LRK’s McKenzie: 22-story, 183-units ranging from 998 to 2,699 square feet

Don’t know about you, but I am doing a big huge about face when it comes to renting. 

First of all, tax changes. Second of all, tax changes: we pay more in property taxes, and cannot deduct them or most of the mortgage interest, so why, at a certain point in your lives when you have built all the equity you can, are you KILLING yourself keeping up a house?

One honest answer is that, even with 3,500 apartments under construction in Dallas, I had never seen a Dallas apartment where I might want to live.

Until I saw The McKenzie.

The granite in most “luxury” apartments is so thin a good sneeze might crack it. There is never enough storage. The bathrooms are cramped, the closets have minimal shelving, and the “common” areas never look like you could really hunker down with a book and a decent glass of wine.

Until I saw The McKenzie.

The amenities in this building are overwhelming and, dare I say, almost better than home. My home anyhow. I don’t have 24/7 valet and concierge service, I’d love it.

The McKenzie is the baby of StreetLight Residential’s Doug Chesnut, founding partner. He was an early believer in bringing true luxury leasing to Dallas, and the McKenzie, named after his wife’s family, is his crowning glory:

“These residents are not concerned about rent but about the quality of the units and the services. Our average renter is coming out of a large home, in their late 50s and 60s, and many have second homes or ranches where they spend a lot of time. They want the amenities, but on a lock and leave basis.”

And rent is not so much of an issue starting at $3,500 a month. For many people, that is their property tax payment. Residents still get access to a pool deck with views of downtown, a full fitness center, multiple private lounges, a library, entertaining kitchen, a private resident entertaining area/bar, and several outdoor seating areas. There is even a boardroom and private walled garden. John Hawkins of Hawkins Welwood Homes finished out the stunning amenity areas, and John built half of the resident’s homes in Preston Hollow. So everyone tells me they feel right at home.

But seeing is believing. We want to show you the interiors, the Board room, the Salon, the Founders Room, the entertainment kitchen, the pool deck and outdoor garden and all…

The Katy at Victory Park facing down the opening edge of the Katy Trail

From the American Airlines Center and before even turning the corner and passing over the Tollway, the Katy Trail is lined with new apartment buildings towering over it.  From Victory Place, Camden Victory Park, The Alexan, and the latest — Magnolia Station and The Katy at Victory Park — walking at this end of the trail is something less than peaceful. Bleu Ciel will almost complete the curtain.  I’m pretty sure I can hold my breath long enough to see Little Mexico Village and the Magnolia condos fall to development to completely encase this end of the trail.

Of course these apartments have the manufactured hipster vibe residents have self-deluded themselves into thinking they possess.  Magnolia Station talks about apartments that evoke a “Modern Spirit” or “Vintage Soul” while The Katy at Victory Park harkens for residents who “live with intention,” whose “best friend” is their pet, and who want to “live inspired on the trail.”

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Photo: StreetLights

The Case Building will be the first residential highrise in Deep Ellum. Photo: StreetLights

People have been calling Deep Ellum home since the late 1800s, and the historic district in downtown Dallas is entering a new era with its first residential highrise.

The 17-story, 337-unit Case Building will be the largest new real estate project ever built in Deep Ellum, located near Hall and Main streets, just south of Baylor Medical Center. Dallas-based Westdale Properties and StreetLights Residential are teaming up to develop the property.

“Deep Ellum is known for its rich art and music scene. The ability for residents to walk or bike to local galleries, music venues, restaurants, and shops fits well with Streetlights’ vision of a neighborhood-friendly urban development,” said StreetLights CEO Doug Chesnut in a statement. “The population in this area continues to grow, and StreetLights is excited to provide a building inspired by the architecture and style of Deep Ellum for this expanding community.”

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