Renovation effort shows area's potential

the dallas morning news

October 1996

Staff Writer of The Dallas Morning News


There are a number of aging apartment complexes along Gaston Avenue that could qualify as city eyesores.
But none was more obvious than the old Lakewood apartments at 6011 Gaston.

Once the flagship of the 1960s building boom that converted the Old East Dallas avenue into a fleet of luxury apartments, the Lakewood was sinking from neglect. So much so that neighbors nearly succeeded in having the city demolish the building. But the $1.5 million renovation of the old Lakewood into the new 6011 Gaston offers a glimpse of what can happen if the city, developers and neighborhood groups will work together.

Braden Power and his brother, Craig, say they took a chance on restoring the dilapidated apartment complex because of the area's potential. The close proximity of the Swiss Avenue historic district, the Lakewood shopping center and easy access to downtown were all cited as positive reasons to invest in the Gaston property.

With tenants moving into 6011 Gaston this week, the need for a long range development strategy for this
neglected street should be obvious.

City planners and neighborhood representatives have been meeting for more than 18 months to discuss the
kind of zoning and code enforcement needed to restore Gaston's economic viability.

We would urge the city to pick up the pace on these negotiations. The sooner investors know Dallas is committed to turning this street around, the sooner more projects like 6011 Gaston will occur.

Copyright 1996 The Dallas Morning News Company