University Park

About the City of University Park

Originally University Park was just a gathering of homes surrounding a rural educational institution called Southern Methodist University, which was founded situated north of Dallas in 1915. In fact, the university supplied the homes with utility services. But by 1924 that came to a stop when the population outgrew the capabilities of the school and incorporated. Eventually, the cluster of houses would become one of the country's most affluent communities and gain international recognition as the future home of a presidential library.

Perhaps that is why University Park has always placed an extraordinarily high priority on education. Indeed, there are residents who have gone from kindergarten through doctorate and law school without ever leaving University Park. The town of more than 22,000 can boast that it has even beaten its neighbor Highland Park in national rankings as one of the country's finest public school systems.

However, University Park is far more than a township solely revolving around educational institutions. Within its 3.8 square miles, and due to its proximity to Dallas, University Park offers all the advantages of a major city, while maintaining a small-town charm. Its parks, with their beautifully maintained lakes, provide recreational facilities for everything from baseball and soccer to tennis, and even dog runs. To complement the lifestyle of the town's residents, Snider Plaza with its one-of-a-kind petite boutiques and restaurants was developed cattycorner from SMU in 1927.

In addition to these educational and business services, University Park, though limited in space, boasts seven religious institutions including Highland Park United Methodist Church and Highland Park Presbyterian Church, homes of the largest Methodist and Presbyterian congregations in the nation.

University Park has indeed come a long way from its origins as a bedroom community for SMU. Today the residences of University Park range from charming renovated cottages built in the early 20th century to the magnificent Volk Estate mansions with their expansive acreage and their prestigious owners.

Shopping in University Park

  • Plaza at Preston Center - Located just to the north of Highland Park in University Park, the Plaza at Preston Center is a local destination for restaurants, local boutiques, and national brands. Preston Center's variety of storefronts includes Sprinkles Cupcakes, Bachendorf's jewelry, Houston's, and Baskin Robbins.
  • Northpark Center - Northpark Center was developed in the 1960s by Dallas developer Raymond Nasher and its opening forever changed the retail world in Texas and the Southwest. Today, Northpark remains one of the top shopping destinations in Texas with tenants ranging from flagships such as Neiman Marcus, Barneys New York, and Nordstrom, to boutiques such as Apple, Cartier, and Valentino. Northpark is situated just north of the Park Cities.

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