Back to the Future

This is the Case Study Home being built at 701 Peavy Road. Better this than a McMansion, but is it 1958 already? We kid.

This morning, a good Friend of Unfair Park alerts us to some new homes being built near his White Rock Lake domicile -- homes, he asks, that might be "the antidote to McMansions?" They're being built by a company called Case Study Homes, which is based in the Republic Center on North St. Paul Street and has its eye on East Dallas: It's constructing three homes on Peavy Road near Hexter Elementary in Lake Highlands, four on Peninsula Drive and one on Kessler Woods Trail, with future sites planned in Forest Hills, Lakewood and Lakeside Hills.

But something about these sleek homes suggests even Schutze might approve: On its Web site, the company insists it's devoted to "developing modernist neighborhoods in the Dallas area" and "continuing a movement that represents the true beginning of post-war, modern residential architecture in the country."

The site says the company's been buying property in East Dallas and Oak Cliff for the past 18 months, "with an emphasis on lots with mature trees around White Rock Lake." Case Study says it will try to build its new homes in groupings of three to six homes per neighborhood, and they'll be constructed to actually look like they're appropriate within the neighborhood's existing context."

"CSH is committed to providing better option for spec home buyers than the typical McMansions that have plagued this area during recent years," it promises, to which our Friend says, in so many words, We'll see. But Case Study Homes are, historically, cherishable investments, and preservationists love them: Last December, The Los Angeles Times ran a piece about original Case Study Homes built for the middle-class in the 1940s and 1950s that sell upwards of $3 million The new ones here will initially go for far less: The 2,700-square-foot home at 701 Peavy Road, which isn't yet built, is on the market for $580,000. Yeah, might as well be $3 million. To some of us, anyway. --Robert Wilonsky