Collinwood House will not stay in its original location

Collinwood House 092314 001At a preliminary open meeting May 11, city council members continued with its development plans for Windhaven Park as planned, leaving the future of the Collinwood House uncertain.


In April, the Plano City Council gave preservationists until May 11 to raise the one million dollars needed to cover the restoration costs for the 1860s-era home – which is located off Windhaven Parkway – without the need for city funds. To date, the group has raised approximately $500,000. The group had been seeking a match from the city to begin the restoration process at the home’s original location.

Plano’s founding family ancestors, or legacy families, joined farmstead representatives and supporters at the meeting and outlined the connection that the house holds with Plano’s early years.

[The Collinwood project] is a grassroots project … [and] is a collaboration of Plano citizens, volunteers, preservation experts, heritage groups, legacy families and donors, and they are all passionate about saving Plano’s history, which is what we’re all about too,” said M’Lou Hyttinen, executive director of the Heritage Farmstead Museum.

Because the house is located in future Windhaven Park, council members have wondered how the house would survive in a public area. Council members and city staff also raised questions about security and what it would cost to maintain the home, as well as who would be responsible for its maintenance.

Original drafts of Windhaven Park had included the addition of a pavilion adjacent to the Collinwood House. Preservationists now have the option to move the house to the Haggard Farm for storage until needed funds can be raised to restore it.

Resident Marianne Wells said she and others in the preservation group did not get the chance to explain the historical significance of the house to staff during the park’s design phase. Had that taken place, Wells said the park’s plan would have included accommodations for the house.

“Three years ago, the park department was presented with a golden opportunity – to design a park around a 150-year-old house sitting on more than 100 acres of its original land grant,” said Wells. “Needless to say, any house in Texas that’s 150 years old is historically significant. From public records and ... journals, we found out that the Collinwood House and the land it stands on intersected the lives of nearly half the families chronicled in early years.”

Councilman Pat Miner said he likes to see structures like these preserved but didn’t find much historical value in the run-down house, and stressed the fact that the city did not have funds allocated to go toward its renovations.

“It’s always about the money. This isn’t a [one] million dollar project, it’s an ongoing [project],” Councilman Pat Gallagher said. “I don’t want to disappoint legacy families, but this project worries me because there are … literally thousands of people who want that park opened. That’s the competition – this group of passionate, caring historians versus a group of hungry residents [and] taxpayers who want a new park that they were promised a long time ago.”

Councilman David Downs asked what it would cost to give the group time to raise more funds. Factoring in the wait time for receiving the needed funds and the time it would take to incorporate the house into the city’s master plan, Parks and Recreation Director Amy Fortenberry said it would set Windhaven Park back three years.

Still, proponents for the restoration said all residents of the city would benefit from the wait and the glimpse into Plano’s history that it could eventually provide.

“I value and appreciate the rich history of Plano. The legacy of Plano is a group of brave settlers,” said Ginger Harrington, whose great-great grandfather built the Collinwood House. "It’s our obligation to provide our current residents with a sense of what that time was like. This would provide this for our citizens.”


MOST RECENT

Peter Lake (left), chair of the Public Utility Commission of Texas, and Brad Jones, interim president and CEO of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, provided an update on state regulators' electric grid redesign efforts in Austin on July 22. (Ben Thompson/Community Impact Newspaper)
Regulators: Texas electric grid prepared for potentially record-breaking demand next week; 'once-in-a-generation reforms' underway

The heads of the agencies in charge of the Texas electric grid met in Austin on July 22 to provide updates on their grid reform efforts.

Here is the latest data regarding COVID-19 in Plano. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
Tracking COVID-19: 3 Plano ZIP codes have more than 61% of residents fully vaccinated as of July 19

The 75024 ZIP code has the highest percentage of fully vaccinated residents with nearly 64%, while the 75074 ZIP code has the lowest percentage with nearly 47%.

Person on a roof.
Ask An Expert: Co-owner of Sarris & MacKir Roofing and Construction in Plano offers tips for home projects

Sarris & MacKir Roofing and Construction's services include free roof inspections, gutter replacement, window repair and replacement, interior and exterior painting, fence staining and complete roofing services.

Opioid abuse and the need for services addressing developmental disabilities are both on the rise in Collin County, LifePath Systems CEO Tammy Mahan told county commissioners on July 19. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Collin County’s LifePath Systems sees rise in spending for opioid abuse, psychiatric beds

On treatment for opioid abuse, spending rose to $912,662 in 2020, which is up from $808,524 in 2019.

Suburban Yacht Club plans to open in Plano in August. (Courtesy Shannon McCarthy)
Suburban Yacht Club coming to Plano; Gidi Bar & Grill opens in Frisco and more DFW-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Food.
Farm2Cook now open at new Plano location

The new location is next door to India Bazaar. Farm2Cook offers organic meat processed in compliance with Islamic religious requirements to be considered halal.

Sauna.
SweatHouz Infrared Sauna Studio planning September opening in Plano

SweatHouz offers private infrared saunas to guests for one hour at a time, along with a vitamin C-infused shower.

Spa treatment.
Issil Beauty Spa now serving clients in Plano

The spa features anti-aging and skin treatments such as fibroblasting, microneedling, dermaplaning and microdermabrasion.

Food.
Suburban Yacht Club planning for August opening in Plano

The restaurant's menu will offer Southern California food truck-inspired dishes such as quesabirria, crisped pork carnitas and Flamin’ Hot Cheetos elote.

Pizza and wings will be offered at Barro's Pizza when the restaurant opens in McKinney this September. (Courtesy Barro's Pizza)
Barro's Pizza coming to McKinney; Murad Furniture opens in Richardson and more DFW-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

Construction is ongoing for Shady Brook, a residential development near Grapevine's city center. An increase in new housing inventory is one factor experts believe could help alleviate pressure in the local real estate market. (Steven Ryzewski/Community Impact Newspaper)
Red-hot real estate, a new record store and more top stories from the Dallas-Fort Worth area

Read the most popular business and community news from the past week from the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

walkway
Canopied walkway connecting Legacy West, The Shops at Legacy now open

The project features two canopy-covered, 10-foot-wide paths, one for walking and one for bicyclists.