Drawing property of UT Alexander Architectural Archives

By Donovan Westover
Special Contributor

The 1935 Walton House has always perched on the center of its vast Bluffview Estates lot, the landscape and grounds cascading down around it with a natural flow. Carol and James Walton selected a huge lot in Bluffview for their impressive 1930s home. At the time, Walton owned and ran City Wrecking and Trading Co., an early Dallas architectural demolition and salvage company.  He later expanded into supplying steel building products. It leads me to wonder if Charles Dilbeck did not use City Wrecking for his rustic architectural elements.  It would make sense.

Photography by Carolyn Brown

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Photo: Carolyn Brown

By Donovan Westover
Special Contributor

When I began working with Dilbeck connoisseurs Willis Winters and Jann Patterson Mackey on house selection for Preservation Dallas’ October 27th Fall Architectural Tour – Charles Dilbeck In Dallas, they stressed the need for us to feature a Cochran Heights home.  The neighborhood recently received a Texas Historical Commission marker recognizing it as a significant part of Texas history, based upon the numerous Dilbeck designed houses in the neighborhood.

 

Photo: Carolyn Brown

The entire neighborhood is fun and peculiar to immerse in, and the house we focused on is a super intact library of Dilbeck’s quirk.  So much so that the house still has the 1936 kitchen and bathroom!  While it may be the tour’s most modest Dilbeck house, it delivers a powerful punch.  The current stewards have taken incredible care of this little gem as only the third owners, and I can hear the cameras clicking away to capture all the surprising details.

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211 S Windomere Avenue, Dallas, Texas, is currently listed by Diane Sherman and Vinnie Sherman of David Griffin & Company Realtors for $449,500. Open House this Sunday, Sept. 23, 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Dallas preservationists take note — an incredible three-bedroom, two-full-bathroom Craftsman circa 1911 was just listed in Winnetka Heights for $449,500! Sited on a rare, interior full lot, with an extra half lot, the home affords an idyllic location on a premier block and is chock full of original architectural details.

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Photograph courtesy of Dallas Fire Department

By Donovan Westover
Special Contributor

My heart sank when I learned my favorite Charles Dilbeck-designed house had burned to the ground.  An exterior appliance started the 2016 blaze, which quickly spread throughout the 9,000-square-foot house replete with acres of 55-year-old wood shingles, wood siding, and wood ornamentation.  I was super sad for the loss to the family, as well as saddened for the loss of such a significant home … albeit not to a bulldozer, this time.

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Become an Authority on Historic Dallas Neighborhoods, Homes with this Class | CandysDirt.com

Dallas doesn’t have a great track record of protecting its historic houses and neighborhoods. Development has often meant demolition and it has been a challenge at times to help people see the value of preserving and protecting older structures and areas around the city.

But the tides seem to be shifting. Realtors are on the front lines and can make a huge impact moving forward. 

That’s where the Historic House Specialist designation comes in. A couple of times a year, Metrotex and Preservation Dallas team up to offer a two-day seminar for MCE credit and a certification for Realtors. The event includes lectures from local experts on architectural history and styles of Dallas, the preservation ordinance, property tax incentives, how to research the history of a building, and more. 

I was lucky enough to sit in on the last one in March and I have to sing its praises. The caliber of presenter was unparalleled —I took 42 pages of notes on everything from preserving historic wood windows and spotting a Dilbeck, to researching the history of a building and learning about early Dallas developers. 

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You know how crazy we are over the Dallas “Round House”, commissioned by Dallas businessman and bon vivant Eddie Parker.

While it has never been officially confirmed, Bruce Goff is credited with designing the house because of its similarities to the other homes he has designed in the U.S. The home is now on the market for $1,725,000, be sure to check out our story on it.

Plus there are so many wonderful eccentricities: 24 karat gold dipped ceramic tiles, Hawaiian mahogany, Frankoma tiled glass walls, onyx terrazzo, intricate mosaics and brass inlaid concrete floors. All these elements plus typical 1960s materials that made that era of architecture so great — natural stone, walnut paneling, glass glass and more glass, and bamboo.

The Dallas Round House is still considered one of the most architecturally significant homes in the city and you do not want to miss it!

Tonight, you can benefit our great friends at Preservation Dallas (for a mere $20) and see this city treasure for yourself! 

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

7507 Baxtershire Drive, Dallas, TX 75230

6:00 PM to 7:00 PM

Click here to register and pay: www.eventbrite.com/e/intown-outing-parker-house-tickets-

5314 Mercedes Ave. is currently listed by Scott Jackson of Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate for $575,000.

Ladies and gents, I present to you an elegant slice of M Streets Dallas history. If you’ve always dreamed of a life on Dallas’ historic M Streets, now is your chance. Meet 5314 Mercedes Ave. – a stunning 1920s Tudor currently listed for $575,000 by Scott Jackson with Dave Perry-Miller Real Estate. This darling three-bedroom, two-bathroom Tudor offers all the charm and charisma of a bygone era with a number of thoughtful updates for modern-day life.

Nestled on a sizable 7,797-square-foot lot, you’ll enjoy a fenced lawn with spacious back deck and pergola, while a smattering of mature trees add to the charm. But it’s what is on the inside that will blow you away.

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Rehabilitation of the historic Knights of Pythias building in Deep Ellum is already underway, but developers are asking the City of Dallas to provide tax incentives to make the project more affordable. (Courtesy Photo)

For as long as I can remember, the Knights of Pythias building was a large painted gray mass of Beaux Arts architecture, hulking on the west end of Deep Ellum, boarded up and idle. When the historic rehabilitation began, it was wonderful to see the light gray paint give way to the gorgeous brick and stone underneath, unveiling the true character of this building. 
 
Of course, rehabilitation of historic structures isn’t cheap, and in the fight to maintain Dallas’ character, one of the best tools that cities have at their disposal are historic preservation tax exemptions and credits. While we bemoan the rash of teardowns and our city’s toothless measures to stay their razings, the key is making rehabilitation more economically viable than destroying the historic fabric of our city’s built environment. 
 
That’s why Preservation Dallas has put out the call to support tax exemption for the Knights of Pythias developers, Westdale Properties.
 

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