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Longview, Texas
City of Longview
From top to bottom, left to right: Longview Public Library, Veteran's Monument, United States Post Office, VeraBank (Formerly Citizens National Bank), First Presbyterian Church, Petroleum Building, and First Baptist Church
From top to bottom, left to right: Longview Public Library, Veteran's Monument, United States Post Office, VeraBank (Formerly Citizens National Bank), First Presbyterian Church, Petroleum Building, and First Baptist Church
Nickname(s): 
Balloon Race Capital of Texas
Motto(s): 
Real East Texas
Location of Longview in Gregg and Harrison counties in the U.S. state of Texas
Location of Longview in Gregg and Harrison counties in the U.S. state of Texas
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Coordinates: 32°30′33″N 94°45′14″W / 32.50917°N 94.75389°W / 32.50917; -94.75389Coordinates: 32°30′33″N 94°45′14″W / 32.50917°N 94.75389°W / 32.50917; -94.75389
Country  United States
State  Texas
Counties Gregg, Harrison
Government
 • Type Council-Manager
Area
 • City 55.93 sq mi (144.85 km2)
 • Land 55.83 sq mi (144.59 km2)
 • Water 0.10 sq mi (0.26 km2)
Elevation
371 ft (113 m)
Population
 (2010)
 • City 80,455
 • Estimate 
(2019)
81,631
 • Density 1,462.21/sq mi (564.57/km2)
 • Metro
204,746
Time zone UTC−6 (Central (CST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
ZIP codes
75601–75606
Area code(s) 903 and 430
FIPS code 48-43888
GNIS feature ID 1374716

Longview is the 47th largest city in the state of Texas. The city is mostly located in Gregg County, of which it is the county seat; a small part of Longview extends into the western part of neighboring Harrison County. Longview is located in East Texas, where Interstate 20 and U.S. Highways 80 and 259 converge just north of the Sabine River. According to the 2010 U.S. census, the city had a population of 80,455. The estimated population in 2019 was 81,653. Longview is the principal city of the Longview Metropolitan Statistical Area, comprising Gregg, Upshur, and Rusk Counties. The population of the metropolitan area as of 2017 census estimates is 217,481.

Longview was established in 1870 in what was at the time southern Upshur County. The town incorporated in 1871. After Gregg County was created in 1873, Longview was voted the county seat. Today, Longview is considered a major hub city for the region, as is the nearby city of Tyler. In 2014, Forbes magazine ranked Longview as the sixth fastest-growing small city in the United States. Companies with significant presence in Longview are Eastman Chemical, Trinity Rail Group, AAON Coil Products and Komatsu Mining. Colleges and universities in the area include LeTourneau University, Kilgore College and the University of Texas at Tyler's Longview University Center.

History

Longview, TX sign IMG 4048
Longview sign on Interstate 20

Longview was founded in the 1870s by Ossamus Hitch Methvin, Sr. In 1870, Methvin sold 100 acres (40 ha) to the Southern Pacific Railroad for one dollar to persuade them to build their line in the direction of land he owned. Later that year, he sold another 100 acres (40 ha) for $500 in gold. He hoped the coming of the railroad would increase the value of the rest of his land.

Methvin coined the name of the town when he stated, "What a long view!" from his home. In June 1871, Longview was incorporated as the first town in Gregg County.

In July 1919, a reporter for The Chicago Defender was in Longview looking into the mysterious death of a black man named Lemuel Walters. An armed white mob attacked a home where the reporter, S.L. Jones, was staying and attempted to batter their way in. A gunfight began between the attackers and the men in the house. Eventually, Jones made a getaway. The white men then began to burn buildings in the black section of the town.

In 1942, construction began on the Big Inch pipeline in Longview. From 1943 to 1945, the pipeline transported over 261,000,000 barrels of crude oil to the East Coast. At the time of construction, Big Inch and its smaller twin, Little Inch, comprised the longest petroleum pipeline ever built in the world. Both were integral in supplying the United States war effort in World War II.

Geography

Longview, TX from above
Longview from above

Longview is located at 32°30′33″N 94°45′14″W / 32.50917°N 94.75389°W / 32.50917; -94.75389 (32.509147, -94.753909). It is bordered to the west by the city of White Oak and is surrounded by many other cities and towns, including Kilgore (southwest), Gladewater (west), Gilmer (northwest), Ore City (north), Harleton (northeast), Hallsville (east), and Lakeport (southeast). It is 37 miles (60 km) northeast of the similarly sized city of Tyler.

Incorporated areas include Spring Hill, Greggton, Pine Tree, Judson, and Longview Heights.

Climate

Winter: Winters are mild. Average snowfall is less than 2 inches (5 cm), with usually one or two ice storms each winter. Normal highs are from the 50s–60s. Lows range from the 30s to the 40s. Temperature rarely dips below 20 °F and occasionally can get as warm as 80 °F during the winter months.

Spring: The season brings storms as a transition from winter to summer. Temperatures range from the 60s to 80s for the high, and the 40s to the 60s for the low. The average date of the last frost is April 4. Severe thunderstorms are common during this season as cold fronts pass though the area. This is the wettest time of year.

Summer: The summer is hot and humid. Temperatures slowly climb from the 90s to the 100s going into the dog days of summer. Lows are in the 70s. This is the driest and sunniest time of year. The heat index can climb to around 110 °F.

Fall: Fall is marked by the first cold front that knocks the 100-degree temperatures down into the 90s. Foliage begins to change in late October. Temperatures cool down and dew points drop.

Climate data for Longview, Texas
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 86
(30)
90
(32.2)
97
(36.1)
98
(36.7)
103
(39.4)
110
(43.3)
108
(42.2)
113
(45)
109
(42.8)
101
(38.3)
93
(33.9)
93
(33.9)
113
(-17.8)
Average high °F (°C) 57
(13.9)
63
(17.2)
70
(21.1)
77
(25)
84
(28.9)
91
(32.8)
94
(34.4)
94
(34.4)
89
(31.7)
80
(26.7)
63
(17.2)
59
(15)
76.8
(24.86)
Average low °F (°C) 34
(1.1)
37
(2.8)
44
(6.7)
51
(10.6)
61
(16.1)
69
(20.6)
72
(22.2)
71
(21.7)
65
(18.3)
53
(11.7)
43
(6.1)
36
(2.2)
53
(11.67)
Record low °F (°C) −4
(-20)
3
(-16.1)
17
(-8.3)
20
(-6.7)
37
(2.8)
52
(11.1)
56
(13.3)
46
(7.8)
38
(3.3)
25
(-3.9)
20
(-6.7)
2
(-16.7)
-4
(-17.8)
Precipitation inches (mm) 3.79
(96.3)
3.93
(99.8)
4.11
(104.4)
4.19
(106.4)
4.79
(121.7)
5.03
(127.8)
2.83
(71.9)
2.71
(68.8)
3.81
(96.8)
4.34
(110.2)
4.75
(120.7)
4.78
(121.4)
49.06
(1,246.1)

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 1,525
1890 2,034 33.4%
1900 3,591 76.5%
1910 5,155 43.6%
1920 5,713 10.8%
1930 5,036 −11.9%
1940 13,758 173.2%
1950 24,502 78.1%
1960 40,050 63.5%
1970 45,547 13.7%
1980 62,762 37.8%
1990 70,311 12.0%
2000 73,344 4.3%
2010 80,455 9.7%
2019 (est.) 81,631 1.5%
U.S. Decennial Census

In the 2010 census, Longview had a population of 80,455. The median age was 34. The racial and ethnic composition of the population was 56.2% non-Hispanic white, 22.6% non-Hispanic black, 0.5% Native American, 1.4% Asian, 9.5% from some other race, 2.3% from two or more races and 18.0% Hispanic or Latino.

In the census of 2000, 73,344 people, 28,363 households, and 19,116 families resided in the city. The population density was 1,341.8 people per square mile (518.1/km2). The 30,727 housing units averaged a density of 562.1 per square mile (217.0/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 70.10% White, 22.11% African American, 0.50% Native American, 0.83% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 4.92% from other races, and 1.51% from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 10.31% of the population.

Of the 28,363 households, 33.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.9% were married couples living together, 14.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.6% were not families. About 27.9% of all households were individuals who lived alone, and 10.7% of all households were 65 years of age or more and living alone. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 3.06.

The city's population had 26.7% under the age of 18, 10.8% from 18 to 24, 28.7% from 25 to 44, 20.4% from 45 to 64, and 13.3% who were 65 years of age or more. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females, there were 93.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.4 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $33,858, and for a family was $42,378. Males had a median income of $33,078 versus $21,400 for females. The per capita income for the city was $15,676. About 13.0% of families and 16.0% of the population were below the poverty line, including 22.7% of those under age 18 and 10.6% of those age 65 or over.

Transportation

Airport

East Texas Regional Airport, 9 miles (14 km) south of the city center, offers service to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport via Envoy Air. The airport continues to grow. In 2007, it was designated a foreign trade zone.

The airport is known by pilots around the region for its large, 10,000-foot (3 km) runway. It serves as a backup landing site for U.S. space shuttles.

The Longview airport is home to the flight training program of LeTourneau University. The aeronautical students do classwork at the airport, as well as all their flight training.

Public transportation

The city's public transit system, Longview Transit, runs daily routes, excluding Sundays and holidays. Its fixed routes provide transportation to key districts throughout the city.

City of Longview Transit (COLT) provides transportation demand-response transportation services for those who are unable to use the regular Longview Transit fixed-route service.

Rail service

Amtrak passenger rail service is available on the Texas Eagle through a downtown terminal. Longview's Amtrak station is the second-busiest in Texas and the fourth-busiest station along the Texas Eagle route. Daily trains between Chicago and San Antonio stop each morning (Chicago–San Antonio) and each evening (San Antonio–Chicago). Monday, Wednesday and Friday, the Longview station serves the Chicago to Los Angeles trains. The return train, Los Angeles to Chicago, stops in Longview on Sunday, Tuesday, and Friday. It serves about 20–50 passengers per day. From the station, passengers can connect to Nacogdoches, Houston, and Galveston, as well as Shreveport, Louisiana, by motorcoach. A proposal is in the works for a high-speed rail system from Dallas/Fort Worth to Shreveport along the I-20 corridor.

Longview is served by two freight railroad lines. Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad operates two trains daily through Longview. The Union Pacific Railroad has 25 daily trains through Longview's facilities.

The Longview Economic Development Corporation website provides more details about the transportation infrastructure, including air, rail, trucking, waterways, and highway information. Many maps are also available.

Roads

See also: List of highways in Gregg County, Texas

One Interstate freeway and two U.S. highways run through Longview. Four Texas state highways also run into Longview. Two Texas state highway spurs serve to connect highways in Longview.

  • Interstate 20, an east–west freeway, connects Longview to Dallas, about 125 mi (201 km) to the west and to Shreveport, Louisiana, around 60 mi (97 km) to the east.
  • U.S. Highway 80 runs through the central district of Longview. U.S. Hwy 80 was once a coast-to-coast highway from Tybee Beach near Savannah, Georgia, and ran continuously across the southern part of the United States to San Diego, California. Today, its western terminus is in Dallas, making the length only 1,032 mi (1,661 km).
  • U.S. Highway 259 is a 250-mile-long (400 km) north/south highway providing an alternate route to U.S. 59 between Nacogdoches, Texas, and the Oklahoma/Arkansas border just south of Forth Smith, Arkansas. Before Interstate 20, US 259 went through the center of Longview on a route now designated Texas State Highway 31 and Spur 502.
  • Texas Highway 31 runs 143.3 miles (230.6 km) east/west between Longview and Waco, Texas.
  • Texas Highway 149, 33.9 mi (54.6 km) long, connects Longview with Carthage.
  • Texas Highway 300 is a short (18.62-mile (29.97 km)) highway connecting Longview to U.S. 271 in Gilmer.
  • Texas Highway 281 is a 19.3-mile (31.1 km) loop highway that circumnavigates much of Longview from its east connection at I-20 east of the Gregg/Harrison county line to I-20 in Longview. It runs northward, westward, southward and eastward around the city.
  • Spur 502 connects north/south traffic between U.S. Hwy 80 in central Longview and U.S. Hwy 259 north of Longview.
  • Spur 63 runs north/south through Longview connecting TX Hwy 31 at its Longview terminus with Spur 502 north of TX Loop 281.

Longview is accessed easily by I-20, which passes 4 miles (6 km) south of the city center. New construction has prompted some major upgrades to the city's system of roads. Medians have been added to Loop 281 as Phase I of the project is nearing completion. Phase II of the project will upgrade the road to a six-lane parkway. Slated to start in 2009, TxDOT has informed Longview officials that the funds have been withdrawn, placing Phase II on indefinite hold. TxDOT is researching an outer loop around the north side of Longview to complete the East Texas Hourglass. The road will loop around Longview and Tyler and is slated to start in 2012.

The new Interstate 69 will be passing just east of the Longview area between Longview and Marshall, near or over the current US 59 highway.

Economy

Former Chase Bank building, Longview, TX IMG 3994
Longview's tallest building is 10 stories and houses the VeraBank (Formerly Citizens National Bank). When it was built in 1956, it was built to be able to be expanded to 17 stories.
Good Shepherd Medical Center, Longview, TX IMG 4940
CHRISTUS Good Shepherd Medical Center is located on U.S. Highway 80 in north Longview.
LEDCOnewlogo
TylerStreet
Looking west on Tyler Street in downtown Longview

Some major sectors of the Longview economy include the East Texas Oil Field, services, technology, and manufacturing. In 2007, Longview added some major chain stores to its north side. The addition of Kohl's, two Starbucks, a new Target, a third Walmart supercenter on the south side, and a handful of hotels. Keeping shoppers in Longview and away from Tyler, Dallas, and Shreveport has been an important strategy for the city. .

In October 2007, Longview was recertified as a Texas Urban Main Street City. There are 89 cities in the Texas Main Street Program, 10 of them are Urban Main Street Cities. In December 2007, Longview was awarded the "Certified Retirement Community" designation by the Texas Department of Agriculture through its "Go Texan" initiative. Longview was also included in 2007 in the "Top 100 Best Cities for Young People."

Longview is one of several cities in East Texas that serves as a center for the "patent troll" industry, due to a perception that the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas is a favorable venue for patent infringement plaintiffs.

LEDCO

The Longview Economic Development Corporation (LEDCO) is an economic development group managing economic development for the City of Longview. LEDCO was created by the voters of Longview in 1991 under the Development Act of 1979 (Texas revised Civil Statutes article 5190.6 section 4A) for the purpose of creating and retaining primary jobs. The Corporation's independent board of directors is appointed by the mayor and city council. The Corporation owns two business parks in Longview with 1,200 acres (4.9 km2) of land. The Corporation's website maintains information on available sites and buildings, demographic data, psychographic data, maps, aerial photographs, and an area manufacturing database.

Largest employers

According to the municipal Fiscal Year 2018-2019 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the city are:

# Employer # of Employees Type of Business
1 CHRISTUS Good Shepherd Medical Center 2,532 Medical/Hospital Services
2 Eastman Chemical 1,447 Chemical
3 Longview Independent School District 1,400 Public Schools
4 Longview Regional Medical Center 1,125 Medical/Hospital Services
5 Walmart 1,057 Retail
6 Trinity Rail, LLC 960 Railway Cars
7 City of Longview 912 Government
8 Pine Tree Independent School District 680 Public Schools
9 Komatsu 604 Manufacturing
10 Gregg County 575 Government

Education

Belcher Chapel and Performing Arts Center, Longview, IMG 4023
S.E. Belcher, Jr. Chapel and Performance Center at LeTourneau University

Colleges and universities

The city of Longview is home to three institutions of higher learning and two trade (cosmetology) schools:

  • LeTourneau University
  • Kilgore College, Longview Campus
  • University of Texas at Tyler, Longview University Center

Public school districts

Longview is served by four school districts.

  • Longview Independent School District – enrollment 8,150, 16 schools, home of the Lobos, serves south and northeast Longview
  • Pine Tree Independent School District – enrollment 4,631, seven schools, home of the Pirates, serves west Longview including Pine Tree and Greggton
  • Spring Hill Independent School District – enrollment 1,862, five schools, home of the Panthers, serves north Longview in the Spring Hill area
  • Hallsville Independent School District – enrollment 4,037, six schools, home of the Bobcats, serves far east Longview around Harrison County.

Infrastructure

Transportation

Airport

East Texas Regional Airport, 9 miles (14 km) south of the city center, offers service to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport via Envoy Air. The airport continues to grow. In 2007, it was designated a foreign trade zone.

The airport is known by pilots around the region for its large, 10,000-foot (3 km) runway. It served as a backup landing site for U.S. space shuttles.

The Longview airport is home to the flight training program of LeTourneau University. The aeronautical students do classwork at the airport, as well as all their flight training.

Public transportation

The city's public transit system, Longview Transit, runs daily routes, excluding Sundays and holidays. Its fixed routes provide transportation to key districts throughout the city.

City of Longview Transit (COLT) provides transportation demand-response transportation services for those who are unable to use the regular Longview Transit fixed-route service.

Rail service

Amtrak passenger rail service is available on the Texas Eagle through a downtown terminal. Longview's Amtrak station is the second-busiest in Texas and the fourth-busiest station along the Texas Eagle route. Daily trains between Chicago and San Antonio stop each morning (Chicago–San Antonio) and each evening (San Antonio–Chicago). Monday, Wednesday and Friday, the Longview station serves the Chicago to Los Angeles trains. The return train, Los Angeles to Chicago, stops in Longview on Sunday, Tuesday, and Friday. It serves about 20–50 passengers per day. From the station, passengers can connect to Nacogdoches, Lufkin, Houston, and Galveston, as well as Shreveport, Louisiana, by motorcoach. A proposal is in the works for a high-speed rail system from Dallas/Fort Worth to Shreveport along the I-20 corridor, bringing passenger rail service to that corridor for the first time since the Texas and Pacific's unnamed successor to the Louisiana Eagle in the late 1960s.

Longview is served by two freight railroad lines. Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad operates two trains daily through Longview. The Union Pacific Railroad has 25 daily trains through Longview's facilities.

The Longview Economic Development Corporation website provides more details about the transportation infrastructure, including air, rail, trucking, waterways, and highway information.

Roads

See also: List of highways in Gregg County, Texas

One Interstate freeway and two U.S. highways run through Longview. Four Texas state highways also run into Longview. Two Texas state highway spurs serve to connect highways in Longview.

  • Interstate 20, an east–west freeway, connects Longview to Dallas, about 125 mi (201 km) to the west and to Shreveport, Louisiana, around 60 mi (97 km) to the east.
  • U.S. Highway 80 runs through the central district of Longview. U.S. Hwy 80 was once a coast-to-coast highway from Tybee Beach near Savannah, Georgia, and ran continuously across the southern part of the United States to San Diego, California. Today, its western terminus is in Dallas, making the length only 1,032 mi (1,661 km).
  • U.S. Highway 259 is a 250-mile-long (400 km) north/south highway providing an alternate route to U.S. 59 between Nacogdoches, Texas, and the Oklahoma/Arkansas border just south of Fort Smith, Arkansas. Before Interstate 20, US 259 went through the center of Longview on a route now designated Texas State Highway 31 and Spur 502.
  • Texas Highway 31 runs 143.3 miles (230.6 km) east/west between Longview and Waco, Texas.
  • Texas Highway 149, 33.9 mi (54.6 km) long, connects Longview with Carthage.
  • Texas Highway 300 is a short (18.62-mile (29.97 km)) highway connecting Longview to U.S. 271 in Gilmer.
  • Texas Highway 281 is a 19.3-mile (31.1 km) loop highway that circumnavigates much of Longview from its east connection at I-20 east of the Gregg/Harrison county line to I-20 in Longview. It runs northward, westward, southward and eastward around the city.
  • Spur 502 connects north/south traffic between U.S. Hwy 80 in central Longview and U.S. Hwy 259 north of Longview.
  • Spur 63 runs north/south through Longview connecting TX Hwy 31 at its Longview terminus with Spur 502 north of TX Loop 281.

Longview is accessed by I-20, which passes 4 miles (6 km) south of the city center. New construction has prompted some major upgrades to the city's system of roads.

Interstate 69 will be passing just east of the Longview area between Longview and Marshall, near or over the current US 59 highway.

Notable people

  • Jeb Blount, American football player with Oakland Raiders and Tampa Bay Buccaneers, won Super Bowl XI
  • Shawn Byrdsong, American football player
  • Rodney Carrington, A multi-talented comedian, actor, and writer who has recorded eight major record label comedy albums
  • Chris Davis, professional baseball player for the Baltimore Orioles
  • Jay Dean, mayor of Longview, 2005-2015; Republican state representative for Texas District 7
  • Clint Ford, American actor and writer
  • John Lee Hancock, American director and screenwriter
  • JaMycal Hasty, professional football player for the San Francisco 49ers
  • Kristy Hawkins, IFBB professional bodybuilder
  • Christopher Hinn, miller and Wisconsin State Assemblyman
  • Evonne Hsu, professional singer in Taiwan
  • Madison Hu, American actor, born in Longview, TX
  • Michael Huey, professional football player
  • Chris Ivory Starting running back for the New York Jets
  • Buford A. Johnson, chief mechanic for the Tuskegee Airmen
  • Chris Johnson, NFL cornerback
  • Montana Jordan, actor
  • Malcolm Kelly, American football player for the Washington Redskins
  • Lee Lacy, professional baseball player from 1972 to 1987
  • Miranda Lambert, American Country Music Artist, born in Longview, TX
  • Brandon Maxwell, fashion designer
  • Matthew McConaughey, Oscar-winning actor
  • Neal McCoy, Country music singer
  • Charlie Neal, professional baseball player from 1956 to 1963
  • Robert Newhouse, a professional football player from 1972 to 1983
  • Diane Patrick, member of the Texas House of Representatives from Arlington; reared in Longview as Diane Porter
  • Josh Scobee, Kicker for Jacksonville Jaguars
  • James Scott, professional football player
  • Jack Boynton Strong, Texas lawyer, businessman, and legislator
  • James Street, college football and baseball player for the Texas Longhorns
  • Bobby Taylor, All-Pro Cornerback for Philadelphia Eagles from 1995-2003; member of the Seattle Seahawks in 2004
  • Sam West, professional baseball player from 1927 to 1942
  • Forest Whitaker, Oscar-winning actor
  • Trent Williams, All-Pro Offensive Lineman for Washington Redskins
  • Warren Smith, Rockabilly Musician
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