By Daniel Haase
I have lived in Central Meadowbrook for 30 years, and in West Meadowbrook for 10 years before that. I fell in love with Fort Worth from the moment I saw the skyline in 1975, arriving as a young airman at Carswell Air Force Base, now the Joint Reserve Base, next to Lockheed.
When I was discharged from the service, I didn’t have a job lined up, and when looking at a map of the metroplex, east Fort Worth made a lot of sense for wherever my job took me. My wife and I have been here ever since.
Central Meadowbrook is a mature and increasingly desirable neighborhood full of diversity, charm and friendly people. It is heavily wooded with gentle hills, large lots and leafy streets.
Few neighborhoods in Fort Worth have such diverse housing stock as Central Meadowbrook. No cookie-cutters here. You literally could own a house built in 1920 or 2020 — or any year in between. Many homes are being renovated and given a fresh appearance, bringing new families to discover what the area has to offer. Especially popular are mid-century modern homes, some reflecting influences of architects like Frank Lloyd Wright and Richard Neutra.
When Central Meadowbrook’s first residents arrived early in the 20th century, the area was outside the Fort Worth city limits — for years after, it was dairy farms and open country. A dozen homes built prior to 1920 still exist and include a mix of craftsman style bungalows and large, stately homes, some of historic significance.
The concept of suburban living coincided with Central Meadowbrook’s most dramatic growth period — the 1950s. Streets gained curves, homes gained many modern conveniences like air conditioning and one- or two-car attached garages, and whole blocks of homes were under construction virtually simultaneously. By the end of the 1950s, over half of all homes to be built in Central Meadowbrook were completed. About 70 new homes have been added so far in the 21st century.
Amenities are important to us, just like anywhere. We have seven — yes, seven — public libraries within a five-mile radius. Great recreational opportunities like Tandy Hills Nature Area, Gateway Park, Oakland Lake Park, Quanah Parker Park and Meadowbrook Park Golf Course are nearby. The Trinity River is just to our north, where the Trinity Trails can take you all over the city.
Some may wonder about East Lancaster Avenue, which forms Central Meadowbrook’s southern border and is a major commercial corridor in the city. After many years of decline, the indicators are now pointing to a brighter future for the street. A Public Improvement District became operational in 2020 and has had a positive impact in a short time. A dozen new businesses have opened in the last year, including a large new senior health clinic, Lady and the Pit barbeque with its cult-like following, and — my favorite — a new hardware store. There are also several transportation initiatives in play that have the potential to transform the corridor.
I truly believe my neighborhood is a special place. We look out for each other. We’ve closed cul-de-sacs for block parties, held Christmas gatherings, and even attended a few funerals. I can’t count how many times over the years I’ve had a “street conversation” where I caught up with a neighbor driving by when I was out working in the yard. One of my neighbors shares her latest baking efforts with us from time to time.
There is a real sense of community, and it even feels a little bit like we live out in the country. I wouldn’t live anywhere else.
Total population: 5,485
Female: 53% | Male: 47%
80 and older: 2%
No degree: 21%
High school: 23%
Some college: 28%
Bachelor’s degree: 17%
Click on the link to view the schools’ Texas Education Agency ratings:
Dan Haase is the vice president of the Central Meadowbrook Neighborhood Association and a retired maintenance director from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. He has served on the city’s Building Standards Commission, and currently serves on two water department citizen advisory committees. His passion for helping East Lancaster Avenue earn a fresh start led him to be a part of the petition drive to establish the Public Improvement District. He also gives his time to Meals on Wheels as a driver, finds ways to mentor young leaders with a passion to make a difference in their community, and empowers people to believe they can improve their city.
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