Both oppose development because of it being gated. One wants, one doesn’t.

Every zoning case initiates the sending of ballots to every property owner within 500 feet of the proposal. The list of property owners is supplied by the city, which use the list to mail ballots. Since the documents in a zoning case are public record, developers and their representatives often secure the list to educate and influence as well as to secure feedback on their project.

It’s a delicate dance where opposition might be turned into support for a project. As I wrote previously, response rates for these ballots are famously low. There are times when the zoning request is so tiny, it would only matter to the city – in which case there’s barely a return. In more controversial cases where opposition is high and well-organized, the returns are much higher.

All this balloting matters for several reasons. Obviously, the City Plan Commission and City Council want to know what the immediate neighbors, who will be impacted most, think. They also want to understand the basis for their opposition and whether there are common, valid themes. If a vast majority of respondents hate one thing, and it’s a changeable and bad thing, the city can use their powers to make it work.


In our continuing Dallas City Council election coverage (ha!), let’s take a look at the third of three precincts won by Laura Miller (and its adjacent precinct tie).

Miller ran her campaign on an anti-development platform that resulted in her winning just three precincts where redevelopment cases lit a certain NIMBY fire. The first two were easy to understand for readers as they involved the extensively covered Preston Center and the Pink Wall’s PD-15.

The third development case was highlighted by Candy back in April and involved the redevelopment of the former Mi Escualita Preschool on Webb Chapel just north of Walnut Hill by David Weekley Homes (see map above). At the time it was part of Miller’s campaign fodder, but the election’s over and it’s time to look a little deeper and talk about today.


3409 Webb Garden Front

We just posted yesterday about what homebuyers are looking for according to the National Association of Realtors’ 2013 Homebuyer Survey. They want garages, fireplaces, backyards, and central air (which is a no-brainer for Texans!). Well, if you think you need to head north to the suburbs to get everything you want, just check out this great traditional in Walnut Gardens.

3409 Webb Garden Office

Situated north of Walnut Hill and east of Webb Chapel, this fantastic little enclave has tons of great homes that are being updated and loved, thanks to a great location and decent lot sizes. At 3409 Webb Garden Drive you get a completely updated home with vaulted ceilings, designer paint, gorgeous floors, and a two-car garage.

3409 Webb Garden Dining

With four bedrooms, three bathrooms, and more than 2,400 square feet, you get all the size and amenities that the suburbs offer without having to drive all over creation to get to the office. This home is on a corner lot, too, which means more room to garden and spread out. It’s listed by Susan Melnick of Virginia Cook Realtors for $285,000.

3409 Webb Garden Living

The kitchen features granite counters and a travertine backsplash that complement the gorgeous cabinets. I love the cool pendant light fixtures above the breakfast bar. It’s a spacious kitchen, with a huge eat-in area next to a bay window. Of course, you’ll find stainless steel appliances and upgraded fixtures in the kitchen, too.

3409 Webb Garden Kitchen

The master bedroom is a decent size at 16 x 14, but I’m more concerned about that door and where it leads. Is there a patio? Does it lead to the backyard? The listing info doesn’t tell you, and me, personally I would prefer to not have a door so darn close to my bed.

3409 Webb Garden Master

The master bath is completely updated with a granite vanity and stone-and-glass tile shower with a frameless glass surround. The fixures, which include a waterfall and directional shower, as well as double sinks, are all in oil-rubbed bronze. It’s pretty typical of what you see in updated masters today. Considering that there are two other full baths, I don’t think I will miss having a bathtub in the master.

3409 Webb Garden Master Bath

The backyard, well, it’s perfect for a small playset for a couple of kids to run around. There’s a few areas for a flower bed if that’s more you’re speed, and I really like the brick half-wall that separates the rest of the yard from the tile patio.

3409 Webb Garden Backyard

So what do you think. Is this a good value?