“Country Club Estates,” they called it. A 1,100-acre piece of land three miles west of Houston’s downtown. The Hogg brothers and Hugh Potter saw a planned residential park, a haven for affluent homeowners in a city of 250,000 people where zoning was a pie-in-the-sky idea.
A model of urban planning, the new community would have wide, winding streets intersected by only three cross-streets. There would be parks and cul-de-sacs, and all the utility wires would be laid underground. That was in 1924!
In July, ground was broken on River Oaks Boulevard, the first street in the new subdivision. At the north end was, and still is--the River Oaks Country Club. At the other end, across Westheimer, Lamar High School was built in 1937. Jokesters were fond of saying that River Oaks Boulevard was the only street anywhere with two country clubs--one at each end!
River Oaks, once just a muddy road, would become Houston’s premier residential neighborhood, home of the rich and famous.
But in 1924, property on that dirt road on the outskirts of the city was a hard sell.