Property rights battle in Dallas



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Posted on December 9, 2012 at 11:41 PM

Belmont Property Rights Battle location

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DALLAS - Brittany Bailey and her husband are building a new home in Belmont, the bastion of historic preservation in east Dallas.

"We designed a beautiful prairie style home," said Bailey. 

However, there are no plans yet for a house warming.  Instead the couple is going door to door trying to thaw a rather chilly reception to their arrival in the neighborhood.

"We are not trying to make war in the neighborhood,” Bailey said. “We actually plan to live here and raise a family here."

Bailey is circulating a petition to get neighborhood support for her home blueprint.

The city has already signed off on it, but the design is being appealed by the Belmont Addition Conservation District. Some in the neighborhood say a below ground garage that’s planned for the property makes the entire home a three story structure, which is outlawed. 

The group has declined to publicly comment, but Bailey is talking because she feels it amounts to a self appointed property police force bullying owners over aesthetics that have already been granted official approval.

"I strongly believe we have rights to build on our property," Bailey said.

As the two sides have built their case, Bailey and her husband have suspended building their home until the city makes a final ruling.  A civic board will hear the case Monday afternoon.