Neighborhoods Old Braeswood
The introduction of “Braeswood,” a history published by the Old Braeswood Civic Club, begins:
“Braeswood began as a model 1920s garden subdivision, what the real estate historian Christopher Gray describes as a “country club district,” albeit, in this instance, without the country club. It was planned in 1927 and 1928 for the banker and developer George F. Howard by Hare and Hare, the Kansas City landscape architects responsible for such garden suburbs as the prototypal Country Club District in Kansas City and Highland Park West in Dallas. Braeswood was to be the South End’s response to the upstart River Oaks”… with “amply sized ‘country houses’ designed in the eclectic architectural styles so popular in the 1920s.”
After a promising start, the Braeswood Corporation was rocked by the stock market crash of 1929 and dissolved within a few years. The original tract was divided into four sections owned by different individuals. Ultimately completed over a twenty-five year period, Old Braeswood represents a unique visual evolution of Houston’s changing residential patterns, from stately Tudor and Colonial Revivals to architecturally significant California Ranch styles to recently constructed townhouses.
One of Old Braeswood’s most famous residents was legendary wildcatter Glenn McCarthy, whose 18-acre estate on Kelving, Glennlee, was the second most expensive house built in Houston during the 1930s.
Today officially known as Old Braeswood, the subdivision is bounded by Holcombe Boulevard on the north, Brays Bayou on the east, N. Braeswood Boulevard on the south, and Kirby Drive on the west. Served by the Old Braeswood Property Owners’ Association, the area consists of 314 private residences; Braeswood Park, property of the City of Houston Parks and Recreation Department; and two traffic triangles owned by the City Traffic and Transportation Department. Old Braeswood POA encourages area development that retains the integrity of the neighborhood.
Lots in Old Braeswood are the largest among the surrounding neighborhoods and their desirability has insured consistent increases home values. In 2006, prices for single-family homes range upwards from the mid-$400,000s to well over $1,000,000. Townhouses sell in the low– to mid– $300,000s.
Old Braeswood offers a commute of mere minutes to the world renowned Texas Medical Center and to Rice University, and is within easy distance of the Rice Village, site of some of Houston’s finest shopping and dining.
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