Luxury Homes and Real Estate - Sotheby’s International Realty

Houston, Texas

Shepherd Park Plaza, Candlelight Plaza, Oak Forest

Houston’s near northwest is home to charming vintage neighborhoods, three of which are Oak Forest, Shepherd Park Plaza, and Candlelight Plaza. The area is bounded loosely by 43rd Street on the south, Pinemont on the north, N. Shepherd on the east and T. C. Jester on the west. Ella Blvd. runs roughly north/south through the middle of the area.

Oak Forest was developed west of Ella Blvd. by Houston real estate magnate Frank Sharp, and was Houston’s largest subdivision until Sharp’s namesake neighborhood, Sharpstown, was completed. Sharp’s Oak Forest Realty Corporation divided Oak Forest into 17 sections, with sufficient acreage set aside for churches, commercial development, and four parks - T.C. Jester, Candlelight, American Legion and Oak Forest Park. After annexation by the City of Houston in the late 1940s, the original Oak Forest Elementary was built in1951, followed by Black Junior High School in 1958 and Waltrip High School about 1961. Stevens Elementary was added in later years. Today, Oak Forest is experiencing a rebirth as original homes are being updated and significant numbers of new homes are being built. Home prices in Oak Forest today range from less than $100,000 into the $300,000s for original homes; new-construction home prices range from near $400,000 into the $700,000s.

East of Ella Blvd., Shepherd Park Plaza and Candlelight Plaza were developed in the 1960 and 1970s. The two neighborhoods are contiguous and often participate jointly in area activities and projects. Prior to residential development, the area was predominantly truck farms whose produce filled the stalls at the nearby Farmers Market on Airline Blvd. Many current residents grew up in the adjoining neighborhoods and have returned to raise their families, giving the neighborhood continuity and inter-connection.

Shepherd Park Plaza has a very active civic club, garden club, and the Plaza Moms club. Area public schools include Durham Elementary and Oak Forest Elementary schools, Black Middle School, and Waltrip and Scarborough high schools. Area private schools include St. Ambrose Catholic School, St. Rose of Lima Catholic School, St Pius X High School, and Lutheran High North. Oak Forest Elementary School offers a Vanguard Program for qualified students. Original homes in both neighborhoods are in demand and there is an increase in renovation and updating of original structures. Home prices range from $200,000 into the $400,000s.