Preservation Austin usually has some pleasant surprises up its sleeve when it comes to its annual home tour, and this year is no exception. The nonprofit dedicated to “Saving the Good Stuff” in Austin’s built environment will focus its 2108 fundraising homes tour on the Cherrywood, Delwood II, and Wilshire Wood—some of the city’s less ostentatious neighborhoods that nevertheless have a rich history as communities for working people and veterans returning from WWII.
The tour, which takes place Saturday, April 28, is titled “Into the Woods.” It will showcase the postwar cottages and midcentury ranch homes of these East Austin neighborhoods, characterized by small vintage homes, big trees, strong communities, and often underappreciated architecture. The tour will showcase home histories and contemporary renovations, but it will also tell the stories of landmarks such as Maplewood Elementary and the adjacent area that generations of Austinites have referred to as “Duplex Nation.”
In the meantime, here are some examples of the stops that will be on the tour (descriptions and photos via Preservation Austin).
↑ The French Place renovation and ADU by architects Rick and Cindy Black have transformed a 1960 ranch for homeowners looking to downsize. A sunlit kitchen-living-dining space connects to an entertainment patio and elegant steel pavilion. Sustainable features include reclaimed pecan floors, native plants, and drip irrigation system.
↑ A 1950 Brookview Road ranch has been lovingly renovated for a family of four. Full of warmth and authentic charm, it features midcentury lines, original hardwood floors, and a vintage Chambers stove. Improvements include a master suite and office addition, sunroom with colorful Mexican tile, and terraced back deck.
These concrete block cottages on Bentwood Road were built in 1947. All are owned by architects who designed their renovations, illustrating a fascinating range of design approaches:
↑ The first was renovated by Ada Corral of Jobe Corral Architects. Over time, projects have included restoring steel windows and parquet floors, elegant kitchen and bathroom renovations, and a gorgeous contemporary living room and bathroom addition for her young family.
↑ The second features restored steel windows, parquet floors, and a stunning living room and master suite designed by Camille Jobe, of Jobe Corral Architects, for her family of four. A modern kitchen connects the old and the new. Contemporary steel details by JobeFabrications add texture throughout.
↑ The last Delwood II house includes a new kitchen, sleek landscaping, and a striking new detached studio by Moontower Design Build to add space for this growing family. The original tub, fireplace, and steel windows remain.
↑ This Ardenwood Road showplace, built in 1952, stands atop a hill with lush native landscaping. It was the longtime home of a renowned University of Texas zoologist. The current owner saved the property from demolition with a beautiful rehab, including an original two-sided fireplace and new Palm Springs-style swimming pool.
↑ On Lullwood Road, a 1957 ranch has a sweeping angled roof and expansive windows with stunning views of the neighborhood below. The owner’s vintage furnishings, art, and light fixtures complement its retro aesthetic, including a sunken tub with original tile.
Tour headquarters will be at another historic site: the 1943 Browning Hangar in the Mueller neighborhood. Bike Austin will provide bike racks and a route for cyclists. You can learn more about the tour and tickets at Preservation Austin’s website.