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WOHA Overview

In December 1974, dozens of residents met to form the Whispering Oaks Homeowners Association and the group's By-Laws were filed with the state the following year to establish it as a non-profit corporation. The community of 451 homes was less than 6 years old and still under construction on its eastside and would grow to 752 residences by its completion 1978.

The surrounding area remained largely undeveloped which cultivated some concerns among residents regarding crime and safety within the new, high profile subdivision. At least 48 burglaries were reported in the community's first 6 years; many were reportedly petty thefts committed by area teens. One of WOHA's first initiatives was to procure a security patrol, a firm known as Neighborhood Ranger, which residents could hire to monitor their properties.

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The community was bustling with young families and some older children rode motorbikes along the Upper Olmos Creek drainage area adjacent to dozens of homes. This noise, combined with complaints of vehicle speeding along Whisper Valley, caused some residents to feel the neighborhood needed better advocacy and unification to maintain its promise for a better quality of life. The community's developers were eager wrap up home building and the group realized their departure would be a turning point for oversight of the subdivision. The builders had included provisions in the Community Covenants enabling residents to self-govern and WOHA set about organizing this effort.

Complicating matters, the builder's plans for the community began to shift with a faltering economy, and in 1976 one of the developers, Lloyd Denton, proposed reallocating land in the northeast sector to build an apartment complex along Lockhill-Selma between Whisper Quill and Whisper Path, as well as a two-story office complex along the southside of Whisper Quill. These proposals were met with threats of legal action from the nearby new homeowners whose properties would be encroached upon by these commercial facilities. WOHA served as a facilitator and the matter was eventually settled with neither development proceeding. It would be the first of many actions the group undertook to safeguard property values and the quality of life of all residents.

​While changes have been made to the organization over time, WOHA remains governed by a Board of up to 15 resident volunteers. Over the decades, dozens of neighbors have served as Board members in varying capacities. Elections take place each January and qualifying WOHA members may apply for a seat of a two-year term.

​The Board conducts its duties in accordance with By-Laws. It has a fiduciary responsibility to its members and publishes regular financial reports. WOHA can be empowered to enforce the Community Covenants which supplement City of San Antonio (CoSA) ordinances and apply to all properties regardless of WOHA membership status. 

​Membership in WOHA is not mandatory for residents, but is strongly encouraged to protect everyone’s investment and quality of life. Annual membership dues of just $125 are far less than what nearby communities mandate. Please note, WOHA is not affiliated with the Whispering Oaks Tennis & Swim Club whose governance and memberships are completely separate.

WOHA Accomplishments

Wall History

The largest project undertaken by WOHA to date was construction of the decorative concrete block perimeter wall in 1985 lining Wurzbach and Lockhill-Selma. It replaced dozens of individual fences of varying quality and created a uniform look for the subdivision. Thanks to considerable efforts by the Board, nearly $250,000 of voluntary contributions were eventually raised. It was a significant achievement, reflecting the collective pride of the neighborhood. 

 

The resulting wall shelters the community from increasingly busy roadways and adds prestige to the neighborhood. The 37 homeowners whose properties accepted a section were each deeded ownership and are responsible for its upkeep and liability, however any alteration or maintenance is to be supervised by WOHA.

​In 1987, the City expanded its portion of Wurzbach, and WOHA negotiated improvements including curbs and sidewalks. At that time, new entrance medians at Whisper Willow and Whisper Bow were installed, and WOHA spent over $40,000 for greenery and irrigation along the parkway. WOHA memberships cover the cost to maintain these areas today, averaging over $20,000 in landscaping expenses annually. 

 

​In 2005, WOHA partnered with the City to designate Whispering Oaks as a Neighborhood Conservation District. Only three other neighborhoods had been awarded this designation prior. These additional CoSA design standards supplement the Building Code and maintain the character of the neighborhood. This designation is not the same as a Historic District, which has more stringent rules regarding construction, renovations and upkeep. View CoSA NCD map and ordinances here

​In 2008, WOHA petitioned the City to install a traffic light on Wurzbach Road at Whisper Bow to reduce speeding along Wurzbach and help protect residents entering and leaving the neighborhood. The WOHA Board continues to work with Tx-Dot, the Councilperson of District 9, and groups such as Northside Neighborhood Organizations for Organized Development to protect the neighborhood's interests.

​In 2009, an Oak Wilt disease outbreak was discovered on Whisper Ledge that posed a serious contagious threat to our beautiful tree-dense community. The Texas Forest Service was consulted and recommended trenching to contain the fungus, which can transfer among interconnected oak root systems. A massive fundraising campaign was undertaken by WOHA, raising $85,000 from residents and another $15,000 secured from TFS, which was matched by a grant of $100,000 from CoSA. The resulting five foot deep trench filled with either concrete or barrier fabric was completed in 2011 and helped slow the progression of the fungus. Unfortunately, the disease continues to spread and has killed dozens of trees and cost unprepared homeowners thousands for their removal. Fungicide treatment is now available to mitigate the effects of Oak Wilt when applied in its early stages. WOHA remains vigilant to manage the outbreak and avoid future ones through continual education of residents.

​In 2013, WOHA installed nighttime lighting to the first of several entrance monuments at Whisper Sound. The final entrance, Whisper Willow, was illuminated in 2022. Installation of the light fixtures was highly complex and each intersection posed a unique set of challenges. However residents generally agree the final result adds prestige to the neighborhood and enhances safety for both motorists and pedestrians. WOHA memberships continue to pay for landscaping upgrades, repairs and utilities of the community entrances.

In 2020, several WOHA-owned sections of the 35 year old perimeter wall were buckling and posed serious risk of collapse. WOHA was able to move swiftly to repair the problem thanks to its Capital Fund which was created in part to remedy unforeseen infrastructure problems that our low cost membership dues simply can't cover. In 2021, WOHA launched its Legacy Fund enabling residents to propose or sponsor major infrastructure initiatives.

In 2021 Tx-Dot undertook expansion of its portion of Wurzbach and WOHA secured CoSA funding for safety upgrades to the roadway's intersection at Whisper Valley. At that time, the Board formally petitioned city officials for safety upgrades and eventual expansion of Lockhill-Selma to provide two lanes in both directions which would alleviate weekday congestion caused by Eleanor Kovitz Hebrew Language Academy at Dreamland which opened in 2020. In 2023 WOHA secured CoSA funding for new sidewalks along along the roadway providing safer passage for school children and other pedestrians. 

It would be easy to take for granted the time and money that dedicated WOHA members and its all-volunteer board have invested into Whispering Oaks for over 50 years. But without this continued advocacy, our community would have never secured dozens of enhancements nor defended itself from countless threats to property values and the quality of life we all enjoy. Residents who aren't current members are encouraged to join by clicking here.

Oak Wilt History
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