Fort Worth

Developer wants to bring senior home to east Fort Worth neighborhood, residents still skeptical

Developers want to build a multifamily senior living community at 2504 Oakland Blvd. despite some initial reluctance from neighborhood groups.

Saigebrook Development is proposing a 66-unit senior community with an amenity center and courtyard. The site is where the historic Fash Mansion once stood before it burned down in 2011.

Megan Lasch, a consultant for Saigebrook Development, said the site had been identified as one for development because the city of Fort Worth is making concentrated revitalization efforts along the East Lancaster Avenue corridor.

“Meadowbrook is also a very up-and-coming neighborhood,” Lasch said. “We feel like a few small developments could help spur revitalizations.”

Neighborhood residents are wary. When Saigebrook Development first approached the West Meadowbrook Neighborhood Association, members initially were skeptical of a multifamily development.

Fort Worth City Councilwoman Kelly Allen Gray appointed Wanda Conlin, president of the East Fort Worth Business Association, to a committee to work with Saigebrook Development and the plans for the senior living community. The committee’s job was to help iron out the details in the plan that might be objectionable to neighborhood residents.

“My first reaction, of course, was like everyone else who is a part of the East Fort Worth community — skepticism about any multifamily,” said Conlin in an email.

With the committee’s input, Saigebrook Development has made several changes to the plan. Originally, the housing center was supposed to have 80 units, but Saigebrook scaled it back to 66. It was also supposed to be three stories, but the developers changed that to two stories. Saigebrook also plans to add a fence around the property and have a single entrance.

Additionally, the developers commissioned a traffic analysis to see how traffic in the area might be affected by the development.

“On our own good will, we have commissioned a traffic analysis,” Lasch said. “That’s not typically required with a development of this size.”

Saigebrook’s willingness to work with stakeholders from the neighborhood convinced Conlin that the end result will be a boon for the community.

“The senior designation is an attempt to place affordable housing near an area in need of more rooftops to encourage other revitalization projects,” Conlin said. “It does not impact our schools, but adds density that may give an impetus to other developers to look at the area for needed neighborhood services.”

Saigebrook has not completed the zoning process and still has a few more neighbors to convince at its March 28 neighborhood association meeting. However, if the approval process were to go smoothly, the development could break ground in the first quarter of 2020 with construction finishing in 2021.