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Oh, Cliff!

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Yes, yes, the sale price of existing single-family homes is dropping all over the place -- in Dallas, even, for the first time ever. But this morning Investor's Business Daily finds the one place in the DFW where land is going, going and dang near gone: Oak Cliff. As in:

"At $1.50 a gallon, people could afford to make 25-mile-long commutes from (the northern Dallas suburbs of) Plano or Frisco, but at today's prices, Oak Cliff starts to look very attractive," said Alan McDonald, senior managing director of the Incap Fund, a Dallas-based private equity firm. Incap is investing more than $200 million to develop 5,000 residential units on 300 acres inside Oak Cliff's Davis Garden District TIF.

McDonald believes that Oak Cliff's value results from it being ignored for so long. "Instead of 'McMansions' and starter castles so prevalent in North Dallas suburbs, Oak Cliff's housing base consists of elegant older homes that would cost $600,000 were they on the other side of the river," McDonald said. "In Oak Cliff you can buy the same house for $300,000, spend $100,000 remodeling and have a $600,000 house just five minutes away from the city's best restaurants, nightlife and culture."

Also buying a lot of land in Oak Cliff: Jeff West, who's run everything from the Shakespeare Festival of Dallas to the Dallas Theater Center to the Sixth Floor Museum. --Robert Wilonsky

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