Oak Forest residents have a lot to be excited about! This rapidly redeveloping neighborhood north of 610 is one of Houston’s best-kept secrets. But don’t expect it to stay that way for long…Oak Forest is well on its way to becoming the next Bellaire or West U, and is more than deserving of the renown that comes with that title. Its no wonder Houstonia Magazine listed Oak Forest, along with its next-door neighbor Garden Oaks, among its 25 hottest neighborhoods for 2013.
Though its located only a few minutes from the Galleria area and Downtown, Oak Forest is known for its large lot sizes and suburban feel, allowing residents to escape the city mentally while being physically located in the heart of it all. These are only a few reasons that make Oak Forest a great buy!
One of the city of Houston’s largest neighborhoods, Oak Forest was originally developed in 1947 by the Oak Forest Realty Corporation, and was marketed mainly to returning World War II Veterans and their families. What began as one small neighborhood blossomed into a collection of 18 at the community’s completion. The neighborhood was officially annexed by the city of Houston in 1949.
In 2010, the Houston Press listed Oak Forest in its list of Houston’s most underrated
neighborhoods, but the neighborhood is quickly gaining attention as homebuyers flock here for great houses in a great location for a great price.
As of 2011, the neighborhood contained 5,480 houses. The original homes are mainly mid-century ranch style. Today, many of the original homes are being replaced by new, 2-story homes, as Oak Forest follows in the footsteps of Bellaire and West U.
Good to Know:
Oak Forest lies within the city of Houston, so police protection is provided by the Houston Police Department. Oak Forest is located within the North Patrol Division, located at 9455 West Montgomery Road. The Houston Fire Department operates a fires station within Oak Forest, Station 13 Oak Forest, located at 2215 West 43rd Street.
Though Oak Forest is located within Houston, it has its own Post Office, the Oak Forest Post Office, at 2499 Judiway Street.
Shopping and Dining:
Whether youʼre an avid mall shopper or your tastes lie more on the eclectic side, Oak Forest provides easy access to some of Houstonʼs best shopping. The Galleria is only a few minutes away on 610, while the Heights, just south of 610, is a haven for quirky small businesses, coffee shops, and cafes.
In recent years, the so-called “Heights-chic” has leapt over 610 and spread north, which means residents neednʼt even leave the neighborhood in search of unique restaurants and bars to suit all tastes, whether itʼs a low-key wine bar or a friendly neighborhood pub you seek.
Oak Forest lies within the Houston Independent School District. Students in grades K-5 are zoned to a number of elementary schools, primarily the communityʼs own highly regarded Oak Forest Elementary School. Students from some portions will attend Garden Oaks, Kate Smith, Stevens, Benbrook, and Wainwright Elementary Schools. Middle school students in the eastern portion of the community are zoned to attend Frank Black Middle School, while those in the western portion are zoned to Clifton
High school students on the east side of the community are zoned to attend Waltrip High School; students on the west side of the community are zoned to attend Scarborough High School. However, Houston ISDʼs magnet school program provides a plethora of other nearby options, from academically-driven Lamar High School to
HSPVA for the more artistically inclined.
Libraries, Parks & Recreation, and Other Amenities
The Oak Forest Neighborhood Library is located at 1349 West 43rd Street, and is operated by the Houston Public Library. A variety of parks serve Oak Forest residents. The Candlelight Community Center and Park hosts an indoor gymnasium, as well as a playground and track. Oak Forest Park is located at 2100 Judiway and features a swimming pool, playground and tennis courts. T.C. Jester Park hosts the White Oak Bayou Trail, ideal for cyclists and runners, and contains the T.C. Jester Swimming Pool for the aquatically inclined.