Saturday, August 13, 2022 Aug 13, 2022
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By Dan McGraw |

THESE PARTS Carswell Air Force Base may be closing, but Fort Worth will have another “military” installation opening very soon.

Fort Bass-as it is derisively called by some residents of Fort Worth’s tony River-crest neighborhood-will be the new home to billionaire SID BASS and wife MERCEDES. The 26-acre compound on Crestline Road offers a stunning sunset view above the West Fork of the Trinity River.

The Basses have already torn down two houses on the property, moved a third off the land and are in the midst of a $500,000 renovation of the main house. The major feature of the estate-and the reason for its military nickname-is a 9-foot tall, fortresslike brick wall with 15-foot pilasters and 12-foot guard towers. The toolshed will cost $100,000, according to city building-permit records, while the swimming pool will run a paltry $20,000.

Some of Bass’ neighbors are steamed, but there’s not much they can do to stop the project. Early on, when Bass needed a height variance from the city’s zoning board because his wall exceeded the limit by five feet, the board approved the plans despite criticism by several residents whose chain link fence permits were denied. That brought charges that favoritism had been shown the wealthy Bass clan.

“I haven’t seen a sunset since they started building it,” says LAWRENCE INGRAM, whose family has lived across the street from the Bass compound for 62 years. “They made no efforts to contact the little people in this neighborhood. Just the rich people.”

No move-in date has been set for the Basses, who obviously subscribe to the axiom about good fences making good neighbors. Especially when you want to keep the neighbors from looking at you.

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