Allandale, Austin, Texas

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Allandale, Austin, Texas is a neighborhood in North Central Austin, in the U.S. State of Texas.The neighborhood is known for its large lots, mature trees and central location.

The Allandale neighborhood boundaries are Burnet Road, Brentwood and Crestview neighborhoods to the East. Mopac Expressway and the Northwest Hills neighborhood make up the Western Boundary. Hancock Drive and the Rosedale neighborhood border to the South, and to the North, West Anderson Lane North Shoal Creek neighborhood. The neighborhood is bisected by Shoal Creek Blvd, and its namesake the perennial Shoal Creek.

Allandale history[edit]

The area now considered the Allandale neighborhood was originally part of an 1841 land grant to George W. Davis, by the President of the Republic of Texas Mirabeau B Lamar for his service in the Battle of San Jacinto. Over the years, Davis (and his descendants) sold most of the 3,154 acres he was granted; however, a few of his descendants still live in the area, and the Davis family cemetery, a Texas Historical Cemetery, can be found within the borders of Allandale. [1] A portion of the lands that the Davis family sold ended up being part of Frank Richcreek’s family farm, the Kirchner dairy farm until and smattering of smaller neighborhoods that were built in the 1930s. This all changed in 1946 when W. Murray Graham, known as the "dean of the Austin real estate profession” (he was instrumental in developing the Enfield, Tarrytown, and Bryker Woods neighborhoods) started platting the original sections of the Allandale neighborhood, soon followed by Allandale Oaks in 1951. Other sections of Allandale were platted by various other developers, including Allandale Terrace, Allandale Park and Allandale West.

  • Allandale West

In 1958, Allandale West (the area north of Northland, South of Gullett Elementary School between the Union Pacific railroad tracks and Shoal Creek) was developed by Mr. W. H. Bullard (Bill). A long time neighborhood resident, John Miller was a friend of Mr. Bullard and has insight on the naming of some of the street names in Allandale West.

  1. Bullard (Dr)- Named after Mr. Bullard.
  2. Clarice (Ct)- A long time employee of Mr. Bullard’s.
  3. Carleen (Dr)- The wife of the project’s civil engineer.
  4. Sarah (Ct)- Mr. Bullard's secretary.
  5. Gena (Ct)- Daughter of Mr. Bullard’s secretary, Sarah.
  6. Janey (Dr)- Daughter of Mr. Bullard’s secretary, Sarah.
  7. Louise (Ln)- Mr. Bullard’s mother and also his daughter’s name.
  8. Marilyn (Dr)- Mr. Bullard’s law partner’s wife.
  9. Susie (Ct)- A long time Austin Club employee.
  10. Rickey (Dr)- Named after Rickey Key, a close friend of Mr. Bullard.
  11. Fairlane (Dr)- Named after Mr. Bullard’s Ford Fairlane automobile.
  12. Treadwell (Blvd)- Named by a local optometrist.
  • 1981 Flood

On Memorial Day 1981, 11 inches of rain fell in three hours in some places in Austin. At the height of the storm around midnight, Shoal Creek, which normally flows at 90 gallons a minute was raging at 6.55 million gallons per minute. By morning, 13 people were dead, hundreds of homes were destroyed and Shoal Creek was clogged with dozens of new cars that had washed into the creek from a nearby dealership.[2]

  • Plesiosaur Fossil Find

In 1991, paleontologist excavated plesiosaur fossils in Shoal Creek near Greenlawn Parkway and Shoal Creek Blvd. A replica of the fossil can be found by Great Northern Dam.

Architecture[edit]

Most of the homes in Allandale are ranch style slab on grade homes. However, East of Shoal Creek Blvd, and South of Greenlawn Pkwy there are pockets of mid-century modern houses intermixed with the more traditional ranch style homes.

  • Air Conditioner Village

A portion of Allandale, roughly bounded by Twin Oaks Dr to the South, Addison Ave to the North, Daugherty St to the East and Nasco Dr to the North played a unique role in proving that indoor air conditioning could be affordable and feasible in middle class homes. The experimental Air Conditioned Village sponsored by the National Association of Home Builders and studied by scientist at not only the University of Texas, but the US Department of Energy, opened in 1954 to assess the effects of air-conditioning on middle class residential design. Some of the development's original 22 homes are still standing and tell a fascinating story about how this small section of the Allandale played a pivotal role in bringing indoor air conditioning to the middle class home.[3]

Neighborhood traditions[edit]

  • 4th of July Parade

In 1960, Rv. John Lovett had the idea of a neighborhood parade. He was joined in organizing the first Allandale parade by the Frank Tuttles and another family or two. The 4th of July parade has been a neighborhood tradition ever since. [4]

  • Candy Canes-The Holiday Tradition
    • Early History

In the early 1960s, the neighborhood began a unique project, the lighted Christmas candy canes. Often thought of as a gift from the developers to those that purchased houses around Christmas, in reality the tradition was started by several of the neighborhood men walked Carleen and took orders, about $2.50 per cane or $5.00 for a cane and floodlight. Stovepipes were assembled in various garages, and then hung on a long wire for painting. The addition of a few yards of wide red plastic ribbon and a bow completed each cane. The work crew even installed the canes to insure a uniform angle and spacing. As new streets were opened, the new neighbors were encouraged to join the candy cane project. Within two years virtually every house had one or two lighted canes.[5]

  1. Modern History

In 1994 Cub Scout Pack 55 brought back the tradition of the Candy Canes as a fund raiser.

  • Neighborhood Wide Garage Sale

In 2006 a neighborhood wide garage sale was established. The purpose of the garage sale is to encourage neighbors to engage with each other, if the participants choose to do so the Neighborhood Associations collects the excess and donates it to a local charity.

Neighborhood shopping[edit]

Allandale is bound on it Eastern boundary by Burnet Road. Burnet Road is known for its quirky locally owned shops. However, lately the local shops are being replace by boutique stores, bars and restaurants.
* Graham's Allandale Village Opened at Burnet and Allandale Roads in 1950, at the time it was the largest suburban shopping center in town. It was meant to serve not just Allandale residents, but those living in the wider area in Crestview, Brentwood, Highland Park, Rosedale, and beyond.
* Northcross Mall Northcross Mall was an indoor mall that opened in 1975 on the corner of Burnet Rd. & Anderson Ln., and was last renovated in 1989. It had 1,551 parking spaces, a food court with 100 seats and what is thought to be Austin's first indoor ice skating rink. The mall covered an area of 315,792 square feet and had about 50 stores.

Cemeteries[edit]

  • Historic Davis Cemetery

Davis Cemetery, located on Vine St between Twin Oaks and Cavileer Ave, was the family cemetery of George W. Davis, who was granted the surrounding land in 1841 for his service in The Battle of San Jacinto. It was dedicated as a historic cemetery on March 10, 2000. It contains about 100 graves ranging from the mid 1800’s to 1918. [6][7]

  • Austin Memorial Cemetery

Opened in 1927, Austin Cemetery spans an area greater than 100 acres with over 100,000 single graves.[8]

Neighborhood activism[edit]

The Allandale Neighborhood Association(ANA) was organized in October 1973 as a 501C4 and is the 28th and largest neighborhood group in Austin. It is known for its civic activism and community engagement. ANA may be the neighborhood group with the biggest boundaries, encompassing 3,500 homes in an area roughly bounded by Anderson Lane to the North, Burnet Road to the East, 45th Street to the South, and MoPac Expressway to the West. ANA works to promote and preserve the quality of life, the integrity, the safety, the residential character, and the property values of the neighborhood. It monitors zoning proposals, legislative issues, and City Council decisions regarding the streets, park, creek, and other concerns of the area. It sponsors candidate forums for the City Council, the school board, and other public offices when appropriate to provide information to the public. A select list of the achievements are outlined below:

  1. 1973 Halted the proposed extension of Far West Blvd. through Northwest Park. This effort prevented the neighborhood from being divided by a major roadway.
  2. 1974 Halted the proposed construction of a waste water line in the creek bed of Shoal Creek. It was relocated to run down Shoal Creek Blvd.
  3. 1975 Halted the proposed extension of Great Northern Blvd. from RM 2222 to Anderson Lane. This effort prevented the creation of an access road cutting through a residential area and endangering the safety of residents.
  4. 1975-1976 Initiated a neighborhood wide Neighborhood Watch programs.
  5. 1971-1984 Stopped the Allandale Baptist Church’s (now GT church) controversial plan to demolish all the houses between Nasco Dr and Burnet Rd from Northland Dr and Allandale Rd.
  6. 1981 Achieved a zoning rollback for 99% of all single-family residences within the neighborhood to permanent "SF-2, Single Family Residence." This was the largest zoning rollback in the city.
  7. 1981 Coordinated the Allandale portion of the "Hike and Bike Trail" along Shoal Creek Blvd.
  8. November 1985 Started hand publication and hand deliveries of the "Allandale Newsletter".
  9. June 1993 Started mailing newsletters to all of Allandale's 3,500 homes.
  10. June 1998 Worked with the Union Pacific Railroad, with the help of U.S. House of Representative’s Lloyd Doggett's office, to prohibit prolonged idling of unmanned or staffed engines, along the western boundary of the neighborhood.
  11. January 2001 Endorsed the plan to shrink Shoal Creek Boulevard from four lanes to two lanes, with shared biking and parking lanes on both sides of the street. #2006 Established a neighborhood-wide garage sale.
  12. 2006 Allandale Neighborhood News is distributed quarterly.
  13. 2006 Added a Spring ANA general meeting

Infrastructure[edit]

  • Bus Transportation

Allandale has several Capital Metropolitan Transportation Authority bus lines that service the neighborhood. A few examples are 3, 5, 19, 320, 491, and Austin’s second Capital MetroRapid the 803.

  • Highway

Burnet Rd is connected to US Highway 183 on the North, RM 2222 connects to Interstate Highway 35 on the East and Allandale Rd/Northland Dr connect to Mopac Expressway on the West.

  • Railroad

Union Pacific Railroad has freight tracks that run on the West Side of the neighborhood, between the neighborhood and Mopac Expressway. These tracks consist single track as well as a siding rail.

Demographics[edit]

According to the 2013 American Community Survey, the median age for Allandale is 37.8 years, and the median household income is $57,429. 45% of the residents are married, and 54% are single. 49% are male and 51% are female. Approximately 77% of the neighborhood’s households have no one under the age of 18 living there. 12% of the population is over the age of 65. Among people over age 25, approximately 52% have a bachelor's degree or higher . Just over 20% of the neighborhood's total population are Hispanic American or Latino, while 72% of Allandale’s population are White, 2.4% are Asian, and 2.1% are Black or African American.

Recreation[edit]

'Beverly S. Sheffield Northwest District Park is located at 7000 Ardath St Austin TX 78757, and resides in the heart of Allandale. One of the first recorded used of the park was as an old limestone quarry that supplied limestone for the 1853 Texas Capital Building.[9] The park which covers 31 acres contains:

  • 4 Barbecue Pits
  • 8 Baseball Fields
  • 1 Basketball Courts
  • 2 Fishing Piers
  • 47 Picnic Tables
  • 3 Playgrounds
  • Olympic Sized Swimming Pools
  • 4 Tennis Courts
  • 1 Volleyball Courts
  • 1 pond
  • Numerous walking and hiking trails

Northwest Park swimming pool consists of a kiddie pool, 50 meter lap lanes, a high dive diving board and 12 foot deep diving well. [10] [11]

  • Gullett Elementary Park and Playground

Gullett Elementary on Treadwell Boulevard opened in 1956[12], Gullett Playground followed in 1962. It has seven ball fields, a sixth of a mile mile running track and three playgrounds.

  • Lucy Read Elementary School Park

Lucy Read has three playgrounds, a covered basketball court and two soccer fields.

  • Northwest Rec Center

Northwest Recreation Center located at 2913 Northland Dr, Austin, TX 78757 opened in 1979 and was named for the area of town for which it is located. The center contains: full court gymnasium, fitness studio, arts and crafts room, meeting room, multi-purpose room, teen room and a lobby with free wifi, ping pong, chess and foosball. Located on the grounds are: playscape, large grassy field, sand volleyball court, disc golf basket, horseshoe pit, and picnic tables.[13]

Houses of worship[edit]

Neighborhood churches along Allandale Road included

  • St. John's United Methodist, opened in 1949 with a school and sanctuary dating to 1952 and 1957.
  • Allandale Baptist (now GT Austin), and opened in 1951 with a modernist sanctuary built in 1970.

Education[edit]

Public schools-Allandale is located in the Austin Independent School District.

  • Gullett Elementary School

Gullett Elementary on Treadwell Boulevard opened in 1956[14]

Lamar Middle School opened on Burnet Road in 1955; its design by Kuehne, Brooks, and Barr was exhibited nationally and internationally

McCallum, the second oldest high school in the Austin Independent School District, opened in 1953 to relieve growth in north and northwest Austin. Named after AISD's first high school superintendent, A.N. McCallum.

References[edit]

Coordinates: 30°20′31″N 97°44′38″W / 30.342°N 97.744°W / 30.342; -97.744