Correction: This story has been updated to reflect that the ELP is a group of professionals, not students. Regret and apologies for that error.
The Dreyfuss Club on the east side of the water was built in the 30s and once served as a private clubhouse for the employees of Sol Dreyfuss, a prominent Dallas clothing retailer and owner of the Dallas Baseball Club.
The City of Dallas bought the property after WWII, and, like the building at Winfrey Point, Dreyfuss was rented as a venue for parties, weddings and other functions.
But early early Monday, October 23, 2006 it burned to the ground.
Today members of the American Institute of Architects Dallas’ Emerging Leaders Program, the Dallas Park and Recreation Department and White Rock Lake Conservancy are working together to rebuild the club.
A press release from the collaborative says they aim to see that the replacement is designed with the park and its history in mind.
The White Rock Lake Conservancy has been in discussions with the Park Department about the Dreyfuss Club rebuild for years, according to the press release.
In fact, The Advocate reported in 2010 that the Conservancy was formed in direct response to the Dreyfuss Club fire.
“Right after the fire, City Councilman Sheffield Kadane said it concerned him that no funds were available to replace a building as significant to our neighborhood as the Dreyfuss Club. So Kadane, along with former City Councilman Gary Griffith and others, started organizing,” we reported. In 2010 we also quoted Griffith saying he was in talks with an architect and had a $3 million estimate on the rebuild. The Park Department at the time listed the Dreyfuss Club as No. 4 on its top-10 priorities for White Rock Lake. (Note, there is a rendering of a “new Dreyfuss Club” in the story I just referred to. People did not like that rendering and it swiftly disappeared to all except us.)
ELP is an invitation-only program that includes both licensed architects and architectural designers with at least five years of experience in the profession.
“When ELP approached the White Rock Lake Conservancy with the desire to design a building replacement that is in keeping with the history of the original building but with modern amenities inside it seemed like the perfect partnership,” notes the Conservancy in its news release.
The Dreyfuss Club project will be a vital opportunity for these young people to “apply classroom knowledge to the benefit of our community,” they add.
There is no doubt that members of the neighboring community will have something to say about the design and rebuild of The Dreyfuss Club.
To that end, the involved organizations are hosting a neighborhood input meeting May 17 at Winfrey Point. It begins at 6 p.m. and everyone’s invited.
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