In the 19th century this area was home to cotton fields. The development of the Winnetka Heights subdivision around 1910 marked the beginnings of Kings Highway. It started with the construction of numerous apartment buildings for the residents awaiting completion of their new homes in Winnetka Heights. Platted as Oak Cliff Annex, the area was designed along the unique diagonal thoroughfare of Kings Highway. During its existence, the trolley stopped at the eastern entrance, where a brick archway once stood, marking the gateway to the neighborhood.
The development did not cease when Winnetka Heights was finished. Many of the original 1910 apartments remain, but it is the diversity of the area that is so appealing. While much of the neighborhood has a 1920s middle class feel with single family Craftsman bungalows, Kings Highway is lined with examples of Tudor, late Queen Anne, Neoclassical and Prairie-style homes. Many of the smaller houses have been restored, but a number of the larger two story homes await creative hands to bring them back to their original splendor.
The Kings Highway Conservation District is the first of its kind in Texas. A group of residents banded together in the mid-1980s to save this historic neighborhood. The District was created, and a specific city-enforceable ordinance was written to direct such topics as zoning, setback, renovation, and general appearance of the exteriors.
The Kings Highway Neighborhood Association concerns itself with code enforcement, cleanups, Crime Watch, and social events. They sponsor a semi-monthly newsletter and meetings as well.
Kings Highway has always enjoyed diversity. Their common bond continues to be a dedication to preserving their heritage and quality of life.
Please visit the Kings Highway Conservation District Website or Wikipedia for more information.
Get a limited edition book about old Oak Cliff
Filled with wonderful pictures of fine historic buildings and street scenes, this book shares stories about the beginnings of this great, iconic area of Dallas.
"The Hidden City - Oak Cliff, Texas"
by Bill Minutaglio, Holly Williams