the town of Dallas — adjacent, but not in it. By the close of Reconstruction in 1874, Freedman’s Town was incorporated into Dallas, bustling with about 500 citizens.

The area is rich with history in a town where you really have to turn up stones to find it. In 1986, State Thomas was established as a Special Purpose District, making it an urban peripheral of downtown Dallas. It was christened Uptown. The area would soon become one of the most bustling urban success stories in the country, loaded with downsizing baby boomers and energetic millennials coming in as fast as they could.

In 1986, not one of their peers was nearby. In fact, they were still opening garage doors in the Park Cities, Preston Hollow and North Dallas. But State Thomas was exactly where Curtis and Patricia Meadows wanted to settle for their retirement. (more…)

Valton and Jennifer Morgan with their son at Klyde Warren Park.

When you hear of someone moving to Uptown you probably assume, like me, it’s not because it will save them money. And not because it’s a great place to raise kids. For Jennifer Morgan and her family, though, both of those proved to be true. She and her husband and son are are saving money, are happier than ever, and are even finally planning a long-anticipated family vacation.

It all started with a spreadsheet of family expenses — and the recognition that life was not as satisfying as they’d planned. Jennifer had worked in Uptown for 13 years and her husband, Valton, had begun working in Uptown about 2.5 years ago. Which meant they both commuted almost an hour and a half, each way, to their home near Frisco. Even though they worked in the same area, their son’s school schedule made it impossible to carpool.

By the time they got home, their 8-year-old son had been at school or daycare all day and was over sitting still, over doing homework, and was a rowdy, moody handful. And they had just enough time for dinner, bath, and bed. They missed spending quality time with their son. And each other.

But it was this spreadsheet (after the jump) that convinced them to seriously consider making a move — then every other question mark fell into place one by one, better than they could’ve imagined.

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With a delicious blend of textures and finishes, today’s Saturday Seven Hundred is the epitome of cool. And at a bit over $300 per square foot, it’s luxury cool. Situated within walking distance of the Arts District and Klyde Warren Park, the location of this amazing urban loft can’t be beat. Seriously, cool. But don’t take my word for it. The 22-foot, floor-to-ceiling windows speak for themselves. This two bedroom, two bathroom condo at 2011 Cedar Springs Road Apartment 102 is listed by Tod G. Franklin with Dfwcityhomes at $725,000.

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Video courtesy of Uptown Dallas, Inc.

Something has to be done. Uptown is beginning to feel a bit like Greenville Ave. did a few years back. Remember? The late night crime and violence, residential streets overrun with youthful overindulgence, and uninvited visitors parking in front of residences … to put it nicely.  Uptown is on the cusp of being known as similarly problematic area — unless we can do something now to curb that trajectory. As Uptown Dallas, Inc. works diligently to attract more young families, improve the schools, and focus on great parks, the late night bar scene is (literally) spilling into the streets and driving a higher police presence.

Two potential solutions have surfaced and exploration began last night at a formal community input session hosted by the City of Dallas Department of Sustainable Development and Construction:

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age

When it comes to real estate trends, no one knows them better than Jed Kolko. I say that not because I have been to dinner with him, and met him at Inman & NAREE several times while he was Chief Economist and VP of Analytics at Trulia, the online real estate site that merged with Zillow, until the middle of last year. He just really knows his stuff.

And Jed says that urban neighborhoods are not the go-to nirvana we have been told they are, with cities and vertical living shooting up faster than the suburbs are spreading. You know we hear how downtowns are booming — in fact, the Dallas City Council just voted unanimously on a resolution dictating that Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART, of which Dallas is a member) build a second downtown rail alignment (D2) as a subway, NOT a light rail train, because it will be less disruptive to the downtown landscape. Who cares about a train from Plano to DFW?  Dallas focused on developing a great Arts District near downtown in anticipation of downtown, art-loving residents.  And developers built luxury apartment after luxury condo in anticipation of the droves coming to the urban center like a pilgrimage.

Uh, actually not, says Jed:young-extras (more…)

Photo: RealTech Dallas

John Backes, left, at the RealTech Dallas event “Cultivate: Building the Next Big Thing in Real Estate.” Photo: RealTech Dallas

John Backes is a young real estate entrepreneur, technology innovator, and champion of the city of Dallas. He practically vibrates with energy and ideas, and has a sort of raw enthusiasm that’s utterly sincere and unscripted.

The St. Mark’s grad is passionate about bringing new ideas to the real estate community by collaborating with the active start-up community in Dallas. That motivation is showing up in myriad ways in his life.

As we wrote about yesterday, he is launching the MOTIVE Accelerator Program this fall. This exciting program will fund selected commercial real estate technology start-ups, as well as provide mentoring through a program oriented around customer and product development.

Backes was also the co-founder of RealTech Dallas 12 months ago, which brings together the startup community with the real estate industry.

His new company, DXZ Media, is a full-service branding and digital marketing agency that aims to solve complex problems related to technology, identity, and strategy.

Sound like a full plate? It’s not even the beginning. He’s also a mentor at the The Dallas Entrepreneur Center and advisor at PoshPublic, a curated crowdfunding platform which allows artists or nonprofits to create a campaign at no upfront cost and no risk. There’s so much more. And the ideas just keep coming.

“We have an incredible story here in Dallas of innovative real estate companies, and so many tech start-ups, too. There was so much vibrancy, but no intersection,” Backes said. “Every day, I feel like I’m in a very dynamic center of change.”

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The W Residences Unit 2001 Living

Highrise living — and we’re talking living at the tippy-top, y’all — doesn’t have to cost you an arm and a leg and leave you with that vague sinking feeling. Would you believe me if I told you that you could live on the 20th floor in the W Residences at Victory Park for less than $400K? You can, y’all! And you can get all of the eyebrow wagging cachet and amenities that come with living inside The W.

This unit, which is on the 20th floor, has amazing views and a great open floor plan through the living, dining, and kitchen areas. Plus you get a great little balcony/terrace. Of course, you get access to all of the swank amenities at the W Hotel, including 24-hour valet, private pool, room service, access to the spa, and a location you can’t beat!

The W Residences Unit 2001 Balcony

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