Swiss Avenue is located in East Dallas and was originally developed in 1905 by Collett and R.S. Munger. The Mungers envisioned creating a neighborhood in close proximity to downtown Dallas. The two wanted an avenue close to the downtown area so that the residents could have some involvement in urban life. The street is an elegant historical district that is approximately 2.5 miles long. Swiss Avenue has so much historic value that it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places back in March, 1974. There are 200 preserved and restored homes on Swiss Avenue that range in many styles.
The main styles of homes on Swiss Avenue are Mediterranean, Spanish, Georgian, Prairie, Craftsman, Neoclassical, Tudor, Colonial Revival, and Italian Renaissance. Colonial revival homes are typically brick or wood, Neoclassical homes have grand front porches that are supported by white columns, and Spanish homes can easily be identified by the white stucco walls, arches, and courtyards. One thing that all of the homes on Swiss Avenue have in common is their beautiful symmetry, balance, and elegance.
The historical homes in the area have transformed Swiss Avenue into a popular tourist destination. Tourists are attracted to the area to see some of the finest 20th century architecture in the city. Tourists should be aware that they are not allowed to enter the historical homes in the area - they are only allowed to view them. Swiss Avenue is considered to contain some of the most distinguished early 20th century homes in the Southwest. The entire Swiss Avenue Historic District expands beyond Swiss Avenue and includes Bryan Parkway, La Vista Avenue, Live Oak Street, and Bryan Street. The homes that are for sell in the prestigious area easily exceed values of one million dollars due their historical significance.
There are two noteworthy blocks on Swiss Avenue. The blocks are named after the original settlers who purchased the land and begin to develop families and communities there. Wilson Block is the first street of note. Wilson block is named after Henrietta Frichot Wilson who was the niece of the Swiss natives who originally owned the territory. The second block is the Beilharz Block. The historical Beilharz block is named after Theodore Beilharz, the original builder of the structures on the block. The Beilharz block was built between 1887 and 1901. It was restored by the Meadows Foundation in 1984.
Swiss Avenue has its own neighborhood watch team called The Swiss Avenue Alliance Against Crime. The crime-watching team was created in 1990 and is a non-for-profit organization. Swiss Avenue Alliance Against Crime keeps the area safe by hiring off duty Dallas police officers to patrol the neighborhood in marked, computer-equipped squad cars. The officers respond to 911 calls, ticket speeders, rescue lost pets, and stop any offenses on Swiss Avenue. Residents contribute $50.00 per month in order to pay for the Dallas police officers and so far the presence of police has decreased the amount of crime on Swiss Avenue.
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