The Fort Worth Area Versus Dallas: What Differences Define These Communities?
Whether you’re a newcomer to the DFW metroplex or you’re a longtime resident looking for your forever home, it’s important to understand the differences between the Dallas area and the Fort Worth area.
Whether you’re a newcomer to the DFW metroplex or you’re a longtime resident looking for your forever home, it’s important to understand the differences between the Dallas area and the Fort Worth area. Beyond the obvious differences in geography and population (Dallas, on the east side of the Metroplex, has 1.2 million people, compared to the 800,000 people who reside in Fort Worth, to the west), these two locales have distinct characteristics all their own. Which city should you call home? Let’s take a closer look.
Fort Worth: Growing OUT and UP
Forbes singled out Fort Worth as one of America’s fastest-growing cities, and it’s not hard to see why. Not only did the population of the Fort Worth area grow by more than 200,000 people between the 2000 and 2010 censuses, the city itself grew, annexing land to the north of the former border, which had a major effect on the city’s population growth.
Both recent and earlier land additions — such as land claimed for Fort Worth during the construction of DFW airport in the 1970s — means that it’s entirely possible to have to drive through several other towns just to travel from one section of the city to another. This leaves many Fort Worth communities with a smaller “hometown” feel more akin to suburbia than a city rapidly growing towards the million mark in population.
Indeed, many residents who live outside of Fort Worth’s defined downtown area actually identify the names of their neighborhoods as their residence, whether that be Handley to the east, Fossil Creek way to the north, Arlington Heights or Ridglea to the west, or Overton or Wedgeworth to the south. A fast look just at the defined neighborhoods in Fort Worth would reveal more names than the individual towns that surround the county seat.
Dallas: An Urban Oasis
The Big D that anchors the eastern end of the metroplex is considered by many to be an urban oasis. Although Dallas also has many defined neighborhoods and suburban towns within the county, the overarching feel of the Big D is that it’s a bustling and modern city.
While many Fort Worth residents also claim their neighborhood name as their residence, Dallas inhabitants only need mention the name of their city to cause a spark of recognition amongst fellow Americans or even around the world. And although many perceptions of Dallas formed during the reign of nighttime drama Dallas several decades ago (and during its shorter-lived revival more recently), this north Texas city has also done a lot of work to promote itself as a revitalized, tech-centric, and fast-growing area.
Even the way Dallas defines its neighborhoods is different than the Fort Worth area. For instance, in Dallas, you’ll find areas like Lake Highlands, Oak Cliff, and Oak Lawn. Within each of those neighborhoods, there are separate subdivisions that sometimes compete heavily with each other in terms of housing prices and new construction — consider the M Streets portion of Dallas’s Greenland Hills.
Where in the Metroplex do you want to live? Getting a sense of the differences between the Dallas and the Forth Worth area will help guide your decision.
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