Oak Cliff is one of Dallas’ older established neighborhoods, formerly a separate town in Dallas County that was annexed to the city in 1903. It sits southwest of the Trinity River, near the Central Business District of Downtown Dallas, and is bordered by I-30 to the north, Loop 12 to the west, I-35 to the east, and I-20 to the south. Oak Cliff is subdivided into North, South, East, and West Oak Cliff, and Southwest/Redbird, with a total population nearing 300,000.
Originally built to be an elite residential area, Oak Cliff features turn-of-the-century and mid-20th-century homes, and has since become a working and middle-class neighborhood.
Oak Cliff was the childhood home of Stevie Ray and Jimmie Vaughan, and is also famously known as the site of Lee Harvey Oswald’s arrest at the Texas Theatre. It is a sprawling area with dozens of smaller sub-neighborhoods and offers a variety of parks, nature preserves, residential areas, views of Downtown Dallas, and indie arts and culture scenes such as those found in the Bishop Arts District.
Oak Cliff Office Space | Lease and Data Trends
Dallas-Fort Worth has quickly become one of the most in-demand office markets in the country. Even with its rapidly rising profile and population, the cost of doing business is still lower than in the coastal cities. Plus, in Texas, space abounds: for large, single-tenant, build-to-suit corporate campuses, and for plenty of new multi-tenant space as well.
Low unemployment has created competition for talent, which has carried over into the office space market. In the second half of 2018, leasing activity of Class A office space significantly outpaced Class B absorption and rental rates.
According to commercial real estate lease data from 2018, there nearly 40 million square feet of office inventory available in the greater Dallas Central Business District, with more than one million additional square feet (all Class A assets) currently under construction. Class A space accounts for just over 32 million square feet of existing inventory with an average asking rent of just over $32 per square foot. Class B office space makes up the remaining seven million square feet, with an average asking rent of just under $25 per square foot.
What Our Brokers Say About Oak Cliff Office Space for Rent
Oak Cliff is a sprawling neighborhood with a lot to offer, from historical sites and museums, to parks and nature reserves, to an array of unique and hip restaurants and bars. For stunning views of the city, our brokers recommend Trinity Overlook Park and the Reunion Tower Observation Deck. The Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza offers exhibits on JFK’s presidency and assassination, and the John F. Kennedy Memorial Plaza commemorates his life.
There are numerous outdoor and family-friendly attractions in Oak Cliff, including the Dallas Zoo, Kiest Park, the Oak Cliff Nature Preserve, Bahama Beach Waterpark, and the Lake Cliff Park and Rose Garden. As part of a humid subtropical region of Texas, there will be plenty of beautiful weather to enjoy these amenities throughout the year.
The Bishop Arts District is a shopping and entertainment district in North Oak Cliff, near the intersection of Bishop Street and Davis Street. It is a favorite destination for nightlife, indie fashion stores, restaurants and bars, and colorful street art. Some top choices for food and drinks include Davis Street Espresso; Bishop Arts Winery; Dude, Sweet Chocolate; Ten Bells Tavern, and Taqueria El Si Hay. Jonathon’s Oak Cliff is famous for its fried chicken and waffles, while Wild Detectives combines an independent bookstore with a bar and café. For great outdoor dining, Thrillist suggests Chicken Scratch and Foundry Bar, an Austin-inspired beer garden with live music and horseshoes, or Bar Belmont, a retro rooftop hotel bar with views of the Dallas skyline and access to the downstairs restaurant, Smoke.
Oak Cliff Neighborhood History
The construction of what would become Oak Cliff began in 1886 when John S. Armstrong and Thomas L. Marsalis purchased a 320-acre farm and started dividing it into blocks for development. They planned to create an elite residential neighborhood. Eventually, after a disagreement, Marsalis took full control over the Oak Cliff project, and Armstrong moved to north Dallas to build Highland Park.
By November of 1887, the suburb had a population of 500. The Oak Cliff Elevated Railway was built to cross the Trinity River and connect the fledgling neighborhood to the rest of Dallas. Along with the construction of Oak Cliff Park and the Park Hotel, the railway was intended to attract visitors and promote the image of Oak Cliff as a vacation resort. Oak Cliff incorporated in 1890, and its boundaries grew, thanks to new high-end developments by the Dallas Land and Loan Company. However, growth slowed after the depression of 1893, and Oak Cliff began the transition toward a working and middle-class neighborhood. The Park Hotel was converted to the Oak Cliff College for Young Ladies. By 1900, many lots once owned by the Dallas Land and Loan Company were subdivided and sold to middle and working-class families. The population was now just over 3600.
In 1902, the electric streetcar connecting Dallas to Fort Worth passed through Oak Cliff, as well as a smaller residential streetcar service throughout the neighborhood, earning it the nickname of a “streetcar suburb.” In 1903, still recovering from the depressed economy of the past decade, Oak Cliff was annexed by Dallas.
The mid-to-late 20th century saw Oak Cliff go through the same transition as many other predominantly white neighborhoods during desegregation. Various communities in the area, particularly in South Oak Cliff, experienced a subsequent white migration, and demographics shifted. Many Oak Cliff schools were also at the center of a long and infamous court battle over desegregation, overseen by Federal Judge Barefoot Sanders, that resulted in Dallas Independent School District schools not being officially declared integrated until 2003.
Getting Around Oak Cliff, Dallas
Oak Cliff is served by the DART Red and Blue Lines and connects to Downtown Dallas via the Dallas Streetcar. Walkscore ranks the area as only Somewhat Bikeable, due to limited bike lanes. The primary mode of transportation in Oak Cliff, as in the rest of Dallas-Fort Work, is driving.