One of the comments on a blog post about the status of Oak Cliff Christian Church posed the question: If Dallas ISD bought the church for $450,000, why is the Old Oak Cliff Conservation League sale price $1.2 million?

I posed the question to OOCCL leaders John McCall and Michael Amonett, who have been working hard to find a taker for the historical structure before the Aug. 16 deadline. (The league even held an open house on a recent Saturday, inviting everyone to take a peek at the stripped-down church.) McCall explained that, after purchasing the building, Dallas ISD spent $479,000 to purchase and close on the property, plus another $553,000 on asbestos abatement (the building is now certified asbestos free). The remainder is because of legal and maintenance costs, McCall says.

The league chose neighborhood resident Monte Anderson of Options Real Estate to sell the church. Anderson, most well known for his ownership of the Belmont Hotel, also owns a number of properties in and around our neighborhood, and happens to care quite a bit about new urbanism. The listing for Oak Cliff Christian Church on the Options Real Estate website markets it as a structure that "could live on for another century. At least four city blocks in front, and to either side of the church complex will be cleared in the next year for athletic fields. Acres of green space will frame the structure and its view of the Dallas skyline." The land is currently zoned multi-family, and the OOCCL press release suggests that the view of downtown "makes a residence or a condominium conversion ideal."

My guess is that the OOCCL is hoping Oak Cliff Christian Church finds its own version of Mark Thomas and Candice Chase.