HISTORY

Merriman Park Estates started after the end of World War II. The city of Dallas extended Skillman Avenue from Mockingbird north to Northwest Highway and northeast to join with Forest Lane. This opened up hundreds of acres to become farmland. Two farms cropped up split by a divided two lane road (what is currently Colfax), one owned by the Merrimans and the other owned by the Murdochs. A developer by the name of Hal McGraw started developing the land north of Northwest Highway on each side of Skillman and acquired the Merriman land in 1940.

 

He then opened Merriman Park on the south side of Skillman in 1956 (the current neighborhood behind Jakes). In December 1956, Andrew and Anna Freed, became the first residents of MPE. A year later in 1957 Merriman Park Estates opened with larger lots, which is where the word "estates" comes from. The area became popular for picnics, racing and outdoor activities. Louise and Frank Hicks hosted the first MPE resident Christmas party in 1957 and in March 1958, the MPE Club, Inc. was formed by the 12 original families. Two years later, the first issue of the Estater was published.

 

In September of 1960, all but 10 lots in Merriman Park Estates were completed and in 1967, Hal McGraw and Associates acquired the Murdoch farm for further development. In Nov 1975, Hal McGraw began construction on 2 new streets, Claybrook and Winedale. Shortly thereafter RISD purchased the nine acres at the corner of Greenville and Walnut Hill for a future elementary school (now known as Merriman Park Elementary).  In March 1982, one of the original residents, R.B. Brooks dies, and in March 1986, the Dallas Parks department agrees to name the park on Merriman Parkway in honor of R.B. Brooks.

 

Between 1986 and 1996 Merriman Park Estates becomes home to many families enjoying the local elementary school and proximity to area attractions and then in October 1996, the Volunteers in Patrol is organized with 35 volunteers.  Three years later, in September 1999, the installation of playground equipment at R.B. Brooks Park is completed.  At the turn of the millennium the internet was just beginning and new resident Ric Moseley wanted to make sure MPE had a website so in March 2000, he created and hosted the first neighborhood website.  MPE had a website before it had street sign toppers…but in April 2001 those were installed. Three years later, the MPE Club added officer John McGuire as neighborhood patrol which he maintained until he retired from the Dallas Police Department in 2015.  Then in May 2006, Forbes magazine lists the 75231 zip code as one of the areas with highest home values between 2003 and 2005.

 

The long-awaited Town Center project just east of MPE gets underway with a ground breaking ceremony held by Prescott Realty in November 2007. Several months later, the MPE Club approves replacing two apartment units and in December 2010, the Lake Highlands DART station opens to help extend the DART blue line. In January 2013, the first phase of the Town Center project begins with construction of a parking garage and apartments units (Haven Lake Highlands) set to be completed by 2014.  Sure enough, in April 2014, Haven Lake Highlands, an upscale apartment complex, opens and in November 2014, the NorthRock Lake Highlands apartments opens just south of Haven.  The first tenant in the Lake Highlands Town Center becomes Artistik Edge who moved into one of the retail spaces below Haven in August 2015. 

 

And thus, the area surrounding Merriman Park Estates begins to develop, recreating itself and bringing health and vibrancy back into the area.