Recent developments surrounding the Golf Club of Dallas, formerly the Oak Cliff Golf Club, bring to mind a panel discussion at June’s National Association of Real Estate Editors confab.  Seems golf clubs are not as popular with the young as they are with their parents’ and grandparents’ generations.  There are several reasons for this, including shifting socialization patterns, negative perceptions of the game’s culture, and cost.

It seems that as society has picked the pockets of young people for everything from student debt to over-priced apartments, there’s simply less in the kitty for expensive pastimes like golf.  And golf is an expensive activity.  Aside from the stereotypically garish ensembles, it’s not difficult to drop a grand on a set of clubs, a couple of hundred on shoes, and upwards of $50 for every dozen balls. And that’s before you hit the links.

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Last night’s community meeting with Huffines Communities at the Golf Club of Dallas on Redbird Lane felt like a bad setup. The room was at capacity with literally hundreds more still standing in line, out to the middle of the parking lot, when the presentation began.

“I hope all these people are against the project” said one woman in front of me. Everyone seemed to be talking about how the proposed small lots and low price point were a bad fit for the neighborhood. It was a very diverse crowd – a cross-section of the diversity that people love about Oak Cliff, from very young to very old and all types and kinds of ethnicities of people. Even Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price was there.

When Donald Huffines — who is also a Texas state senator — got to the mic. he began by showing images of developments he’s built in his 30 years of experience. Water parks, waterfalls into lakes, Cape Cod-inspired town homes, and ‘no brick facades’ – so homeowners are able to paint their exteriors … Demonstrating in pictures what their website says about another project they planned, “This community will offer residents the signature Huffines Communities lifestyle along with traditional resort-style amenities, several highly regarded builders, and year-round resident activities.”

The neighbors didn’t want slick pictures of other places — they wanted to hear what was planned for their neighborhood. The presentation was cut short and the crowd got rowdy. Dallas City Council Member Casey Thomas did his best to calm the crowd. Eventually we heard, “There is no plan yet. We’re here tonight to hear what the neighborhood wants.” With over 500 people in a jam-packed audience that was a tall order. (more…)

Drees Custom Homes nabbed Builder of Year honors

Drees Custom Homes nabbed Builder of Year honors

I have to thank the Dallas Builders Association (DBA) for a very good “last meal” before a business trip to Orlando last week.  With 63 categories, it certainly wasn’t a small, small world that packed the Westin Galleria.  This year’s festivities were kept on track by former Good Morning Texas host Amy Vanderoef who did an enviable job of moving the crowd through its paces.

MC Amy Vanderoef amused by an appreciative audience

Emcee Amy Vanderoef amused by an appreciative audience

It was also a different kind of awards from our usual DBA coverage.  The ARC awards in the summer honor single-family homes and renovations.  The McSAM awards are for developers who build communities and their associated services.

Here are a smattering of the winners:

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