Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex facts for kids

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Dallas–Fort Worth-Arlington
Metropolitan Statistical Area
Downtown Dallas, Texas in March 2009
Downtown Dallas, Texas in March 2009
Downtown Fort Worth, Texas in June 2010
Downtown Fort Worth, Texas in June 2010
AT&T Stadium in Arlington
AT&T Stadium in Arlington
Country Flag of United States.svg United States
State Flag of Texas.svg Texas
Area
 • Urban 1,407.0 sq mi (3,644.2 km2)
 • Metro 9,286 sq mi (24,059 km2)
Highest elevation 1,368 ft (417 m)
Lowest elevation 430 ft (131 m)
Population (2010)
 • Density 634/sq mi (245/km2)
 • Urban 4,145,659 (6th)
 • MSA 6,426,214 (4th)
 • CSA 6,817,483 (7th)
  MSA/CSA: 2010
Urban: 2000
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
Area code(s) 214, 254, 469, 682, 817, 903, 940, 972
Interstates I-20.svg I-30.svg I-35.svg I-45.svg
I-35E.svg I-35W.svg I-345.svg I-635.svg I-820.svg

The Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington, TX Metropolitan Statistical Area, the official title designated by the United States Office of Management and Budget, encompasses 13 counties within the U.S. state of Texas. Residents of the area refer to it as the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, DFW, or The Metroplex. It is the economic and cultural hub of the region commonly called North Texas or North Central Texas and is the largest inland metropolitan area in the United States.

The 2015 official estimate U.S. Census has the Dallas–Fort Worth Metroplex at 7,102,796, making it the largest metropolitan area in the South. During the 12-month period from July 2008 to July 2009, the Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington metropolitan area gained 146,530 new residents, more than any other metropolitan area in the United States. The area's population has grown by about one million since the 2000 US census. The Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington MSA is, by population, the largest metropolitan area in Texas, the largest in the South, the fourth-largest in the United States, and the tenth-largest in the Americas. The metroplex encompasses 9,286 square miles (24,100 km2) of total area: 8,991 sq mi (23,290 km2) is land, while 295 sq mi (760 km2) is water, making it larger in area than the U.S. states of Rhode Island and Connecticut combined. It also has the fourth largest gross metropolitan product (GMP) in the United States, and approximately tenth largest by GMP in the world.

Origin of the term

See also: Metroplex

A portmanteau of metropolis and complex, the term metroplex is credited to Harve Chapman, an executive vice president with Dallas-based Tracy-Locke which was one of three advertising agencies that worked with the North Texas Commission (NTC) on strategies to market the region. The NTC copyrighted the term "Southwest Metroplex" in 1972 as a replacement for the previously-ubiquitous "North Texas", which studies had shown lacked identifiability outside the state. In fact, only 38 percent of a survey group identified Dallas and Fort Worth as part of "North Texas", with the Texas Panhandle also a perceived correct answer, being the northernmost region of Texas.

Metroplex counties

DFWCounties
Counties in the DFW metroplex (picture is now outdated)

Metroplex cities, towns, and CDPs

Note: Cities and towns are categorized based on the latest population estimates from the North Central Texas Council of Governments (as of January 1, 2012). No population estimates are released for census-designated places (CDPs), which are marked with an asterisk (*). These places are categorized based on their 2010 census population.

Places with more than 100,000 inhabitants

Dallas Metropolitan Area at Night
Northern Dallas metropolitan area at night – astronaut photo, courtesy NASA (November 15, 2012)

Places designated "principal cities" by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) are italicized.

1,000,000+

500,000–999,999

200,000–499,999

100,000–199,999

Places with 10,000 to 99,999 inhabitants

Places with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants

Unincorporated places

Demographics

Historical populations
Census Pop.
1970 2,424,131
1980 3,017,230 24.5%
1990 3,989,294 32.2%
2000 5,161,544 29.4%
2010 6,426,214 24.5%

As of the 2010 United States census, there were 6,371,773 people. The racial makeup of the MSA was 50.2% White, 15.4% African American, 0.6% Native American, 5.9% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 10.0% from other races, and 2.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 27.5% of the population.

The median income for a household in the MSA was $48,062, and the median income for a family was $55,263. Males had a median income of $39,581 versus $27,446 for females. The per capita income for the MSA was $21,839.

Combined Statistical Area

The Dallas-Fort Worth, TX-OK Combined Statistical Area is made up of 20 counties in north central Texas and one county in southern Oklahoma. The statistical area includes two metropolitan areas and seven micropolitan areas. As of the 2010 Census, the CSA had a population of 6,817,483 (though a July 1, 2015 estimate placed the population at 7,504,362). The CSA definition encompasses 14,628 sq mi (37,890 km2) of area, of which 14,126 sq mi (36,590 km2) is land and 502 sq mi (1,300 km2) is water.

Components

Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs)

  • Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington (Collin, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Hunt, Hood, Johnson, Kaufman, Parker, Rockwall, Somervell, Tarrant, and Wise counties)
  • Sherman-Denison (Grayson County)

Micropolitan Statistical Areas (μSAs)

Note: The Granbury micropolitan statistical area (Hood and Somervell counties) was made part of the Dallas–Fort Worth–Arlington, Texas Metropolitan Statistical Area effective 2013.

Demographics

As of the census of 2000, there were 5,487,956 people, 2,006,665 households, and 1,392,540 families residing within the CSA. The racial makeup of the CSA was 70.41% White, 13.34% African American, 0.59% Native American, 3.58% Asian, 0.08% Pacific Islander, 9.62% from other races, and 2.39% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 20.83% of the population. It is home to the fourth-largest Muslim population in the country.

The median income for a household in the CSA was $43,836, and the median income for a family was $50,898. Males had a median income of $37,002 versus $25,553 for females. The per capita income for the CSA was $20,460.

Geography

The Metroplex overlooks mostly prairie land with a few rolling hills dotted by man-made lakes cut by streams, creeks and rivers surrounded by forest land. The Metroplex is situated in the Texas blackland prairies region, so named for its fertile black soil found especially in the rural areas of Collin, Dallas, Ellis, Hunt, Kaufman, and Rockwall counties.

Many areas of Denton, Johnson, Parker, Tarrant, and Wise counties are located in the Fort Worth Prairie region of North Texas, which has less fertile and more rocky soil than that of the Texas blackland prairie; most of the rural land on the Fort Worth Prairie is ranch land. A large onshore natural gas field, the Barnett Shale, lies underneath this area; Denton, Tarrant and Wise counties feature many natural gas wells. Continuing land use change results in scattered crop fields surrounded by residential or commercial development.

South of Dallas and Fort Worth is a line of rugged hills that goes north to south about 15 miles (24 km) that looks similar to the Texas Hill Country 200 miles (320 km) to the south.

Transportation

See also: List of Dallas–Fort Worth-area freeways

The Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (IATA airport code: DFW), located between the cities of Dallas and Fort Worth, is the largest and busiest airport in the state of Texas. At 100 square kilometres (39 sq mi) of total land area, DFW is the second-largest airport in the country and sixth-largest in the world. It is the third-busiest airport in the world in terms of aircraft movements and the seventh-busiest airport in the world in terms of passenger traffic, transporting 62.9 million passengers in FY 2014. American Airlines, based in Fort Worth, has its headquarters adjacent to DFW Airport. American, which recently regained the title as largest airline in the world in terms of passengers transported and fleet size, is a predominant leader in domestic routes and operations.

Love Field Airport (IATA airport code: DAL) is located on the northwest side of the city of Dallas. Southwest Airlines is based in Dallas next to Love Field.

Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex Rail Transit Services
Diagram of public rail transit in the Dallas/Fort Worth area

Public transit options continue to expand significantly, however, it is limited in several outlying and rural suburbs. Dallas County and parts of Collin and Rockwall counties have bus service and light rail operated by Dallas Area Rapid Transit (DART), covering thirteen member cities. With the completion of projects under construction, DART's rail network will grow beyond 93 miles of track by 2016. The Red Line extends north to Plano and southwest to Westmoreland Road. The Blue Line reaches from Rowlett in the northeast to Ledbetter Road in south Dallas (with an additional 3 miles south to the University of North Texas at Dallas campus near I-20 scheduled to open in 2016). The 28-mile Green Line, which opened in December 2010, connects Carrollton in the northwest through Downtown Dallas to Pleasant Grove in the southeast. The Orange Line, which completed expansion in 2014, parallels the Red Line from Plano to Downtown Dallas and the Green Line from Downtown Dallas to Northwest Hwy extending through Las Colinas (Irving) to reach DFW International Airport.

Denton County has bus service limited to Denton, Highland Village, and Lewisville (with commuter service to downtown Dallas) provided by the Denton County Transportation Authority (DCTA). The A-train, a diesel commuter rail line, parallels I-35E to connect Denton, Highland Village, Lewisville, and Carrollton. Several smaller towns along this line, Corinth, Shady Shores, and Lake Dallas, voted to abstain from DCTA and do not have stations. There is an across-the-platform transfer in Carrollton to the DART Green Line. A-Train service began June 20, 2011.

Tarrant County has bus service operated by the Fort Worth Transportation Authority (known as 'The T'), available only in Fort Worth. The diesel commuter train that serves Fort Worth and its eastern suburbs is operated as the Trinity Railway Express; it connects downtown Fort Worth to downtown Dallas, where it links to the DART light rail system. A station near its midpoint, Centerport, serves DFW Airport via a free airport shuttle bus. The TRE is jointly owned by FWTA and DART. Amtrak serves Dallas and Fort Worth once daily in each direction on a route from Chicago to Austin to San Antonio, with connections at San Antonio to New Orleans, Houston, El Paso, Phoenix, and Los Angeles.

The Dallas-Fort Worth area has thousands of lane-miles of freeways and interstates. The Metroplex has the second-largest number of freeway-miles per capita in the nation, behind only the Kansas City Metropolitan Area. As in most major metropolitan areas in Texas, most interstates and freeways have access or frontage roads where most of the businesses are located; these access roads have slip ramps allowing traffic to transition between the freeway and access road. North-south interstates include I-35 and I-45. East-west routes include I-30 and I-20. I-35 splits into I-35E and I-35W from Denton to Hillsboro: I-35W goes through Fort Worth while I-35E goes through Dallas. (This is one of only two examples of an interstate splitting off into branches and then rejoining as one; the other such split is in Minneapolis-St. Paul where I-35E goes into St. Paul and I-35W goes through Minneapolis.) I-30 connects Dallas and Fort Worth, and I-45 connects Dallas to Houston. The "multiple-of-5" numbers used for the interstate designations are notable, as these numbers were designed to be used for major multi-state arteries of the U.S. Interstate Highway System. The North Texas region is the terminus for two of them, and I-45 is located only within Texas.

HOV lanes exist along I-35E, I-30, I-635, US 67, and US 75. I-20 bypasses both Dallas and Fort Worth to the south while its loop, I-820, goes around Fort Worth. I-635 splits to the north of I-20 and loops around east and north Dallas, ending at SH 121 north of DFW Airport. I-35E, Loop 12, and Spur 408 ultimately connect to I-20 southwest of Dallas, completing the west bypass loop around Dallas. A large number of construction projects are planned or are already underway in the region to alleviate congestion. Due largely to funding issues, many of the new projects involve building new tollways or adding tolled express lanes to existing highways, which are managed by the North Texas Tollway Authority. It was originally established to manage the Dallas North Tollway and oversees several other toll projects in the area.

As of 2016 the Taiwanese airline EVA Air operates a shuttle bus service from George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston to Richardson, so that Dallas-based customers may fly on its services to and from Houston.

Largest area employers

Dallas–Fort Worth Metroplex

Company No. of employees
locally
Type of business
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. 34,000 Retail
American Airlines 27,000 Commercial airline
Texas Health Resources 22,296 Health care
Dallas Independent School District 19,740 Education
Baylor Health Care System 16,500 Health care

Images for kids


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